Spout Podcast
Spout Podcast

Episode · 8 months ago

The Encanto Special

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

By creating immersive worlds through the power of imagination and animation, Disney has led us on journeys through underwater kingdoms, beautiful bayous, castles surrounded by moats, and magical lands made of ice. They recently introduced us to a hidden Colombian village that is literally alive with music.

'Encanto' has enchanted millions worldwide with its musical and cultural significance. We sat down with Jessica Darrow and Adassa, who play Luisa and Dolores, respectively, to get an inside look at this Oscar-winning film's unique story in a must-listen-to special episode for Disney fans worldwide.

The cast spouts off on the magic of Lin Manuel Miranda, the challenges of filming during the Covid lockdown, the focus on inclusion in Disney films, and walks you through the making of that song we don't talk about.

Disney is a brand that has stood the test of time by creating immersive world through the power of imagination and animation. Disney has led us on journeys through Underwater Kingdoms with singing sea life and magical lands of talking snow men and ice princesses, too, most recently, a hidden Colombian village with a house that's quite literally alive with music. Yes, in Conto, the movie that has enchanted millions around the world with its music and cultural significance, we got the incredible chance on spout to sit down with Jessica Daro and Adasa, who play Louisa and Dolores respectively in the film, to get the inside look on just how incredible this journey has been. This is the spot podcast where famous people spout off about more than what they're famous for. My name is Eric Zachary, and today we sit down with actors of Inconto, Jessica Daro and a Dosa. In conso was released in November of two thousand and twenty one and was recorded and produced from isolated rooms all over the country, mainly due to covid restrictions. Jessica Daro in particular thought she didn't get the role because lockdown happened shortly after she auditioned. Covid happened, that was the law. It was me going how, wow, I can't even think about are. I'm just thinking about death and it's in trying to survive and what's going to happen next, like literally everything being stripped away. You, you literally being presented with life and death and realizing what is truly important at the end of the day. So, to be quite honest with you, going in to this recording process of this film, in particular, immediately after, not even after, like during, yeah, this time where family became so much more important or even, for some people, realizing, you know, how important or how much would impact their family has had in their own upbringing, in themselves and their do genetic makeup, generational trauma, seeing sides of your family that you never thought you'd see. You know, me doing this right after like going home for four months of my childhood bedroom because I had to directly from la where I auditioned for this film. Yeah, I was like, okay, here we go. None, there's no map for any of this. It's all unprecedented and I quite honestly don't understand any of it, but I'm just going to roll with the punches and I've done voiceover commercials, so let's see if I can do this as an animated character, because, yeah, I also relate to her on so many levels. But we all relate to Luisa, I'm sure you're abound. This book mean, like most major films, changed her life. She compares her situation now when she was struggling just a short time ago living in New York City. You know, five years ago I was just I was having you know, I was catering, I was trying, just like you know, doing so many auditions, begging for someone to just take a minute and and notice me. But in the meantime I was also hanging out with my friends and it was never an obstacle finding time to have fun go out. I always loved throwing it get togethers and parties. I was raised doing that. My mother is just a natural hostess and is so warm and welcoming and has such a beautiful big heart, and my family definitely and still that in me. My love of community and family just automatically pours out into my friendships. I want to have all of us together as much as possible, which is also why the pandemic was I mean for all of us it was horrible, but for that kind of an extra...

...vert it's next exact exactly. And you know, and I would honestly say that I'm an introverted expert because I need to be alone and I need to recharge in a my lone time so that I can be the best extrovert itself. I know I can be and that I enjoy being around people, but if I don't get the time to like not talk to anyone and just like shut up and reach ared, I'm a beato parks. But thanks to the extreme success of in Conto, the cultural spot like conversation stations it's sparked, and the support of her friends and family, those struggles she experienced just a short while ago have given way to a clear vision on what Jessica has been put on earth to do. It's the first time that I've I have felt a sense of purpose and I actually like I see, like I see what I'm supposed to be doing now, and what I mean by that is I I love bringing my people and my friends into my work. It is no secret that limone Miranda is a huge inspiration to me, and what I love about him the most and what I admire is how much he takes pride in making his work about his people and about personalities and cultures that he grew up with. Also like, quite literally, his people, like his friends and I know too many creatives. You know, five years ago we were struggling artist, but the thing is we're still struggling artist now. Like the struggle ebbs and flows. It's always a different kind of struggle, but it's something that lives in your heart and honestly, I don't think can ever go away because it needs to fuel you to continue to, you know, be uncomfortable and, for that reason, create change and bring things to the surface that people would never know otherwise. And it takes, you know, I'm realizing it's it takes people like me and my friends who have been and given this opportunity just thrust upon me because it happens to be through Disney. It is it's my responsibility and it is now. It's a beautiful goal of mine to continue to make work and tell stories that feel purposeful and, you know, it doesn't need to be about some like, oh crazy weighted thing like look at and Gon Tho look at all the things that that brought up, but through the Lens of this like enjoyable, colorful, gorgeous, silly children's home, but at the same time it held so much weight. And there is a whole world inside of me and stories that I want to tell, especially things that come from the dark places that I've experienced, things that I've gone through in my head that I know my friends are going through as well, let alone my family people who are so close to me, and that that's the fact that we don't talk about that and the fact that we don't try to bring that more into the stories that we're telling in the art that we're making into network television is crazy to me. Like all, so much money is thrown into streaming services network television. Okay, let's use that money to bring the people who really needed to come, help them come forward and tell the stories that will actually hit the people who are subscribing to these networks and streaming services and they will watch more. You need people to see themselves, you need them to identify. So this has all stemmed from a question that you asked me about how I balance my work and friend life, and I would say, you know, I try. It is a goal for me to make it a blend. I will be the luckiest, most fortunate lady on this Damn Planet if I am able to discover the blend, and I...

...feel I mean at least for the first time in my life. I've never been given this access. Ever, I still am convinced that I am cosplaying and Larping as a celebrity, because this is not real, like what it's I mean, it's all a for consimulation, right, but the simulation right now is pretty good. So while I'm in it, I'm going to I'm gonna Bring my people with me. I saw an interview you did, I think you're at Disney Springs, where you said I don't want to be pinched right now because if this is the dream, I don't want to wake up from that kind of thing, and I was like, Oh my God, I bet that that I can relate to to such an nth degree. Yeah, but, yeah, yeah, there's still a there's still an internal fear. Hopefully it never has to happen, but okay, you know what happens when, though, that high becomes a low again and you switch and it's a roller coaster and it has it's a roller coaster. It will continue to ebb and flow, but as long as we have conversations like this and we focus on how we can, we can continue to grow and use this momentum, momentum to push us forward and and cause more good and change, because, damn the world needs that right now. I'm tired of being scared and I'm tired of living in fear. Like the only way that we can overcome that is if we all find, like, the joy and beauty in what we have now. How can we push that forward? How can we spread that as far as we possibly can in a genuine grounded way? Because when they're stuff to deal with, their stuff to deal with and yeah, I don't know. I mean, you know, after the past couple of years, I think we realize how important it is to to really like not take those wonderful moments for granted and therefore make them means something that another stuck whoap doll. You just go bum oh to scare. It doesn't hurt. And see if she can know every family burden. What does she fun but never break no mistakes. Louisa, Jessica's character in the film, sings a song about staying strong for the family in all situations, never breaking, never bending, everyone relying on her to do the quite literally heavy lifting, but never asking if she's okay or needs to be lifted up herself. The song is clearly struck a chord with fans, as it's been streamed over one hundred and forty million times on spotify alone. Jessica has released clips of her singing the song in different musical styles, but one seemed to have been missing. Would you do a country version? Why are you asking me that? Why are you asking me if I would do country? Huh? Why do you pick country? Because I wanted to get this reaction out of you out. Why would you? Okay, okay, ready, let's see. Bread, like I can dream, dream, dury, never stop. WHOA raft metal tap to hip deep billion, just do B God, I'll see. I just heard it. I'm just here to showcase you as much as possible to continue opening these opportunities. You are incredible, hilarious. Wow, thank you, and honestly, I'm just like you. Know now that's as far as I'm gonna go on the country version, and the Oscars too. He and CONTO, no surprise here, took home best animated feature at this past year's Oscars, which is no easy feat to begin with, but this one seems extra special, since the movie was made almost entirely through the covid lockdown. A DOSSA, who voices the Loris in the film, did all of her recordings from the comfort of her own home and kept all of her scripts and fear of them ended up in the wrong hands once she had thrown them out. You did all of your recording remote. Am I getting that right? Yes, you know, but since I have you here on hands, this is...

...the booth here, right here at my home. Oh my God, we recorded in and I'm gonna let you in on it. Nobody else has seen this. I've posted it, but nobody else has seen this. This is actually the script, Oh, one of the pieces, and that is the actual we don't talk about Bruno right there, right the original being it. That is the original. And wait, there's more. You see all those on the floor? That's what I did not tread. I was so scared. I was so scared going straight MTV crews with this. I love it. You're coming on the ride with me. I did not want to shred anything because I had nightmares that some go through my trash put it together with ape and release parts of the script. So I kept everything. There's like eight hundred pages worth of stuff in there on the floor. I was just scared. What was the final count of this script, of the page? You know, I don't really know where it ended up, because sometimes this would change. It would just be one line. Oh, sure you couldn't be like, Oh, and, by the way, go from page forty seven to that two hundred and eighty five, and you know. Yeah, so that's why things get printed. But and nobody ever sees the full mosaic whenever you're recording something like this, because it's very hush hush. We really didn't know what was going on except for the little bit that the directors would say and right before this scene or yeah, just to give you the mark mindset, just to know picture in your mind this is what's going on. And it was so much fun because it was like hanging out with friends and being in this imaginary world where you can be anything and act and jump and and you know something's following you and be vulnerable emotionally with somebody. Yeah, you just become friends. It just becomes such a beautiful relationship and Jerry Bush and Byron Howard and Linnman Wuel created such a wonderful space to just be fun and Quirky and out of the BAR ADASA is no stranger to recording booths. She is a Reggaton artist who, like Jessica Daro, had her fair share of struggles to earlier in life, I was selling my CDs out of my backpack before in Houston, Texas. I was wherever they would put me to sing on them. On the speaker, I'll do it on table, whatever. Yeah, you know, I was doing everything I could and with my husband get brook on the Ani, we've always produced our music together. When we moved to Florida, that's where I meant. was that home. While the comb is actually my Luma's manager, and he took a chance on me by signing me be Afro Latina, Doing Bra get, being Colombian and doing bilingual music. Back in the day that didn't have even though recording foreign conto for a Dozza was all remote, she was able to let fans into our home and the process through the power of an APP that saw an incredible surge and usage and content creation in the pandemic. Tick Tock. Oh, met bay, she didn't get one. Tick Tock is crazy. I just joined like twelve when I have like five, yeah, thousand followers. It's crazy. I want to talk about that. Okay, so I saw the obviously the vital tick tock where you see Limon while Miranda reacting to you recording, which, like, I'm sure in the moment you're very you are aware, but also looking back at that like you're going, Oh my God, my eyes were closed because I was so yeah, good to live in Filipoon. Knows the doing is dumbling. I can always dom SORTA muttering and mumbling, I associate, I'm looking around of fun SA and so I didn't know anything was happening until I open my eyes at the end see like what did you think? And he was like like he's there. Oh my gosh. Taking yourself back to that point, I think there was like what two thousand and five? Actually, let's say you had tick Tock. You're doing the same hustle, you had that same mindset. which kind of approached do you think be the dances? would be a little bit of everything. I would be bringing people into the studio life, like recording live and being able to love what that process is like and then pumping on. Yes, I love dancing, so maybe sometimes, while people are getting the drum sets or whatever, you know, be like let's let's jump on a challenge or let's do it real quick. You know, I would have loved to be doing that back of the day, but you know what, now with we don't talk about Bruno. It's given me that opportunity, that beautiful platform where I can connect with people around the world. I have people from the United States, from everywhere in the United States, and then people from Egypt and the Philippines and...

...from the UK and Colombia, I mean everywhere, and it's so beautiful because it's like being at their hands right there. Yeah, I'm stage with them, except I'm in my home and I get to tell stories of what I went through or are here. They are stories. That makes me so happy to see their art and hear their dreams and why they say. You know, I feel like I'm the Lords, or if I feel like I'm Camillo, our wish my sister wasn't so much like he said, I like you know she gets the nerves. Tick Tock was a huge help in the promotion up and content up, but the real magic came from the soundtrack itself, though each of the ten songs featured in the movie have well over twenty million streams on spotify. One Song in particular has risen well above the rest. No, no, no, no, we don't talk about Bruno, is officially the biggest single ever from a Disney movie, bigger than let it go. Did you what? Did you know that? Did you feel coming? Did you see this coming? I know because, like group numbers never get the same kind of love like that that the ballads get or the you know, the the comedy songs get. But I didn't know it was catchy because when I was first writing it, I would catch my kids singing it just from overhearing me writing it, and I remember I kind of had to have a like NDA for toddler's conversation. Sounds like you guys can't sing this at school, we can always sing this around the house because they, you know, your friends don't don't know the song yet, and we don't talk about we don't, we don't talk. We don't talk about we don't talk about Bruno? Yeah, exactly. Yeah, they'll familiar with success in her own music career. Nothing could compare to where this movie, and specifically this song, would take a Dossa. You're part of this Disney franchise at a time when it's kind of the first time that a song, for our Disney song at least, could have this success on Tick Tock, could have this worldwide recognition. Obviously, we're not discrediting let it go, or not discrediting in any of the soundtracks from the last thirty years, but there is a reason that is let's let's name the the accolades. Number one first, number one Disney track sense a whole new world. And then before that was can I love in the air tonight? Like, I mean, that's yes, that's that is something that to night. I mean, come on, I want to do Karaoke with you. Well, that would be so much fun. I would. I'm the terrible singer, but I'm amazing backup dancer. I'll I'm ready, as long as you look like you're into it. Yeah, I can lip sync, for for sure. Let's go, especially when there's words. So when you the mindset, I want to do a little compare and contrasts onny like my fifth grade school teacher. But I would imagine you know, when you start to have that success, because you have nothing short of an impressive career, impressive resume and you've gotten to do so many cool things in so many different arenas of music, of film, of different cultures and different parts of the world, when you had that first success or first couple successes, compared to when you realized, like obviously, we know you're asked to do something like this, when you're when you're recording Disney and when you're doing something that's so significant to Columbia too, when you realize, okay, this is more than that, this is this is skyrockety, this is registering, this is this is a success. How did those compare? It's so different because this was in a way that I never thought I would be able to enter into somebody's home with my culture right behind me through an animated film. I feel the Lotus is me, is you, is everybody here. You know we have little quirks within ourselves that make us a little bit like meat up in or a little bit like Camillo, and to be able to be a part of their lives. It's more beautiful because it with the single it's different, you know, you release the song, it's like number one, awesome, and then they move on to the next and it's out with it. Yeah, he film. It's like who doesn't Still Watch the Little Mermaid? I've got the lion kidy. I'll watch it again. I'll watch tangled, I'll watch recort Ralph, I will watch them all. You'll...

...have them on repeat, but sometimes you forget, like what was that hit back in two thousand and four in January? Hmmm, when you have something so entertined with a culture, with family, with a visual representation to like that doesn't go away. No, and it speaks to people who are also immigrants, you know. The film touches upon displacement. It talks about the Afro Latinos, you know, and how hard it was sometimes, even for leaving your countries, for your parents to understand your family a little bit more, not to judge them so harshly and feel like they're the villains because my grandma makes me get up at four in the morning or whatever. You know, the traditions that they bring from who they are, but we need to also understand their perspective and why things were a little bit like that. We also have that seed within us of beauty, of culture, and it just makes us so much more rich and appreciate ourselves so much more. And that's what in Canto does. It speaks to hey like let's let's lay off a grandma a little bit, a little bit funny, funny enough, I'm not even joking. My grandmother is right over here to ninety three birthday. She's asleep, I think she's snoring, but she's with me in spirit and a perfect example. Yet it cut hers some slack right she is hanging at Disney, is celebrating her birthday at ninety three years old, drinking bloody Mary's like it's water. No big deal, you know this, happy birthday. Grow I'm a ninety three and she's hidden Disney. You see, that's what I'm saying. Timeless people, mm for all ages, for you, for me, for grandma and my kids, it's for everybody. In CONTO has opened the door on the conversation of inclusivity and films. The cultural impact that these movies have on young children of all ethnicities cannot be overlooked. The significance of a child seen someone who looks like them in a leading role on screen can quite literally be life changing. Disney is no stranger to bring in culture and backgrounds to life through animation, though, like the Mexican experience of cocoa, make me focal the way you keep me guessing. I'd missing felt it as as that. I'm more or most recently the Chinese Canadian coming of age story. Seeing red proven of happy true but terre you do. However, there's still a long way to go. A DOSSA and jussicauld give their input on which culture they would like to see take center stage on the silver screen. I would love to be involved with. I would say somebody maybe from India. I also visited Jordan and I think there, wow, culture is so beautiful and they have so much depth to what they believe in and who they are and makes them who they are, healthy, dress and why, and I think a understanding would come out of that, you know, and a lot of respect that I that I really gained for them because I went in times of Ramadan and how respectful, even the children. I can't get my kids to fit out and pray for ten seconds before a meal, and over there the food would be served in the middle of Ramadan and until that prayer came on, those kids would be sitting there in attention, not touching anything. And because you saw them, yeah, even you can tell. You don't have to speak the language to know what that look looks like. We've all been there, doesn't matter what culture you from, if you have a parent or a parental figure, you know that look, that look of don't you make me look fat. I think there's so much diversity within all of our cultures and so much that can also be appreciated and it Disney is a perfect platform. I mean they did it for Columbia, you know, to really show the beauty of the place. And even though it's not a Columbian film, like it's not a documentary, but the inspiration they took of it is flawlessly done. flawlessly. They had cultural specialist that came and gave from their opinions of everything from the way they dressed to the texture of their hair. I mean even the texture of the heir, if you notice in the Lortice is similar to yeah, and Felix is different. His hair is more course, and he's a darker skin tone. And for me, I wish my grandma would be alive because the strides that after Latinos have had from her time and more people of my color and people of her color. They were...

...the help, they were the person serving the food, taking care of the children. They would have never been principal characters. And to have that moment with we're beat Vail and the Lotus are sitting across the table from each other in that intense, funny, dramatic moment. That would have never happened twenty years ago. You know, it wasn't for the platform of Disney and they're just starting this conversation. I hope other directors and other filmmakers also incorporate the beauty and diversity that we have within our whole, entire world. There's so many talents out there. I'm glad that it was my opportunity, but next time it might be yours. Just make your talent be seeing. Use the platforms you have, like Tick Tock, like YouTube. Put Your content out there. Don't be afraid of being silly. That's what life is about. Be Silly whatever. If you messed up, it's okay. Just try because you never know who's watching. I just wanted to get as Brown as possible. We just, like I, just want more Brown people on screen. I would love. I would love to see a story about indigenous culture. I would love. I'm always trying to see more black stories, but that is also specifically from my American perspective right Um, because this country really needs that. I mean this country just needs to see more brown period. But the beauty of what and Gontam brought into my life is that, you know, I'm Cuban, but I learned so much about Columbian culture through this process and also how much, how close it is to my own, and that was so beautiful and connecting for me, because I had never seen myself or any story that truly felt like it was my owner, like I could relate to it. So my story like that is is one that I am dying to tell. Next, I think Disney should definitely take into consideration also more lgbtq representation, and I know that our gorgeous film, people like to say it has been sprinkled with it. I think it's been more than sprinkled, I feel really like, but sprinkled is different than representation. You know, sprinkled is amazing, it's a great start, but that's not necessarily one to one representation, true representation, and I mean we all know like, especially with the flak that the corporation disneys receiving right now, we could definitely use more LGBTQ plus representation, and I would love for there to be. I would love for there to be a love story, but also I want there to be I want there to be clear representation that doesn't have to even be about romance or sex. Right. I would love to just talk about how queer people exist on their day to day basis just as normal human beings and not having to be identified by what we enjoy Romantically, because that actually sometimes has nothing to do with anything. Right. It's just like you know so and I see how for Disney Anna, maybe that's a maybe that's a push, but I think that it would actually be very smart. They have collected award after award through the years with their stories, animations soundtracks, but like most big brands, now more than ever, Disney is a brand that has a responsibility to use their influence for good, to have the tough conversations and to include those who have been excluded for years. It's a long road ahead, but these recent films, especially in Canto have started what hopefully is a revolution in the world of movie making. Every story deserves to be told, and there are few better ways to do that than through the art of film. My name is Eric Zachary. This has been the spot podcast until next...

...time. Yes, we'll see you later. Fount.

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