Interview with 'A Beginners Guide to the Presidency' Actor Antonio De La Vega

Antonio De La Vega interview

Mexican actor Antonio de la Vega stars in a timely movie about presidential elections and the political campaigns' manipulation of the media in A BEGINNERS GUIDE TO THE PRESIDENCY. While the film takes place in Mexico, Antonio de la Vega assures us the film is not a commentary on one particular government, but a reflection of world politics.

In A BEGINNERS GUIDE TO THE PRESIDENCY, Franco Mujica (Unax Ugalde) decides to run for the Mexican presidency despite his wife’s misgivings. A campaign publicist is brought in to fabricate scandals and spin media stories that propel him into the Presidential chair. Once in office, Mexican politicians and businessmen seek to destroy their opponent once again with manipulations and control over the media.

Antonio de la Vega is a well-known Mexican actor, best known for his role on Telemundo’s hit Series “El Señor de los Cielos” and he was most recently seen in Netflix’s Club de Cuervos. In BEGINNERS GUIDE TO THE PRESIDENCY, de la Vega plays a co-anchor at the top rated News Magazine in Mexico who’s an expert in manipulating the news for political campaigns.

Antonio de la Vega tells CineMovie his character has no name for a specific purpose.

“His voice represents a class. That’s why he has no name. He represents the fifth power of the media world. His purpose is to maintain the status quo by fabricating lies by the people who move the politics.”

Beginners Guide to the PresidencyThe Mexican actor didn’t base his performance on any existing Mexican anchor or reporter, but an accumulation of what he’s seen throughout the years on Mexican television. It’s an “organic” representation of the media, he adds.

The media’s influence on political campaigns is something Americans can relate to with the current 2016 Presidential elections coming to a close. However, de la Vega says the film is not a reflection of the American presidential race nor a statement about Mexican politics. Instead, the film serves as a commentary about politics in general.

“I think it’s a portrait of politicians from all over the world. Politics are being driven by lies.”

When it comes to the United States’ presidential race, what does the outsider think of the messy politics from their northern neighbor?  

“It’s completely taken out of a work of fiction. I can’t believe the stuff I’m hearing from both sides of the parties.  It’s a show. It’s generating division, hatred and a lot of fear. That’s the main thing. It’s baffling and too complex to describe in words.”

Is the media equally controlled in Mexico as portrayed in A BEGINNERS GUIDE TO THE PRESIDENCY? De la Vega is pessimistic yet hopeful things are changing in his native country.

“It’s hard to tell who’s controlled and who’s not.  “I’d like to think there’s more free expression because it’s part of the American constitution as it is in Mexico. Things are changing bit by bit. There are more newscast or reporters who are more bipartisan.”

The Mexican movie ultimately ends with a message of hope, and a reminder what democracy truly means. “Real democracy is serving the people,” says de la Vega. That ideal society could be possible if the people unite, and social media is the tool that can help spark change as reflected in the movie through the younger characters.

“The movie tells people there is hope. Si se puede! That’s where social media comes in. Social media is very important. Social media can drive political change worldwide.”

Regarding corruption in the Mexican government, change can only be made if Mexican politicians are held accountable, but their immunity from prosecution makes it all the more difficult to clean up the systematic status quo, says de la Vega.

Regardless of the reality, the ultimate message behind A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO THE PRESIDENCY is hope.

The Spanish-language film opens November 4 around Southern California.

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