Gentefied has felt, from the beginning, like a show made by our people, for our people. And for the three actors at the center of it, Karrie Martin, Carlos Santos, and Joseph Julian Soria, this is a much-appreciated reality.
Remezcla talked to this trio in preparation for the release of Gentefied season 2, which will be available on Netflix on November 10th, and one of the first things they emphasized was just how important this sense of belonging is in the story they’re telling and how it helps their performance.
“It felt right,” Santos told Remezcla, “the process of filming, of doing, preparing, and being directed. Everything about it just felt really authentic, which allowed us to relax into the characters.” To really become them, without having to second-guess whether they would behave this way or say that thing.
“A lot of times in the past,” Santos added. “I’ve been in situations where I don’t trust what’s happening, so it just puts you in a different place” when “you don’t trust that the people who are telling the story are telling it the right way. As an actor, you can’t really sink into it, because you’re worried about all these other things that you shouldn’t be worried about.”
The ways in which Gentefied is different were obvious on screen, but the knowledge that they feel the same behind the scenes gives a lot of weight to a show that a lot of people have fallen in love with, not just because of the representation, but perhaps because that part is so well done that, we can look past it, and start relating with the characters.
Soria, for example, was quick to point out how people kept asking about this second season, all throughout the pandemic. Even before they’d even started filming. “People just kept the fire, and the desire for the story.” And that’s the reason they’re here, and hopefully, will be here for seasons to come.
And as for Martin, who plays Ana Morales, a queer Latina in a TV world that doesn’t feature many of them, the experience was also enlightening in a completely different way than the one Santos referred to, and one that’s uniquely suited to the role she plays, and the position that puts her in. “It hit me hard to think (of a situation where) I’m constantly having to defend who I am as opposed to just being allowed to love for the sake of love. So, that was incredibly eye-opening for me, and the only way I could go into this character is without judgment, with the utmost respect, and with the acknowledgment that love is love.”
And Gentefied is about that love, the one you feel for family. The one you feel for your community. And yes, the romantic love too. All kinds of love, relationships, and problems have a place here. That’s the beauty of it.
The ten episodes of Gentefied season 2 will be available to stream on Netflix this Wednesday, November 10th.