×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Juan Antin’s Animated Film ‘Pachamama’ Arrives on Netflix After 14-Year Journey

Writer-director Juan Antin worked for 14 years to make “Pachamama,” which tells the tale of a young boy growing up in the Andes in the time of the Incas and the Spanish explorers, and now the animated film will be seen by a global audience when it debuts on Netflix on Friday, June 7.

“The idea came one day when I was at a festival in Cuba presenting my first film, ‘Mercano the Martian,'” explains Antin. “I was staring at the sea and I had a vision. I imagined all those ships coming in from Europe and Spain 500 years ago. I said, ‘Wow, I can imagine how the indigenous people saw these men arrive and thought they were gods.’ I started to imagine the different points of view that each one has of the other and thought it would be a good idea for a film.”

Pachamama,” which had its world premiere at the Animation Is Film Festival last October, follows the adventures of a 10-year-old boy who wants to become a shaman. He goes on an adventure with his friend and her pet llama to retrieve a small golden statue confiscated from their village by an Incan overlord. The title, “Pachamama,” refers to an earth-mother goddess worshiped by the indigenous people of the Andes, and the film has an ecological theme that resonates strongly today.

Netflix picked up the film in February. The Cesar Award-nominated movie was influenced by the work of Antin’s anthropologist wife, who was doing social work in Argentina at the time with indigenous communities. Antin had the opportunity to talk with community leaders and shamans. “That’s when I really fell in love with this culture of Pachamama, how they worship the earth. They are in gratitude and in love with the earth and it’s so simple,” he says.

“And I thought it’s two points of view of the same thing: Europeans coming from Spain, from Europe, from England, France also, and seeing the earth as a resource of richness and gold, and these people that just see it as something to worship.”

Antin recalls a woman who was at an early screening of the film who told him that she understood why it took so long to get “Pachamama” made. “She said people weren’t prepared for this film back then,” he says. “I said, ‘That’s right, because 14 years ago, it wasn’t a thing that people talked about. It wasn’t in the media with people saying we have to save the planet.’ I guess it comes at the right moment now.”

It’s a message that Antin is glad to see go out to a global audience.

“Since the moment I knew that Netflix was interested in the film, I was thrilled because I believe this film has to be seen and because I want this message to be carried worldwide,” Antin says. “Netflix took the film and is putting in a lot of work, dubbing it in 20 languages. It’s amazing for an independent film to have a release that size.”

“Pachamama” is produced by Didier Brunner, who has backed a number of notable international animated films, including “The Old Lady and the Pigeons,” “Kirikou and the Sorceress,” “The Triplets of Belleville,” “The Secret of Kells” and “Ernest and Celestine.” With Brunner’s backing, the film went into production in 2015.

With “Pachamama” about to make its global debut, Antin is working on his next project, writing a script along the same lines as “Pachamama,” but set in the Amazon.

More Film

  • Judi Dench

    Judi Dench Says Works by Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey Should Be Respected

    Veteran British star Judi Dench has said that the work produced by Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey should be separated from the offenses they are alleged to have committed. Both Weinstein and Spacey face charges of sexual assault in the U.S., which they deny, and have been investigated in other jurisdictions as well, including Britain. [...]

  • Karlovy Vary Honorees

    Karlovy Vary Fetes Julianne Moore, Patricia Clarkson, Vladimir Smutny

    The Karlovy Vary Intl. Film Festival Honorees JULIANNE MOORE, Crystal Globe for Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema An actress, author and activist, Moore has long earned accolades on her diverse career path. The North Carolina native won a Daytime Emmy with her first major TV role on the soap opera “As the World Turns,” [...]

  • CLOSE QUARTERS – In Disney and

    Korea Box Office: ‘Toy Story 4,' ‘Aladdin’ Share Weekend

    Two Disney releases, “Toy Story 4” and “Aladdin” ruled the weekend box office in Korea. Opening on Thursday, “Toy Story 4” earned $8.54 million from 1.12 million admissions over its four opening days. The animated family adventure film accounted for 32% of the country’s total weekend box office. May release “Aladdin” slipped to second from [...]

  • Lendita Zeqiraj Agas House Movie

    Karlovy Vary Embraces New Voices From the East

    When Karlovy Vary Film Festival’s East of the West competition opened to submissions from the Middle East two years ago, festival artistic director Karel Och noted it was “about time to abandon the political definition of the ‘East of the West’ countries,” long determined by the geographical boundaries hemming in the former Soviet bloc. Though [...]

  • Let There Be Light Movie Marko

    Tough Competition in Spa Town Festival

    When the curtain rises June 28 on the 54th edition of the Karlovy Vary Intl. Film Festival, there will be a conspicuous absence among the 12 titles selected for the main competition: Czech directors. It’s just the second time this decade that the host country has failed to field a single entry in competition, a [...]

  • Diana Rigg, Terence Stamp Join Edgar

    Diana Rigg, Terence Stamp Join Edgar Wright’s ‘Last Night in Soho’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    Edgar Wright’s “Last Night in Soho” has rounded out its cast, with veteran actors Diana Rigg and Terence Stamp among the stars signing on for the latest movie from the “Baby Driver” director. Stamp can currently be seen in Netflix hit “Murder Mystery” with Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston. Rigg’s recent roles include Olenna Tyrell [...]

  • Zhang Zhao LeEco film

    Zhang Zhao, Chief of Le Chuang (Formerly Le Vision Pictures), Resigns

    Zhang Zhao, the chairman and CEO of Le Chuang Entertainment, formerly known as Le Vision Pictures, has resigned for “personal reasons,” the firm said.    Zhang’s resignation was announced in a statement posted to the firm’s official social media account Monday, which thanked him for his service. “Le Chuang will carry on as before, using [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content