Senorita 89 arrives this Sunday! To celebrate its premiere, we sat down to chat with Lucia Puenzo, showrunner of the show, about the genesis of the project, the female talent behind it, and a possible season 2. Ready?
Here we go!
In Senorita 89 we find incredibly strong and brave women and men with too much power and no conscience committing abuse after abuse. Taking into account the current situation in Mexico, Senorita 89 bears a chilling resemblance to reality, so we were interested in the genesis of this project and Lucia told us that “this project came about when I was shooting The Pack (La Jauría) in Chile. And the Larrain brothers made me the proposal to develop an idea for their first series in Mexico against the background of a beauty pageant in the 90s. At first, all kinds of prejudices were awakened in me, I still have them, even amplified, because of the research we did on the beauty pageant world, and because of that, I felt a certain reluctance to get into a series about that world,” she confessed.
“But at the same time, while the other female writers and I were researching what was going on, we realized that this series was the perfect excuse to talk about a lot of things other than a beauty pageant. That was the turning point in the sense that in the Mexico of the 90s, the world that scandalizes us today as women in 2022, was fully normalized. That fact invited us to take a journey back in time, to remember ourselves as teenagers, watching with our family 40-point rating programs in which a young woman’s skirt was cut off and the family applauded and debated whether she was beautiful, ugly, tall, fat or skinny… totally involved in that universe,” Lucia Puenzo comments.
“That made us realize to what extent we are involved in this problem, so the creation of the series was like revisiting that past with total honesty, understanding that we were all part of this, children, adolescents, men, women… and that’s why we also had the idea of creating complex women characters, like Concepción, who is a woman raised by a patriarchal world, complicit and functional in that world. Creating Concepción made us open our eyes in terms of understanding how functional that world is. Most of the time the answer to your question would be different because I’m usually guided by the present, but in this case, it was going from the present to the past,” shares Lucia.
It’s a wonderful, critical, and honest journey into the past. We were surprised by this response because we thought that Lucia had been inspired by the current situation in Mexico to create Senorita 89, but sometimes reality is stranger than fiction and we love that. We think that the true origin of the show is much better than what we thought because it takes those red flags that were always there, but back then we couldn’t see. Senorita 89 is all about showing us exactly what they are and why they’re there.
Senorita 89 hasn’t hit our screens yet and is already making incredible headlines. After this smashing start, what can we expect from this season? Are there plans for a season 2?
Lucia Puenzo gives us a lot of hope… “a season 2…we’ll see, let’s see how the public receives it…there are threads to pull, but we’ll see what happens…The truth is that it has been quite a journey for this group of women who made Senorita 89 from the cast to the directing. I want to emphasize the number of talented women who are part of this project. Senorita 89 was created by female screenwriters and directed, not counting my brother Nicolás [Puenzo] who is co-director in all my shows, by two female directors, one Spanish and one Mexican, and also the entire group of female authors. The making of this show was a deep dive into an uncomfortable story at times. I would tell you that the writing, the shooting, the editing, were at times very uncomfortable processes, in the sense of going through the shooting and editing of difficult scenes with a clear objective, but that was complicated to shoot. It was an intense journey for everyone,” Lucia confessed.
An intense journey indeed. We love the way that Lucia Puenzo and Senorita 89 can promote and highlight female and Latine talent. Representation matters! Now more than ever.
Lucia Puenzo is very clear that female talent must be promoted. And we love that! Senorita 89 is a living witness to the talent and strength of women, both on and off camera, which is felt in each character, in each shot, and each story. Because Senorita 89 is much more than the story of a beauty pageant, it’s the story of a past that we have to look at honestly and critically, it’s the story of strong and brave women who manage to survive in hell by staying together. Because alone we’re incredible but together, we’re unstoppable.
We don’t believe that there is anyone better to bring this story to life, speaking with Lucia Puenzo only reaffirmed this impression. Hopefully, we have more Senorita 89 and we have more of Lucia and all the female talent that this show brings to the fore.