Interview with Paz Vega

The co-star of “Spanglish” talks about her latest action thriller, American Night

Born in Seville, Spain, Paz Vega is perhaps best known to American audiences as the struggling single mom, Flor in the comedy-drama, Spanglish. After six successful seasons as Laura in Seven Lives (Telecinco,) one of Spain’s longest-running sitcoms, Vega won the Goya for Best New Actress as Lucia in Sex and Lucia. In the drama-thriller Solo Mia/Only Mine, Vega was again honored with a Goya nomination for best Best Actress. In the highly decorated drama-mystery Talk to Her, Vega received seven Goya Awards nominations. This was followed by the musical-comedy El Otro Lado de la Cama (The Other Side of the Bed), which became one of the highest-grossing Spanish comedies of all time. Soon after, Vega starred in the drama-romance Carmen. She then paired up with Santi Millán in the romantic comedy, Dí Que Sí/Say I Do, for Columbia Pictures in Spain.

Overall, Vega has performed in English, Spanish, French and Italian, in the United States, several European countries as well as Latin America. Recently, she played the lead on Alfonso Pineda Ulloa’s Espectro in Mexico. The province of Andalucía and the city of Seville have repeatedly recognized the actress for her tireless work representing her native region and city throughout the world. Paz has, thus, been awarded the Medal of Andalucía, the Seville Medal, and the prestigious Seville Gold Medal.

In the stylish, neo-noir action thriller, American Night, Paz Vega is Sarah, a seductive museum conservator, and art restorer. In this interview, Vega reveals her passion for acting and the challenges and rewards in bringing her role as Sarah to life.

Thank you for taking the time for this interview. What attracted you to the role of Sarah in this neo-noir action thriller?

Paz Vega: I loved the challenge of mixing action, thriller, and drama in the art world.
Sarah is the warmest and purest element in this universe full of characters who are moved by greed.

Did you audition for the role? If so, what was that like?

Paz: No, the director called me and they offered me the part directly.

One of the most interesting and compelling scenes was when you and Jonathan were making love covered in paint. Can you talk about that?

Paz: Honestly, it was a very uncomfortable scene. Too many people around and a very long shoot. Besides, I don’t recommend acting with colored paint. It’s very sticky!

In contrast, there was the nail-biting scene with that black scorpion on your lap. Was that a real poisonous scorpion?

Paz: That’s part of the mystery. We had a glass box on set full of scorpions. I think they are incredible and beautiful animals.

How did you prepare to so convincingly play a museum conservator and art restorer?

Paz: I love art in any form. So it wasn’t too complicated for me to create Sarah. And when you have great actors with you, the journey is beautiful.

You’ve performed in Spanish, French, and Italian films? In terms of acting, how are they different from American films?

Paz: Acting is the same always, no matter what language or accent you speak. When the director says “action” all my body and my emotions are there to create a life.

What was it like growing up in Seville, Spain?

Paz: I had a beautiful childhood in Seville, a city where art and tradition are part of their essence. I feel very lucky to have grown up there.

Any advice for young actors just starting?

Paz: This profession is wonderful but it is also very tough. Do not give up, learn from every mistake and keep the illusion every day.

Look for AMERICAN NIGHT in Theaters, on VOD, and Digital


Alex A. Kecskes has written hundreds of film reviews and celebrity interviews for a wide variety of online and print outlets. He has covered red carpet premieres and Comic-Con events for major films and independent releases.