The subject of death and loss is fascinating to me and I started working on this project with a lot of emotions and sorrow ready to be expressed and released.
What I found most interesting and difficult in the character was to tap into the vulnerable yet self-absorbed and at times grotesque reaction of the widow.
Working with Eva is exciting, rigorous, intense, challenging, meticulous, puzzling and humbling. Her creativity and vision are unexpected and unapologetic, pushing boundaries and exploring new ways of being and looking at the world.
As a director Eva involves her actors in the process and embraces a true collaboration, she questions, and listens while offering to step into new territories, requiring self-control and restraint but also letting go full on. Besides being a great filmmaker Eva is also a natural actor.
I am grateful to have been part of this film and I appreciate the honesty and intimacy of our collaboration that led to a profound bond between the three of us.
I first met Eva the day I auditioned for 'The Widow'.
We sat down at her long white dining table. She served black coffee, and we talked for about an hour.
Many points of views were exchanged. I was immediately captivated by her ideas and her way of communicating them.
Although we both have very different backgrounds — she’s from Belgium and I’m from Puerto Rico — our conversation led way for me to feel something familiar. I felt that someone spoke my language.
After the exchange, she turned on the camera and left. I found myself alone in the living room, in complete silence, with the liberty to do an audition tape moment to moment, as my movements released words and emotions.
This is the premise of my experience in “The Widow” and yet the foundation for the work I got to do alongside Eva in the film. From the very beginning, the interaction with Eva was all about freedom and individual expression. This was an absolute luxury and indeed something that made me grow personally and artistically.
Moreover, within the unique aesthetics of her work, I got to experience a sincere yet bold way of storytelling: one that does not point at the pretty side of things but at the rough edges. Femininity, masculinity, sensuality, sexuality, taboos, love and pain are at the basic level of the many themes that wrap around the main concept of this film: mourning. This experience widened my perspective in regards to the complexity of human behaviors. Eva was very precise in what she was looking for and used raw and “bizarre” dramatic compositions in the form of vignettes to illuminate such complexity.
If I can say one thing about “The Widow”, it would be that it is an opened door, a parallel reality, of two women coping with loss without constrains and daring to free themselves in their most honest expression. Or at the very least, it is Eva’s vision of what it could be.