Voice actress Carolla Parmejano is gaining more and more prominence in acting, becoming an icon in both fields. Parmejano is known as the voice of Delia in the Netflix series “La Casa De Las Flores”, Dra. Cho in the animation “Dead Space-After Math”, and Professora Pavlova in the Colombian soap opera “Chica Vampiro” aired on the Gloob channel, among many other characters for which she was nominated for important awards.
Now, Parmejano will play Linda Lopez in “O Faixa Preta”, a film about fighter Fernando Tererê that premiered on March 17 on HBO Max. She plays Tererê’s lawyer in the film directed by Caco Souza. Parmejano described the story as “magnificent, inspiring, painful and true” and mentioned that it was an honor to be part of the film about one of Brazil’s superheroes.
To play Linda Lopez’s strong personality, Parmejano went through a lot of rehearsals and research. She focused on studying the character’s posture, gait, and looks, as well as her life story. Parmejano was also inspired by Viola Davis from the series “How To Get Away With Murder” for the role.
Parmejano is also involved in two other current projects, including “Doggy Bank”, a comedy miniseries directed by Thales Corrêa and inspired by the classic “Quincas Borba” by Machado de Assis, and @LoveForUpcycling, a project developed by Parmejano and José Alexzander that aims to raise awareness and educate the public about the importance of recycling.
Although he lives in the United States and has a consolidated international career, Parmejano is turning his attention back to Brazil. She’s been doing some testing for future work, and her focus is on bringing the message of a healthier, more conscious planet through the @LoveForUpcycling project to an ever-growing audience.
Parmejano is an inspiration to many, having overcome obesity and bullying. In addition to being an actress, she is a dubbing artist, model and stuntman, having been nominated for important awards for her work in dubbing. She has also been in several films, including “Where’s Elisa?”, “Somebody Looks at You”, “Daybreak”, “The House Next Door”, “Single Almost Freaking Out”, and is host of “Next Stop”. Check out the interview!
Despite having already done several dubbings, today you are gaining more and more prominence through acting in front of the cameras. Initially, what was it like to go through this transition from the microphone to the camera lens?
I love doing both (Including Theatre). This transition has been going on for some time now, and it’s still acting, but with different techniques, of course. It is constant, and each day is a different challenge. And I love.
You’ve voiced many animated characters, including Dr. Cho from “Dead Space – After Math” and Professor Pavlova in the telenovela “Chica Vampiro”. What’s the biggest difference in acting in a live-action movie versus voicing an animated character?
In live-action you have the possibility and obligation to be your character with all the instruments in your body. Tone of voice, look, walk, posture, type of breathing… and etc., already in the dubbing, we use all this, but we are limited, and in my opinion – it’s a little more difficult process, because all this, including feelings and thoughts are reflected in a single instrument: The Voice.
Carolla, a side that despite much suffering, is relevant to be talked about in your life story, is that you went through moments that I believe few of us readers have gone through or will ever know what it is like to go through – like sleeping a few days on the street . Deep in my heart, I wanted to hear from you what it’s like to go through this experience and how do you see the way people treat this subject – whether in Brazil or abroad?
Horrible. But it took “Young” Carolla at that point in her life. I learned a lot, I cried a lot too – but it is a school where, despite everything, you learn to value the world you live in. I don’t wish anyone a moment like this. But it made the woman I am today, and after that phase – I grew up and I know how to better value absolutely everything I conquer today.
Still on life in the United States, you’ve lived there for 15 years and do both English and Spanish dubbing. Would you like to know a little more about your vision in relation to this American audiovisual production market in relation to what you know in Brazil? What was the main difference you felt when you tried it for the first time?
I’ve always dubbed in the United States, and I’ve just taken Mabel César’s course – Our dear and queen dubber. They are different ways, different gestures and different techniques as well. I don’t know much about Brazil because I haven’t had the opportunity to dub in the territory yet, but I know some studios, and many things are the same, I’m sure that each studio has its own way, but everyone wants a single goal, which is to do with quality and deliver the best for the customer.
You are involved in projects that seek to make people aware of the importance of recycling and conscious consumption. How did this initiative come about and what is the ultimate goal? Can you tell us more about the @LoveForUpcycling project?
A beautiful project that is part of my existence. I’ve always been passionate about saving our planet, and with minimal actions – like not buying fast fashion, or respecting daily recycling, I know that little by little makes a difference. LoveForUpcycling was born out of a conversation with my best friend in Florida, and we put it into practice. We’re still in post-production with everything, but I’m sure it’s going to make a huge impact on society. Website, a 10-episode show, fashion shows, all this is being planned with care and love and jaja the world will know this beautiful project.
The big goal is to bring awareness to people who don’t know that this world exists. It’s a global theme, and besides the community being huge, many people have no idea that it exists or could come to exist. Bringing awareness would be the great goal for a better and healthier world.
A Mexican series that has been quite successful on Netflix is ”La Casa de Las Flores”, which in addition to being an acidic comedy, it also addresses important social issues such as bisexuality and transsexuality. About approaching these serious themes with more acidic comedies, what is your opinion regarding the precautions we should take in bringing these situations through comedy?
Very careful! Play can become offensive even when you don’t mean it. We never know what the other is going through. Although comedy is a worldwide genre and attracts a very demanding audience, we need to understand and know how to interpret/act without having to hurt the other. Each subject has its complexities, and we are all different. I believe it is possible to make comedy about serious subjects in a way that brings visibility to them, instead of hate. Care that we can take includes seeking information on the subject, talking to people from different paths, surrounding ourselves with more diversity in order to reach a place where our speech can be more clearly perceived. And not least, always have the humility to apologize when you make a mistake.
Last month, HBO Max introduced you as the character Linda Lopez in the film “O Faixa Preta”, a biopic of fighter Fernando Tererê, two-time black belt world champion (2000 and 2003). How was the experience of participating in this production? How did you prepare for this character?
A dream experience! Much bigger and better than I imagined – Being part of his story, a great Brazilian athlete who conquered the world is very rewarding. I cry to this day when they send me video and photos of the film. Character preparation – assisting many lawyers, understanding the essence of Linda the lawyer and many details and exchanges with the writer: Rangel Neto. A film that came to stay in Brazilian History and help not only young people, but many who are going through many difficult times, considering giving up on their own dreams.
As far as we know, as part of the production process, you had a long phone conversation with the fighter. What was it like talking to him and what were your first impressions? How was the exchange with Raphael Logam, the actor who played the fighter?
I didn’t believe it was him. It was tremendous, the conversation was fast, he was direct and said exactly what I needed to hear. Logan is an exemplary professional… I asked him moments before to run the text and he got into character right away. I even have a video of him. It was beautiful.
How do you define upcycling and what is your creative approach to this process and could you tell us a little about your creative process in transforming old pieces into something new and modern? (@loveforupcycling)
Upcycling does not have its unique definition, you can do this “action” in several ways. How many times have you taken a shoe to be repaired? Or a purse? Or a belt? With this simple action you are already part of this community. Instead of buying another one you are re-using a piece. This saves countless natural organic factors such as labor, and this is upcycling. I, in addition to thinking and rethinking several times about buying something new, see if I really need that piece, with furniture the same way. And thus helping with a little grain to not create more work and pollution in the world.
In addition to the whole story we tell here, you also resisted several other situations, such as obesity, bullying, and ended up being pointed out as an example for overcoming and versatility. Added to all the adversities that life has put you to the test, how do you think all of this contributed to who Carolla Parmejano is that we are meeting today?
Yes! Without these stages and challenges in my life, I would not be who I am today, all the values, naturalness, actions regarding a problem, solving and continuing my life would be completely and even more difficult if I had not lived through each phase. This Carolla is the fruit and continuity of the youngest Carolla, and I am proud of all these phases.
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*With Regina Soares