Afonso Pimentel • Actor
Shooting Star 2007 – Portugal
by Vitor Pinto
Portuguese film lovers watched him grow up on screen: from Adeus Pai (1996) until his best performance to date, in horror film Bad Blood [+see also:
film profile] (see news), Afonso Pimentel has accumulated different parts and registers both in television and film, drawing from each one experiences with which to build a versatile career. Now Pimentel is heading to Berlin and says, "I am happy, but I’m keeping my feet on the ground."
Cineuropa: Was acting what you always wanted to do?
Afonso Pimentel: Not really. At the age of six I began to save money to buy a camera. I wanted to tell stories. Then I "obliged" my friends to act in small stories. My interest for acting came naturally. At the age of 13, I went to a casting call for Adeus Pai. I was eager to know how others told their own stories. I remember saying: "If I am not chosen, perhaps they will let me assist to the shooting". That's how it all started…
How did you prepare your role in Bad Blood?
I went to the audition without knowing anything about the role. The directors only explained it to me when I knew for sure I was going to be in it. It would have been very easy to fall into clichés, into a ridiculous performance... We had that in mind as we started a long process of rehearsals. We came to discover the truth in each one of the scenes, the entire cast, with the directors and with other two actors who followed us in this process of discovery (Isabel and Marco de Almeida).
As an actor, would you like to continue to exploit the horror genre?
No doubt I am fascinated by it, but I would like to continue to develop other parts besides this one. Perhaps later I'll return to the horror genre, but with a different character. I want to be a different person in each film I do.
Cinema is an elitist world. Some actors are prejudiced and feel that if they work too much on television it will be harder to break into film. Despite your film background, aren't you afraid that the Floribella phenomenon (a hit soap opera targeted at children and teenagers) will slow down your film career?
I am aware that such prejudices exist but there is nothing I can do about it. Personally, I have never felt a victim of it. I believe in commitment and honesty in each work we do, whether it is a soap or a film. They are different products, designed for different targets and require different methods. The discipline of cinema certainly influences our attitude on the television set. On the other hand, experience in television are stimulating and offers the actor a quicker response mechanism.
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