Fear the Walking Dead actress Danay García raised the red velvet curtains on Loca in her upcoming film, Avenge the Crows, during our interview.
In Avenge the Crows: The Legend of Loca, we’re told there’s “an opposite reaction to every action”. Every choice has a consequence, good and bad: A concept all too familiar to the film’s leading actress.
That radiant, shimmering spotlight illuminating Danay García as a Hollywood star feels practically omnipresent now. Yet, it could have been pitch black to us, a burning candlelight never leaving its window sill. Every day its wax melting a little more, idly staring away at ‘what-could-have-been’ without one choice. The gutsy life-changing choice to leave Cuba in 2003 is a decision that Danay García told us she reflects on to this very day.
Danay García on leaving her home:
“What would my life have been like if I stayed in Cuba? I still think about it…” The affinity for theater existed long before Los Angeles was a glimmer in García’s eyes. The dazzling actress told us she’d ‘already started her theater training earlier in Cuba’. Maybe career-wise everything would have turned out the same. Maybe not. History cannot be relived if a mistake occurs. That’s what we come to learn in Avenge the Crows, there’s no going back.
This ultra-competitive gladiatorial arena of acting is still fought in Rome so-to-speak. To an actor, Rome is Tinseltown, La-La Land, the whole coliseum. Who knows what happens to Danay García’s acting career if she never leaves Cuba in 2003? Would there still be a Loca or Luciana? One action can change everything.
Danay García on her tattoos in Avenge the Crows changing her fundamental performance:
García’s Loca dabbles in quite a bit of cocaine during Avenge the Crows. Though two different roles we couldn’t help but recall her being the clean one on Fear the Walking Dead. Luciana always wanting Nick to quit the junk. We inquired about the on-screen experience from an acting perspective. Walking Dead director Greg Nicotero after all once said, ‘just putting on makeup on an actor to show they’re bruised changes their performance’.
It was instead the tattoos that permeated García’s soul as Loca. She described the size and nature of her tattoos for the role with much passion. Stating “Greg [Nicotero] is absolutely right about that”, and that the loudness of the tattoos made her look at herself differently. That first inked visual in the mirror staring back like a whole new person. Enhancing the act of becoming Loca in a subtle yet deafening way. Every tat conveying its own story to its wearer as much as its viewer.
Danay García on vulnerability as an actress and in life:
Loca can handle herself in Avenge the Crows, no sight of ruthlessness shakes her confidence. Instead, much like Rick Grimes on The Walking Dead, it’s her companions and family that are her vulnerable weak spot. Her innocent cousin Cammy [Angelique Rivera] in the film is targeted and preyed upon without mercy rather than Loca. Bait in a game the streets hold up, rules decided in prisons.
We asked García as both an actress and as a mother, what it meant to have someone counting on you? Depending on your very existence for the appearance of unsinkable safety… García remarked, “I believe strength comes through weakness”. That in order to be strong, you must also expose your inner-self. To wear your heart on your sleeve with a fist ready at the end of it if need be.
Danay García on being involved in casting decisions behind the scenes:
García was not just an on-screen talent for the filming of Avenge the Crows but a Producer as well. We asked her if she’d like to take on that behind-the-camera type of responsibility again.
"“Yes, of course!” with joy in her voice before the sentence even concluded. “I loved being part of that creative process, the casting process especially, being able to bring friends on-board to the film like Steven Bauer, Lou Diamond Phillips. Many of which I worked on films together before like Danny Trejo. I’m also a writer and would love to delve into that next.”"
Danay García on Loca almost being banished from favorite bar:
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During an early opening scene of Avenge the Crows, Loca is on the cusp of being banished from her favorite bar by actor Danny Trejo’s character, Antonio. We jokingly inquired if life-imitated-art and if she had ever been ‘banished’ from a bar in real life.
García laughed and remarked:
"“Nope! I’ve never been banished from a bar in real life. No banishment for me. That would never happen, I’d have to be pretty bad for that!”. You can probably rest easy Luciana fans. We’re guessing Trejo is pretty lukewarm on his threat of banishment to Loca!"
Danay García on film’s name change from Loca to Avenge the Crows:
Those who’ve followed the journey of Avenge the Crows might recall the film simply being titled ‘Loca’ initially. We asked García, why the name has been changed to Avenge the Crows: The Legend of Loca? The name Loca now in the subtitle, rather than the headline.
"“It’s because the story was much bigger than Loca alone, it’s about the neighborhood blocks, life on the streets, and how it all comes together and plays out. Avenge the Crows represents revenge, the running and driving theme of the film”."
Danay García on playing characters of Mexican descent recently:
We noticed on both Fear the Walking Dead and Avenge the Crows, García portrays characters of Mexican descent, though not necessarily explicitly referenced as such. We asked García if she’d also like to dive more into her own Cuban heritage on film or TV in the future.
"“I’ve loved exploring the Mexican culture! Especially the significance of the Day of the Dead for Fear. There’s something beautiful about it. I’ve actually portrayed a Cuban girl before on film and it’s something I can see myself exploring again.”"
Danay García on the mind of a dancer:
Danay García’s passion for the art of dance and ballet shaped her early life all the way to now. A voyage with no destination, it’s about the journey. In Danay’s words, “having the mind of a dancer lets you see things differently in life”.
Ballet certainly shaped the stage of young Danay’s life. The whimsical rock of motion. From her early childhood, you can already see her training ballet. The focus and determination required built the foundations of everything to follow. From acting to modeling, it instilled a confidence she could always draw from.
Where to see Avenge the Crows: The Legend of Loca
Avenge the Crows: The Legend of Loca will be released on December 5 on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital services. Directed/Written by Nathan Gabaeff, the film stars Danay García as the lead along with co-stars Steven Bauer [Ray Donovan], Danny Trejo [Machete], Lou Diamond Phillips [La Bamba], and Emilio Rivera [Sons of Anarchy] to name a few.
Without giving too much away, the film centers around a singular decision by Loca in the name of revenge coming back to haunt her. As the cycle of vengeance comes full circle on the neighborhood blocks… Seemingly with no end, and rivals on every corner. Every step being a potential step backward.