Check out our interview with Venezuelan actress Ariana Ron Pedrique who is best known for her lead role in the Sony hit series, ‘Rosario Tijeras’ (#1 on Netflix LATAM & Mexico), Ariana is now starring in her debut feature film, ‘Ayar’, which premiered earlier this year at SXSW and will release theatrically and VOD on November 26th.
‘Ayar’ is directed by Emmy Award winning director, Floyd Russ, and is Ariana’s first break into the U.S. film industry. The actress not only stars as the lead of the indie film, but helped to write her role, allowing her to fully develop her character from a creative and personal point of view. While filming, the actress had to tackle one of her largest fears – cockroaches – as she worked through a scene filled with a nest of them. The amount of courage it takes one to face their largest fears head on is a strength in of itself, but to do it for the sake of your craft showcases the passion that Ariana has not only for this film, but for her career as an actress. As one of the top actresses in Latin America, Ariana has truly showcased the depth of her skills and creativity and is excited to bring her talent to a new market!
Follow Ariana @arironpedrique
Hi Ariana, please tell us a little about you?
I was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela, to a Lawyer and an Architect. Known as Ari among my family and friends, I am the youngest of four siblings and –according to them– the craziest of them all. I was lucky to grow up in Caracas surrounded by a loving family and many different types of pets –including a snake. I’ve been an animal lover since I can remember.
Describe yourself in 3 words?
I am a dreamer, an optimist, and my loved ones would say I am also a bit crazy.
How did you get started into acting?
The first time I stood on a stage was when I was three years old. The school I attended from my first years of life until my college years – known as El Colegio Emil Friedman – always offered us, students, the opportunity to connect with our artistic side from a very early age. My first memorable experience as a performer was when I was eleven years old, and I played the role of Juliet in Shakespeare’s iconic play. But it wasn’t until I was invited to join the Performing Arts School CEFAT located in Mexico City that I became aware of my passion for acting.
Mexico did not only provide me with an exemplary education as an actor but also offered me my firsts professional roles on TV as well as Theater. After almost a decade of residing in Mexico City, I decided to keep pursuing my dream in the US. Ayar is my cinema debut.
How has this changed your life?
Acting has changed my life for the better, in every possible way. It has given me purpose, perspective, and unimaginable joy.
What is the best and worst part of being an actress?
My favorite part is that I get to see the world through someone else’s eyes. It gives me perspective. It teaches me empathy. It also provides me with joy, bravery, hope, love, awareness. I feel an emotional growth every time I interpret a new complex character as Ayar is. I get to live a thousand lives in a lifetime. A good story can be the most accurate mirror to your own life. And being part of this world, is a gift to me. In simple words, it makes me happy. And for me, I find the most challenging part of being an actor is the uncertainty. Although, this can be exciting as well since it might mean a world of possibilities.
How do you prepare for a role?
I immerse myself in this character’s reality, and I wholeheartedly believe I am this person. To me, it is basically the make-believe game we used to play when we were kids. You must believe with total conviction you are someone else. And in my opinion, this is the most amazing game there is. As an actor, you are safely living somebody else’s life. Then, at the end of the day, you go back to being who you are. And yet, you’ve lived, learned, and gained perspective from living someone else’s life. And I love that.
Tell us about your work on feature film “Ayar?”
Ayar is a Latina who is tormented with guilt over leaving her newborn child behind to pursue her dream of becoming a singer. After five years of an unsuccessful career in Vegas, my character is determined to return home and mend the relationship with her daughter Jasmine (Calliah Sophie Estrada) and Mother Renata (Vilma Vega). But when Renata refuses to allow her to have contact with Jasmine due to COVID, my character is forced to grapple with past mistakes and peel back the layers of who she has become to figure out who she should be.
Playing the role of Ayar was a dream come true for me. Ever since I became an actor, the whole reason why I moved to LA in the first place; was because I wanted to be part of a story like this. Play a character like this. Playing Ayar was terrifying and exciting at the same time. Ayar made me stronger in so many ways, and most importantly, it reminded me to keep going forward because my dreams are valid. Anything is possible.
And about your lead role in the Sony hit series “Rosario Tijeras?”
I absolutely loved filming Rosario Tijeras. I played the lead antagonist role, Paula Restrepo. I remember feeling it was a breath of fresh air. It was my first time working with Sony Entertainment Television, with a wonderful cast and two acclaimed Directors in Mexico City –Alejandro Lozano and Chava Cartas. For me, it was a dream come true. It was such a supportive working environment, and I remember we all loved what we were doing.
What kind of roles do you like or would like to play and why?
I love bold, multidimensional characters. I love real, raw, and profound roles. Ayar is, without a doubt, one of them. I find portraying these roles inspiring, liberating, challenging, and extremely entertaining.
What is the most rewarding part of your work?
When I allow myself to play –fully immersed in the character– it’s what I enjoy the most—without judgments, just being there. It’s one of the best feelings I’ve ever felt in my life. I also profoundly enjoy seeing how much a role can inspire so many people.
What’s your advice for the newer actresses?
When you finally make the courageous decision to pursue this dream, do it without expectations but with huge hopes. Work harder than anyone. This will give you the confidence to believe in yourself so much that others have no choice but to believe as well.
What would say are the greatest lessons you learned so far in this business?
I’ve learned to trust my instincts, to not be afraid of saying ‘no’. I’ve also learned how important it is to relax and enjoy the process. And last but not least: to go for it, especially if it scares you!
What book should every entrepreneur read?
A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle.
What’s next for Ariana Ron Pedrique in the last months of 2021 and for 2022?
We are currently in the postproduction of a film that will come out next year, and I can’t wait to tell you more about it. I am also looking forward to enjoying the holidays with my family. It’s been an amazing year so far. I want to celebrate it, and I can’t wait to see what 2022 brings!
What is your favorite healthy food?
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve always loved a great salad.
And your favorite cheat food?
I love pizza!
What is your own definition of happiness?
To me, happiness is that subtle joy that you feel when you’re not worrying about the future or lingering in the past, and instead, you’re present in the now, at ease. Knowing that everything that’s happening is perfect exactly as it is.
If you could meet someone living or dead, who would it be and why?
I would love to hug my Abuelita Lori. Even before I was born, she passed away, but my dad always told me how much she dreamed of meeting me. I’ve always felt a special connection with her, and I believe she has always taken care of me.
Best advice ever given?
One thing at a time.
Where we can follow you?
Book: A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle
Quote: “Success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill.
Movie: This is a tricky question… I love so many great films. Silver Linings Playbook by David O. Russell. It’s Complicated by Nancy Meyers.
Tv Series: Breaking Bad.
Favorite Food: Cachapas – a delicious Venezuelan dish.
Travel Destination: Santorini, Greece.
Sports Team: Leylah Fernandez. Hope this counts, lol.