Luis Zahera: “I really enjoyed 'La Unidad' because I met the person I was going to play”

The vast majority of occasions in which an actor faces the challenge of building his own character, with a specific character and experiences that have shaped him, cannot be seen in any mirror: he elaborates it in loneliness with the directions of the director and the screenwriter. It is very seldom possible for him, in addition to internalizing his nature, to see himself reflected in a person of flesh and blood to learn of his idiosyncrasy and even of the way in which he moves and gestures, whether or not it is necessary for the viewer to be recognizable. And this is the opportunity for the interpreters of La Unidad (Dani de la Torre and Alberto Marini, 2020), the new Movistar Plus miniseries.

Work with the creators of 'The Unity'

As its creators told Hypertextual , the series team was in direct collaboration with the agents of the General Information Police Station , which “has the record for the world's jihadist arrests”, and for actors such as Marian Álvarez ( One Hundred Years of Forgiveness ) and Luis Zahera ( Cell 211 ), the Yours in Unity has been an enriching experience . To get involved in the project, Álvarez appeared at the casting and was chosen to play Miriam. “The truth is that, when I read the script, I flipped so much that I can only say thanks,” he says. Zahera, on the other hand, “had already worked with Dani de la Torre, with Vaca Films and with Movistar”, so he “played with an advantage” in being chosen for the role of Sergio.

la unidad luis zahera marian álvarez entrevista

The interpreter , with a Goya for his Cabrera of The kingdom (Rodrigo Sorogoyen, 2018), considers the director “passionate about this work” and “trusts very much in actors; as he says: «I have enough problems dealing with 150 people on this shoot as to tell you above you what you have to do. You do it your way, solve it, live it, have fun ». With which, it is very easy, very pleasant to work with Dani ”. So it allows them to build their characters autonomously, and Marian Álvarez , who received another Goya award for his good work in La wound (Fernando Franco, 2013), believes that, “when you read the script of The unit and you see that it is absolutely clear about your character, everything makes it much easier for you. It shows that they have had a beastly job of documentation. ”

The real policemen behind the characters of Marian Álvarez and Luis Zahera

“And that they have been living with these police officers for years,” he adds, “and they have been advising them, with which the character is very well built. And then we were lucky enough to be able to meet them, and I discarded all kinds of cliché or image that I asked to have regarding female police officers —I had never played one—, and I was able to elaborate my character from a much more interesting and more real point ”. From the inspector on which her Miriam is based, she is struck by “her femininity and her joviality”, the joy and passionateness that she is with her work “, and that gave her the key to” flee from the tormented part of the Police: If you like your profession, why don't you have fun with it, even if it's dangerous? ”

Luis Zahera, in turn, very much enjoyed: “Mainly because I met the person I was going to interpret and, for me, that was so novel… He has something a little plethoric in his real life, and it is what we try to reflect ”. And they became good friends and keep in touch. And the actors were very surprised that he and his colleagues “became very interested in his work” in the cinema: “A super-specialized policeman in some very complex things that, like Hannibal, the Cannibal, in El silencio de los lambs [Jonathan Demme, 1991] with Clarice Starling, I almost wanted to know what she dreamed of. How would a policeman be interested in the actors' work? ”. And so was his amazement, which he could well feel again because both Marian Álvarez and Luiz Zahera would be willing to retake their characters, Miriam and Sergio, the plethoric, for another season of Unit.