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INTERVIEW – ‘Blue Beetle’ Director Ángel Manuel Soto

Copy of Copy of Shortcomings min

Ahead of DC’s cinematic reboot in 2025 with Superman: Legacy, the first DCU character makes his debut in Blue Beetle. Jaime Reyes (Blue Beetle) has been confirmed by James Gunn to be the first DCU character.

Recently, I had the opportunity to see the film and sit down with Blue Beetle director Ángel Manuel Soto. Blue Beetle is the first Latino live-action superhero film, which in and of itself is very special. Aside from being a dedicated, annoyingly loud DC fan, I was extremely excited and moved by seeing my culture brought to life through the Reyes family. With Blue Beetle, we’re no longer just the comedic relief side characters, or the sidekicks, but the leads. 

It was a pleasure getting to speak with Soto. We spoke about his hopes for the film, and his inspirations. He confirmed two anime references that I recognized in the film, and also talked about what inspired the city’s design! After mentioning how authentically the Latine community is represented in the film, Soto shared a personal experience that inspired a moment that happens to Jaime in the film.

Watch our full conversation below and watch Blue Beetle in theaters August 18th. Tickets are on sale now.

Editor’s Note: This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labor of the writers and actors currently on strike, the movie being covered here wouldn’t exist. To support the WGA and SAG-AFTRA, donate to the Entertainment Community Fund.

POCculture.com Interview with Blue Beetle Director Ángel Manuel Soto

About Blue Beetle

From Warner Bros. Pictures comes the feature film “Blue Beetle,” marking the DC Super Hero’s first time on the big screen. The film, directed by Angel Manuel Soto, stars Xolo Maridueña in the title role as well as his alter ego, Jaime Reyes.

Recent college grad Jaime Reyes returns home full of aspirations for his future, only to find that home is not quite as he left it. As he searches to find his purpose in the world, fate intervenes when Jaime unexpectedly finds himself in possession of an ancient relic of alien biotechnology: the Scarab. When the Scarab suddenly chooses Jaime to be its symbiotic host, he is bestowed with an incredible suit of armor capable of extraordinary and unpredictable powers, forever changing his destiny as he becomes the Super Hero BLUE BEETLE.

Starring alongside Maridueña (“Cobra Kai”) are Adriana Barraza (“Rambo: Last Blood,” “Thor”) as Jaime’s grandmother, Nana, Damían Alcázar (“Narcos,” “Narcos: Mexico”) as his father, Elpidia Carrillo (“Mayans M.C.,” the “Predator” films) as his mother, Bruna Marquezine (“Maldivas,” “God Save the King”) as Jenny Kord, Raoul Max Trujillo (the “Sicario” films, “Mayans M.C.”) as Carapax, with Oscar winner Susan Sarandon (“Monarch,” “Dead Man Walking”) as Victoria Kord, and George Lopez (the “Rio and “Smurf” franchises) as Jaime’s Uncle Rudy. The film also stars Belissa Escobedo (“American Horror Stories,” “Hocus Pocus 2”) as Jaime’s sister, Milagro, and Harvey Guillén (“What We Do in the Shadows”) as Dr. Sanchez.

Soto (“Charm City Kings,” “The Farm”) directs from a screenplay by Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer (“Miss Bala”), based on characters from DC. John Rickard and Zev Foreman are producing, with Walter Hamada, Galen Vaisman and Garrett Grant serving as executive producers.

The director’s creative team behind the scenes includes director of photography Pawel Pogorzelski (“Midsommar,” “Hereditary”), production designer John Billington (“Bad Boys for Life”), editor Craig Alpert (“Deadpool 2,” “The Lost City”), Oscar-nominated costume designer Mayes C. Rubeo (“Jojo Rabbit,” the “Thor” films), visual effects supervisor Kelvin McIlwain (“The Suicide Squad,” “Aquaman”) and composer Bobby Krlic (“Midsommar,” the “Snowpiercer” series).

A Warner Bros. Pictures Presentation, a Safran Company Production, “Blue Beetle” soars into theaters only internationally beginning August 2023 and in North America August 18, 2023. It will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures.

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Jorgie is a pop culture fan and contributor at POCculture.com. He loves learning about visual effects, production, film, and art, and how they all come together to make films like Star Wars.

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