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South By Southwest 2014 Interview -- FOR THOSE ABOUT TO ROCK director Rodrigo Sánchez

For Those About To Rock - At SxSW 2014
by Jason Whyte

“Rodrigo and Gabriela, two young Mexicans who decided to do what they love the most, and against all odds could make their wildest dreams come true. They decided to try luck in Europe, changed their electric guitars for acoustic ones to travel lightly. They had performed for Barack Obama, TV shows hosted by Craig Ferguson, Jools Holland and Jay Leno to name some. And created music for TV shows and soundtracks like Breaking Dan, Pirates of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, among others. Consider famous international Mexican artists…but unpopular in their own country of Mexico.” Director Rodrigo Sánchez on For Those About To Rock. The story of Rodrigo y Gabriela which screens at this year's South By Southwest Film Festival.

Is this your first SxSW/Austin experience and are you going to attend your screenings?

It’s my 7th year being part of the SXSW experience. For the past six years we’ve held at SXSW our WARP Showcase and 2014 will be our seventh year. I’ll be attending “For Those About To Rock. The story of Rodrigo y Gabriela” SXSW Film World Premier March 15th at 2PM on the Paramount, and it’s my first time to attend the SXSW Film. Looking forward to it.

Your favorite barbecue/food in the city?


What do you love the most about showing movies in Austin and Austin in general?

Movie theaters in general and Paramount premieres.

Tell me a bit about your background and how you became a filmmaker. Also what have you worked on in the past?

I’m a Mexican music journalist, TV and radio host, producer and entrepreneur. For the past 8 years my team and I, have been generating content for different formats like: TV, radio, press and digital. We’ve build an expertise and reputation of the prime content and production agency in Latin- America. Movies are an essential part of my life as same as music. When I realized that I can put together both energies through my work in a story I discovered almost by accident, it was natural to tried out. I´m happy about that decision. I got involved on this my first film project because of music and circumstances in life. I learned that you don´t choose real stories, they choose you. Rod and Gab story chose me in several ways.

How did this whole project come together from your perspective?

I saw Rodrigo and Gabriela at the Radio Music Hall of New York, a show in which the classic marquee anticipated as a Sold Out. When I got into the show, I met with fifteen minutes of Rob Trujillo from Metallica playing with them; then, the Jazz legend Al Di Meola and some other artists. With the purpose of filming them that weekend
for my Glasto documentary, I went with them to Brussels where I saw 15 thousand people chanting in chorus their songs, which I thought was amazing because Rodrigo and Gabriela play with no lyrics. The next day the number grew to 25 thousand when we went to Paris where they were treated as authentic Rock stars. Before we got to Glastonbury I had already decided that the documentary had to be about them, about Rodrigo and Gabriela.

What was the biggest challenge, or challenges, in making the film?

To realize that I was making a film, and then face it and make it happen in all the best ways possible.

If you had to pick a single favourite moment out of the entire production, what would it be?

Final editing for final cut. Seeing all the road of four years working on it resulting in 78 minutes working up on the screen.

What keeps you going while making a movie? What drives you? How much coffee?

More whiskey that coffee. Telling the story for the world and for my country is real motivation at least for me.

I would love to know about the technical side of the film, your relationship to the director of photography, what the movie was shot on and why it was decided to be filmed this way.

I had several people involved on photography side on my film. Some of them real lens genius and some of them were there at the right moment, but at some point a great and talented pal, Rubén Márquez, helped me to unify a photo concept as well as editing process. He is my most important partner on this crime.

[i[What are you looking forward to the most about showing your movie at SXSW?

Just be there and know that now is real.

After the film screens at South By Southwest, where is the film going to show next? Anywhere you would like it to screen?

Several festivals around the world, and I would like to have some theatricals in key countries for the story, especially México.

Alamo Drafthouse and Paramount theaters in Austin aside, if you could show this movie in any cinema in the world, which one would you choose and why?

Any movie theater in my country. This is my first movie!

What would you say or do to someone who is talking or texting during a screening of your film?

Are you recommending my movie?

There are a lot of up and coming filmmakers both at SXSW and reading our site. What would you want to tell them if they are aspiring to become a filmmaker?

Just make it happen, whatever it takes. Don´t miss this amazing chance of losing control because of a good story to tell.

This is one of the many films screening at the 2014 SXSW in Austin, Texas between March 7-15. For more information on the film’s screening, point your browser to

Jason Whyte,
Twitter: @jasonwhyte / Facebook: jasonwhyte / Instagram: jasonrcwhyte

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originally posted: 03/07/14 17:38:09
last updated: 03/07/14 17:38:43
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