We’ve talked about this movie for the mamás before, Girl in Progress which opens today for Mother’s Day weekend! This compelling and funny movie about Grace (Eva Mendez) and her daughter Ansiedad (Cierra Ramirez) is relatable on so many levels.
Grace is a young mother who never got the chance to grow up and mature. She is almost a girl herself, and at times her daughter Ansiedad seems to show more maturity. As flawed as Grace is she is also a hard working mother who loves her daughter. She works two jobs to make sure Ansiedad is getting the best education. As Grace is caught up working two jobs and trying to keep a relationship with her boyfriend, she doesn’t realize she is emotionally neglecting her daughter.
Ansiedad, like her name suggests, is full of the teenage angst and desperate to leave her childhood and her mother behind. So she sets out to create her own coming of age story to speed up the process to maturity and independence. As a daughter it is easy to relate to Ansiedad’s character, as many of us went to through a stage in our young lives where we thought our parents just didn’t fit in. But of course, we soon realize how much our moms sacrifice for us and how lucky we are to have them.
So what does the cast have to say about their own mamás? We got the chance to meet and interview the cast of the Girl in Progress and, of course, the conversation was bound to end up with stories about the actor’s own mothers.
Eva Mendez, Cierra Ramirez, and Espinoza Paz Talk About Their Mamás
“I’ve always been attracted to mother-daughter stories. I’m really close to my mom, really close. She’s hugely influential in my life and part of my success I’ve obtained because I wanted to pay her back for everything …I’m so thankful for her apoyo, for her support and her love…” -Eva Mendez
Did she sacrifice a lot for you career?
“Absolutely, but even more specific than that you know she sacrificed coming to this country for my brothers and sisters, you know what I mean? But being the only one born in the United States I felt that it was my responsibility, I felt like everyone else had an excuse, everyone else had to struggle so much: my brothers and sisters when they first came to this country; my parents – they were outsiders, they were immigrants. A mi mis padres siempre me llamaron la americanita…Eve-e la americanita… so growing up with that what it did was it instilled this sort of a set of beliefs in me that were fundamental in being successful. Plus the belief that my parents were like..tú puedes hacer lo que tú quieras , tú estas en este país… this is were you dream big! Follow your dreams and that’s how I was raised, so I really, really believe that everything I give back I give back to my mom. That’s it. It all goes back to her.” -Eva Mendez
What were some other role models that you had growing up? Or now that you look to?
“My big sisters, absolutely, but I have to say my mom takes the cake on it. You know I still have girlfirends that I made when I was twelve years old. We’re still together ..living.. you know we have different lives but we were a foursome. We called ourselves D.E.S.K.: Debbie, Eva, Shawn,and Karla. Ridicolous. DESK. We though it was really cool when we were 15. We called our selves desk! Do to me it´s really about keeping that female support system.” -Eva Mendez
[To Cierra] What about your parents? Are they strict are they lenient?
“My mom is pretty lenient, because we have that buddy-buddy type relationship I can tell her anything, but then she’s still a motherly-advice giver she’s always there for me. I have to say I don’t mess with my dad. He’s just strict.” -Cierra Ramirez
When asked about his success as a singer and now his movie debut Espinoza Paz said his mother had a lot to do with it.
“The truth is I think that my mom has a lot to do with it. I think that has helped me a lot. [Her] perseverance and also that my mom, may she rest in peace, she would pray and I don’t know maybe God heard her and said I’ll let you be what your mom wanted you to be” - Espinoza Paz
About the theme of the movie what can you tell us? A difficult relationship between mother and daughter. Did you grow up with your grandmother?
“No, with my mom. I was about 14 or 15 when she died. My mom was always very affectionate with me. I was kind of mischievous and rebellious but we were all that way. In the ranch all the kids where like that. We didn’t listen to our mom but my mom was always affectionate and understanding. Always happy, always cheerful and glad. And she would pull my ears but nothing past that. She would worry because I wouldn’t behave but nothing past that. Aside from that it was a small town and there was no way to get out of there. Whatever mischief I got into half an hour later everyone knew…” -Espinoza Paz
Girl in Progress opens today! You can follow on Facebook and check out videos with sneak peeks of the movie there.