Not all fan tributes are heard or seen by the celebrities they’re directed towards. But one audience member’s story on her Tumblr blog caught the attention of Diego Luna, and he isn’t afraid to admit that reading it made him “emotional.”
Last night (Jan. 3), the 37-year-old Mexico-born actor, who plays Cassian Andor in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, shared 27-year-old Perl’s heartfelt tale on Twitter. The anecdote details her experience watching Rogue One with her father, and how moved both of them were by the film’s representational cast and the choice to employ Diego’s accent.
The blog opens: “I took my father to see Rogue One today. I’ve wanted to take him for a while. I wanted my Mexican father, with his thick Mexican accent, to experience what it was like to see a hero in a blockbuster film, speak the way he does. And although I wasn’t sure if it was going to resonate with him, I took him anyway.”
It continues: “When Diego Luna’s character came onscreen and started speaking, my dad nudged me and said, ‘He has a heavy accent.’ … When the film was over and we were walking to the car, he turns to me and says, ‘Did you notice that he had an accent?’ I said, ‘Yeah dad, just like yours.’ Then my dad asked me if the film had made a lot of money. I told him it was the second highest grossing film of 2016 despite it only being out for 18 days in 2016 (since new year just came around).”
Perl’s blog winds up: “He then asked me if people liked the film. I told him that it had a huge following online and great reviews. He then asked me why Diego Luna hadn’t changed his accent and I told him that Diego has openly talked about keeping his accent and how proud he is of it. And my dad was silent for a while and then said, ‘And he was a main character.’ I said, ‘He was.’ And my dad was so happy. As we drove home he started telling me about other Mexican actors that he thinks should be in movies in America. Representation matters.”
Perl’s story was retweeted over 22,000 times in less than 12 hours.
When Diego shared it, he included the following caption along with the full note: “I got emotional reading this!” Check it out below.
What do you think about Perl’s story? Should Rogue One — which also features Felicity Jones, Ben Mendelsohn, Mads Mikkelsen, Forest Whitaker, Alan Tudyk, Riz Ahmed, Donnie Yen and Genevieve O’Reilly — be praised for its “representation” of diverse individuals? Share your opinions with us! ~Matthew Pariselli
— diego luna (@diegoluna_) 4 January 2017