Writer-director Juan Antin worked for 14 years to make “Pachamama,” which tells the tale of a young boy growing up in the Andes in the time of the Incas and the Spanish explorers, and now the animated film will be seen by a global audience when it debuts on Netflix on Friday, June 7.
“The idea came one day when I was at a festival in Cuba presenting my first film, ‘Mercano the Martian,’” explains Antin. “I was staring at the sea and I had a vision. I imagined all those ships coming in from Europe and Spain 500 years ago. I said, ‘Wow, I can imagine how the indigenous people saw these men arrive and thought they were gods.’ I started to imagine the different points of view that each one has of the other and thought it would be a good idea for a film.”
“Pachamama,” which had its world premiere at the Animation Is Film Festival last October, follows the adventures of a 10-year-old boy who wants to become a shaman. He goes on an adventure with his friend and her pet llama to retrieve a small golden statue confiscated from their village by an Incan overlord. The title, “Pachamama,” refers to an earth-mother goddess worshiped by the indigenous people of the Andes, and the film has an ecological theme that resonates strongly today.