Natalia Leite and Alexandra Roxo are trying to make your dreams come true. Together the filmmakers are Purple Milk, a production company that is currently editing their collaborative feature Bare, starring Dianna Agron and Paz de la Huerta (Boardwalk Empire) as lovers.
“[This] young girl, played by Dianna, comes from Nevada and she meets this older woman, played by Paz, an enigmatic figure and they have a relationship that’s like two souls connecting,” Natalia said. “They don’t really figure it out at first, I think. But it’s more like they’re drawn to each other and Paz, the Pepper character, convinces her to get a job at a truck stop strip club and it gets wild from there.”
Natalia and Alexandra said they weren’t aware of how big of a lesbian following Dianna Agron had from her role on Glee, but as soon as she was cast, they found out.
“I was so surprised,” Natalia said. “We did not know that she was huge in the lesbian community. I think it was actually better that we didn’t know because it was based on her as an actress and literally a few weeks later after shooting, we were like, ‘Holy shit! There are people who have devoted their lives to her.’ It’s really like almost kind of a funny bonus for the movie.”
“There was like a period of two weeks where people knew Dianna was in it and knew the concept but didn’t know who her lover was going to be,” Alexandra said, “and we were getting all these tweets of people like ‘hashtag petition for Lea Michele to be Dianna’s lesbian lover in Bare.'”
“I think a lot of it is about someone carving out their own path in life instead of accepting what’s predetermined for them,” Natalia said. “We have control over our future, in a way. We might have been born into this family or social class or economical situation—whatever it is, living in this town is very much going by the book, and she finds a possibility for another life in a world she never thought was an option for her. And just kind of taking a chance and making some choices, being proactive despite of the fact it’s the right or the wrong thing to do. It’s not like black and white. She’s figuring out what her own path is.”
“Be Here Nowish, we worked on for about a year,” Alexandra said. “We did a Kickstarter and really involved a lot of our community and friends in New York and L.A. to help make that happen. It was really a labor of love. From there we premiered and did some film festivals and had press online, then we worked on another Vice project together called Every Woman, which is another original production we came up together that we shot the pilot for and now we’re developing the season for that. The concept is when we go to different women’s jobs or roles and kind of investigate the sexuality and femininity within that space.”
“That was very fun, I was really happy that Natalia my friend and collaborator cast me,” she said.
Bare will be less comical than Be Here Nowish, which followed the two friends as they moved from New York to L.A. for a spiritual retreat, as Natalia says it’s definitely a drama.
“It’s more of a serious film. There’s comedic moments, for sure,” she said. “It’s more of a dark comedy, with irony and not just straight up gags.”
It’s a drama, Natalia said, that follows a strange but sexy relationship.
“It’s kind of an add romance in that they’re like oil and water. They’re such different characters in the story but they fall for each other and sort of change each other’s lives,” Natalia said. “Alexandra and I pulled together the financing, found another producer to start collaborating with, a local New Mexico producer, Chad Burris, because we knew we wanted to shoot there, in a small desert town.”
“We’re not out to try and make statements about anything,” she said. “We’re just shining lights, like this is our community and this is our lives. We’re just having fun with it and showing this is normal for us.”
Alexandra agreed. “I also think Natalia and I have, from a younger age, always investigated our sexuality and femininity and feminism in general in our work. And so it’s just a part of also what drew us to each other—we didn’t have the same love for science fiction or horror movies or period pieces. We wanted to tell stories about women that are complex and interesting and that we didn’t feel were often seen in the media. There are so many great shows out right now with complex female characters, it’s really grown over the last few years, which is really cool. But I think for us it’s been a through line so far for our work. For now we feel strongly about creating strong female characters.”
Bare is currently in post-production and is poised for a 2015 festival premiere. In the meantime, check out their first episode of Every Woman on Vice, “Truck Stop Stripper.”