Harvey Guillén and Ariana DeBose: Friends Off-Screen, Foes On-Screen

Harvey Guillén; Ariana DeBose. PHOTO: GETTY (2)

Harvey Guillén and Ariana DeBose, already friends before, found themselves pleasantly reunited on the set of Disney’s Wish. Guillén, who plays Gabo, shares how DeBose reached out with excitement upon learning they would be working together. Despite the secrecy typical of casting announcements, DeBose’s genuine enthusiasm upon discovering Guillén’s involvement added an extra layer of delight to their collaboration. The unexpected alignment of their professional paths allowed them to fulfill a long-standing desire to work together, creating a seamless transition from friendship to co-stars.

Disney Magic: Bringing Friends Together

Harvey Guillén reveals that both he and DeBose had expressed a desire to collaborate for years, and it was Disney’s casting decision that unexpectedly fulfilled their wish. Despite playing characters at odds in the film, Guillén emphasizes the joy of collaborating with a real-life friend. The magic of Disney not only granted their professional wish but also strengthened their bond as friends. Their shared journey from mutual admiration to on-screen adversaries highlights the serendipitous nature of their collaboration, underscoring the role of fate in bringing kindred spirits together.

Ariana DeBose’s character Asha and Harvey Guillén’s character Gabo (center) in Disney’s Wish (2023). PHOTO : DISNEY

Navigating Character Dynamics

In Wish, Harvey Guillén’s character Gabo and DeBose’s Asha share a complex friendship, mirroring their real-life camaraderie. Guillén reflects on the challenge of embodying Gabo’s grumpy persona while maintaining the warmth of his friendship with DeBose’s character. The dynamic between Gabo and Asha serves as a testament to their on-screen chemistry, fueled by their genuine affection for each other off-screen. Guillén’s ability to seamlessly transition between Gabo’s gruff exterior and his underlying loyalty to Asha speaks to his versatility as an actor, adding depth and authenticity to their on-screen relationship.

The Art of Separation: Actor vs. Character

Despite their friendship off-screen, Guillén underscores the importance of distinguishing between his real self and his character, especially when portraying moments of conflict. He highlights the depth of Gabo’s character and the underlying humanity that guides his actions. Guillén’s portrayal of Gabo’s internal struggle, torn between his grumpy demeanor and his genuine care for Asha, showcases his ability to convey complex emotions with nuance and sincerity. By immersing himself fully into Gabo’s persona while maintaining a clear separation from his own identity, Guillén brings depth and authenticity to his performance, enriching the film’s narrative with layers of complexity and depth.

Exploring New Territories: Role Satisfaction

For Guillén, portraying Gabo presented a departure from his previous roles, offering an opportunity to showcase his versatility as an actor. He relishes the complexity of Gabo’s character, which allows him to delve into themes of compassion and moral integrity. Guillén’s portrayal of Gabo as a multifaceted character, grappling with his own inner turmoil while navigating his relationship with Asha, demonstrates his ability to embody complex roles with depth and authenticity. By embracing the challenges of portraying Gabo, Guillén adds richness and dimension to the film’s narrative, elevating the story with his compelling performance.

Stepping Up: Friendship and Humanity

As Wish unfolds, Guillén’s character Gabo exemplifies the power of friendship and the inherent goodness within individuals, regardless of outward appearances. Guillén emphasizes the universal theme of humanity that resonates throughout the film, underscoring the importance of empathy and kindness. Through Gabo’s journey of self-discovery and personal growth, Guillén highlights the transformative power of friendship and the enduring bonds that unite individuals in times of adversity. By portraying Gabo as a symbol of compassion and resilience, Guillén reinforces the film’s message of hope and solidarity, inspiring audiences to embrace the power of human connection and empathy in their own lives.

In conclusion, Harvey Guillén and Ariana DeBose’s dynamic friendship off-screen enriches their on-screen portrayal of conflicted characters in Wish. Through their collaboration, they exemplify the transformative power of storytelling and the enduring bonds of friendship. As they navigate the complexities of their characters’ relationship, Guillén and DeBose showcase their talent and versatility as actors, infusing the film with depth, authenticity, and emotional resonance.