Buenos Aires, 1975. Actress.
After a somewhat isolated decade, he returns to eat the screen, but now he enjoys it much more: "I have stopped punishing myself."
He stars in
, the new Movistar series.
The series gives what it promises: everyone lies, not one is saved.
It is a series that does not intend to teach anything, but that you have fun, that you have a great time.
And I think it succeeds because, moreover, it's a series full of actors, with a wonderful cast and, being so choral, at some point everyone can feel identified with one of the characters.
Because, let's see, who doesn't lie?
Have you met someone like this in your life?
We all lie.
Life is a lie, it is a theater.
Why do you lie?
Out of shame, mostly.
In the end, we all live in a slightly unstable balance that can change at the slightest.
In the series it is marvelous to see that in that urbanization of wealthy people, where it seems that everything is perfect, when suddenly something happens that upsets what is established, in this case the sexual video of a student with his teacher, all the crap that those characters had hidden just like you or I have.
We all, all of us, have things to hide, secrets that we hope will not be discovered.
Come on, tell me a secret, nobody can hear us.
No no no.
I have some wonderful little secrets, which are very cute and very funny and form a private little plot that I love to have.
And then I have a lot of less nice secrets that embarrass me and that's why I'm not able to tell them.
Less and less, I also tell you, because age makes you care less and less about many things.
Speaking of age, as a generational symbol that you were, I was shocked to see you in the series as the mother of a full-fledged uncle.
Well, look, I liked seeing myself as the mother of an 18-year-old man. I have not felt older or out of place, because in reality that role is the one that corresponds to me by age and how I am now. I have a highly developed maternal instinct, I have always dreamed of being a mother, all my life. What happens is that, of course, I have been a mother very late [her daughter, Chiara, is 4 years old] because in my head I am still 20 years old. This is a characteristic of our generation and it happens to us in general because, when I talk to my forty-something friends, we all think we are twenty-somethings. That has a wonderful part, since it allows you to have a kind of life that is very fun, but...
But now things creak when you sit on the floor and play with the children.
The reality is that there is no perfect solution, at least if you want to develop in your profession.
In my case, if I had been a young mother, I would not have been able to do certain jobs that interested me at that time, projected me and were important to grow and live from this.
There came a time when I was overwhelmed, I went to the doctor and said: "I think I'm going to freeze eggs."
And he looked at me with a sad face and replied: "But, daughter, how are you going to freeze eggs, if you're already old enough?"
And there I fell, I began to do accounts and I got to it that same day.
Did you have to park your career a lot?
I did not stop working, but I did more theater that is better reconciled.
It's what I told you before, at my daughter's school she is probably the oldest mother, but I don't see that she is an exception or that there is too much difference with many others.
Because, in the end, we have all suffered the same problem: if a woman wants to be successful in her profession, it is very difficult to do so if she has children soon.
Unfortunately, that is the reality for a woman.
My head was not ready to have children in my twenties or in my thirties.
At that time I wanted to go far, achieve things as an actress and I did not consider the possibility of having a child.
And that has happened to almost all of us.
In this society, what is rare is the other: being a young mother.
The protagonists of the series are four 40-something mothers [Irene Arcos, Miren Ibarguren, Eva Santolaria and her].
For a long time, this was a stage in the lives of women underrepresented in audiovisual fiction.
Yes, thank God that is changing.
How it is changing that in a series with this cast, with Leo Sbaraglia, with Juan Diego Botto, with Ernesto Alterio or with Jorge Bosch, we are the protagonists.
Before you were the girlfriend of one or the sister of another, you were always the something of a man, and now you are not.
There are many series with female protagonists telling very interesting stories, very real and that attract both men and women.
Has the sexuality of both women and what they call middle age also been normalized?
For example, that prototype of an older man with a young girl that has been constant on screen begins to not dominate everything.
There are more and more older women with young guys.
That is changing in real life and, little by little, it is also seen in fiction.
Like the sex itself.
Before, for women it only existed if you were 20 years old, 30 with luck, after 40 it was only the man who had sex... with those of 20. Now fiction is also evolving in this and adjusting to the reality, because I already told you that women of 40 like sex (laughs)
There is a moment at the beginning of the century when you are the actress of the moment: The son of the bride, The other side of the bed, Days of football. .. And, suddenly, you almost disappeared from the cinema.
What happened there?
It was not my decision.
There is a time when you become fashionable and do everything, but, of course, while you do everything, you are turning years old and you reach that age of thirty where, although I have a young face and I look less, you no longer fit them because You are no longer the pretty young lady and you are still not a mother.
That's what happened: there came a time when she didn't fit into the roles that were written for women.
And, well, you are still there as always in this profession: going to tryouts while they tell you no, receiving some proposals that I was no longer interested in doing and, in short, I went from having many offers to choose from to having fewer.
It was the age.
I found myself in a strip where I ceased to exist.
Did it hurt?
I assumed it. I did more theater, TV... What happens is that this doesn't happen to guys. On the contrary: the older the guy gets, the more interesting he becomes and the more handsome roles they give him. For example, in fiction I have been the girlfriend of Eduardo Noriega or Leo Sbaraglia and, suddenly, I became older for them despite the fact that in reality I am younger. From the age of thirty-something, their partners were 20-year-old actresses. It's not their fault, of course, but that's how it is, this profession is like that. Luckily, it's getting better.
How did you handle those years of success, fame and paparazzi?
I'm a bit of an oddball in this profession.
I've never considered myself a star or anything like that.
For example, now when you have told me that for a few years I was the best, I have had to make an effort to remember that it happened because, although it is true, I have never felt it that way.
I was so focused on work that I didn't experience that part of the popularity.
I am a perfectionist, which has its good side and its bad side, and I always thought that distracting myself with everything that surrounded my job, the only thing I did was subtract instead of add.
Because I never thought I would be famous, it was an unexpected consequence of my work and it caught me very off guard.
But it happened.
They went out very followed
The son of the bride
The other side of the bed
, which were a very strong boom that caught me working abroad for a year. I returned to Madrid without knowing that I was famous here and, suddenly, I had
at the door of my house. I didn't understand what was happening and I didn't handle it very well, really. I didn't get angry, I just withdrew and stayed more and more at home. That attention, that popularity, I felt like a pressure: "What do you expect from me?". The only thing I want to be on people's lips for is my work, for nothing else.
20 years have passed and the most frequent searches about you on Google are still 'Verbeke couple', 'Verbeke young', 'Verbeke satisfyer'...
It's amazing. No matter how hard you try, no matter how much you dedicate 100% to your work, there is a part of all this that, I don't know why, touches some of us and not others. Because I never looked for paparazzi to chase me or to be interested in my private life, never. But, there they were. The good thing is that there I have had the great fortune of having a family that has always given me an education based on work, effort and has kept me with my feet on the ground. That's why I feel that today I'm still the same girl I was when I started working. Now with more insecurities, yes.
With more? Don't they go away with age?
No no no. With age you have more insecurities, what happens is that you handle them better, with less drama.
Don't be ashamed to ask, Iñako (laughs).
The truth is that the Satisfyer thing was a laugh because Maribel Verdú, whom I love and who is always making jokes, when it came out, she read somewhere that it was the panacea and said: "I'm going to give a gift to my friends who They're going to be dead when it hits them."
And she sent it to a few of us to see what our reaction was, it doesn't have much more history.
And then we laughed commenting because, of course, once you have the Satisfyer you already say: "Well, let's see how this works and if it's such a big deal".
But I will tell you that I was not too interested in the famous Satisfyer, although she gave for a few laughs.
Have you felt an erotic myth?
Look, I know what happened, but I've never seen myself like this.
Look at me as I come, with a running shirt.
Seriously, I'm a normal girl who doesn't consider myself crazy at all and I don't think she gives that image.
But it is a fact that you were.
Yes and I don't know why.
I have never understood where this eroticism comes from and I admit that sometimes I have thought about it.
It already happened to me when they took me for my first movie,
A good boyfriend
The script stated that she was a very pretty girl, highly desired and very seductive, and I told the director that I couldn't play that character, that I wasn't any of that, I was very ashamed and didn't know how to do it.
And he told me: "You don't have to do anything, you have it inherent".
It must be that, but I have never been aware of it.
It is true that at that time she was young and voluptuous, but the truth is that she still surprises me.
Did you get forced into a lot of nudity?
Well... I've always negotiated all that very well because I wasn't comfortable doing something I couldn't justify. I have no problem getting naked if it makes sense, but if I feel like it's free, things change. So, from a certain point in my career, I was able to say "I'm not going to do this" and have it come out by contract. What happens is that at first I didn't have that power and they wanted to exploit that sexy image too much but, in general, I feel that fortunately I haven't had to do things that I didn't want to.
I have pulled from the newspaper library to ask you the typical clickbait political question, but you have haggled over the subject your entire career.
Yes, I have never spoken politically towards any side because I think that an actor does not have to enter into that. I think it's great that there are actors who think they have to do it, but I prefer that nobody knows anything about me.
Is Spanish cinema too politicized?
In reality, the vast majority of actors do not express their political opinions, what happens is that it is only news when someone does. I am within that majority by choice, not out of fear. Honestly, I'm so disappointed in politics that I wouldn't know who to stand for and I don't think it's something an actor should do either. In social things you can count on me for anything, but politically I'm not interested in anyone.
What would this Natalia recommend to young Natalia?
I would tell you what I have learned. I have learned to love myself more, not to punish myself so much for my excessive demands, to lower what I expect of myself... I have learned that not everyone has to like me and that there is something much more important than yourself, which is love for a son. Generosity. And, above all, that in reality nothing is as important as we think.
Did you punish yourself so much?
Oh yes. It has taken me many years to understand that it is bullshit to be so demanding. You can't punish yourself so much because you stop enjoying yourself. All that period where I was supposed to be so cool, for me it was a suffering, I didn't enjoy the success. How stupid, right? Now he would enjoy it, no doubt; then I just thought how I was going to screw up in my next movie. It didn't make any sense.
Do you enjoy being who you are now?
Yes. This job is the greatest privilege in the world.
I am very lucky, very lucky, although it took me a long time to realize it.
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