Suzana Pires Unleashes Her Creative Brilliance and Inspires Global Transformation
Miami Living Magazine is thrilled to present an exclusive interview with the multitalented Suzana Pires, an accomplished actress, writer, producer, entrepreneur, and now, an esteemed author. With her highly anticipated book, "Unleashed," set to release on August 19th, Suzana brings forth a riveting guide that not only empowers women but also calls for a transformative awakening of the human spirit. As the founder of the women's empowerment organization DONA DE SI, she has already made a profound impact on countless lives in Brazil and is now expanding her reach globally, inspiring individuals worldwide to embrace their inner strength and seize opportunities fearlessly. Amidst her awe-inspiring journey in the entertainment industry, starring in numerous films, telenovelas, and series, Suzana's creative brilliance knows no bounds. Join us as we delve into her remarkable career, the inspiration behind "Unleashed," and her relentless pursuit of breaking barriers and advocating for equality and empowerment on both the stage and the page.
MLM: Congratulations on your new book "Unleashed"! Can you tell us what inspired you to write this powerful guide and how it ties into your women's empowerment organization, Dona de Si?
SP: Thanks a lot. What inspired me was my own experience as a woman that achieved success in my field, as well as the daily work with all women empowered by the DONA DE SI organization. I've seen the struggles of real-life women and I had to write about those experiences, blending the DONA DE SI method with my professional journey. I am not profiling myself as a powerful woman, instead I show all my mistakes and how I moved on.
MLM: "Unleashed" aims to bring awareness to the feminist movement and awaken the power within. Could you share some key insights or takeaways that readers can expect from your book?
SP: Yes, it's a pleasure to talk about this issue. The first key insight is that we have three main issues that disrupt our growth. They are: work overload – we are always worried about our work, husband, and kids and culturally it is difficult to prioritize ourselves. The second issue is the oppression that we have to face every second of every day, from subtle ones to abusive ones, and then we have loneliness that brings us the weird thought that we are impostors, even if we are successful. We really need to understand how to neutralize those three issues in order to build better lives.
MLM: Your work with Dona de Si has made a significant impact on the lives of women in Brazil. How do you plan to expand this positive influence globally to help others worldwide "unleash" their own power?
SP: When I signed a contract with a US publisher, I started the expansion of this message. The next step is to translate this method to women in the US, and then start to accelerate women globally. I am working on it every day! It's been amazing because we all have the same problems; doesn´t matter if you are Brazilian, American or Japanese.
MLM: Your acting career in Brazil has been truly remarkable, with numerous successes in both film and television. How has your journey in the entertainment industry influenced the themes and messages you convey in "Unleashed"?
SP: Everything that I wrote or acted in film or television in Brazil I took care to bring an important message to women. This has always been my key artist issue. I´ve started doing that as a public figure with my actions and I expand that to my world vision.
MLM: As Brazil's first female showrunner, you've broken barriers and achieved significant milestones. How do you see your role as a trailblazer and advocate for women's empowerment in the entertainment world?
SP: I am the first actress who is also a showrunner. My role is to produce, write and act, always requesting women´s inclusion and expanding female narratives in film. When I meet new writers, directors and actresses I can hire them to work with me. I've had a lot of “fights” with the established players. At the beginning, in 2005, it was a war, but now, almost 20 years later, they respect me and buy my series or movies. Now, the game is a little better for me in Brazil and even better in America.
MLM: In "Unleashed," you emphasize taking control of one's destiny and creating opportunities. Could you share a personal experience where you applied these principles to your own life and career?
SP: Yes, creating opportunities is what I most love to do in life! I worked for the third biggest tv network in the world for 24 years but when my material was no longer considered good, I had a meeting where I heard the craziest thing ever. My boss said to me that the issue wasn’t the big numbers that I had, but my happiness!!! My joy was the reason that my team was so tied to me and that was a problem for them. What?!?! So, I said to my boss that my joy, my happiness and my competence wasn't for sale and we ended the long contract six months later. I was super sad, but I decided to keep working on my material in English. Six months later, a British studio bought my material and they brought me to Los Angeles to work for them. One year later, I am based here, working (now on strike). That´s a journey that I am super proud of because I've kept my happiness, even when I am sad. Self-respect and creating opportunity are the key to keeping your dignity in such a crazy world.
ML: You're also an accomplished writer and executive producer. How do you balance these different roles, and do you find that your various creative pursuits complement each other in any way?
SP: It took me a long time to understand all those roles and to balance them in my routine. Now, I have some rules. For example: the actress is the boss and she needs one project a year, the writer is the one who brings the idea to the paper and the producer is the alchemist, who is going to bring what is in the paper to reality. It is a lot of work but after all these years I have long term partners to make this work. To have a career with this kind of excellence I have chosen not to have kids.
MLM: "Unleashed" is particularly focused on helping Latina women, but you mention that all women and men can benefit from its message. What universal elements in your book do you believe will resonate with a broad and diverse audience?
SP: Yes, it is for all women because we have one thing universally in common: we are exhausted with all our social roles. UNLEASHED is not a guide that will tell you how to live, but to remind you that you are alive.
MLM: With your writing work, what future projects or themes are you excited to explore, and how do you see your voice contributing to the evolving landscape of entertainment content?
SP: I can contribute by making room for women in any work space. Not only with my behavior, but bringing content such as UNLEASHED that will help each one of us to find our own strength. I have a lot of great future projects, but for now I am focused on UNLEASHED and picketing with WGA and SAG AFTRA. First, our labor rights, right?
Photographer: Ben Cope
Stylist: Anna Schilling
Hair/Makeup: Olaf Derlig