In five episodes, “Brutal Pact – The Assassination of Daniella Perez”, available on HBO Max, revisits with a keen eye a crime that stopped the country 30 years ago: the brutal murder of Daniella Perez, actress and daughter of writer Gloria Perez, by actor Guilherme de Pádua and his then wife, Paula Thomaz (who today introduces herself as Paula Peixoto).
Based on the records of the process that condemned Guilherme and Paula for the crime, the documentary series goes beyond retelling the story that figures in the popular imagination. The production starts from the premise of eliminating “versions”, making the Court’s conclusions on the case prevail – in addition to clarifying old questions, such as the type of weapon actually used in the crime.
In an interview with splash, Gloria Perez says that the documentary leaves no doubt. “It’s not about presenting versions anymore. It’s the process that speaks and it’s only through it that you can understand what happened and why two psychopaths were convicted of double murder.”
Among the episodes that come to light in the series are the actually accidental casting of Guilherme de Pádua for the soap opera “De Corpo e Alma”, in a role written for Alexandre Frota, and the saga faced by friends and family, especially by mother Gloria Perez, to elucidate the crime and then preserve Daniella’s memory.
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Unlike what was widely propagated at the time of the crime, the weapon used was not a pair of scissors, but a dagger. The thesis of death by scissors was presented by the defense of Guilherme de Pádua and Paula Thomaz in an attempt to show that the murder was about something passionate, which happened by chance, after all, scissors are an object that anyone could have with them in the car. or in the bag.
They carried a dagger to the crime scene, however, supports the thesis that the crime was premeditated. In addition to the weapon, the tampering with the license plate of the car driven by Guilherme de Pádua and the ambush at a gas station also led to the conclusion that the two planned the death of Daniella Perez.
Ten days before the murder of Daniella Perez, Guilherme de Pádua and Paula Thomaz tattooed each other’s names together. Until then, a “common” act between a couple in love, if it weren’t for a but: the tattoo was made on the actor’s penis and the groin of his then wife.
The documentary does not show images, but mentions several times that the two had intimate tattoos. In fact, Guilherme wanted to show the writing to the police when he was arrested, as a way of “proving his love” for Paula.
In addition to the tattoo, there are other details that may indicate that the murderers would have participated in some kind of “ritual”. At no point does the documentary give absolute certainty that the intention was to have Daniella Perez as a sacrifice, but it shows signs that it could be something “ritualistic”.
“Brutal Pact” hints that the two would have actually made a “pact” between them – the tattoo being one of the ways to seal it. A specialist explains that the fact that the crime took place on the last Monday of the year, the last day of the full moon, within a circle of burnt grass, with a lock of Daniella’s hair having been ripped out and her wedding ring gone, could be indicate a kind of ritual.
This “sacrifice” is not attributed to any religion, as the documentary emphasizes several times when dealing with the subject.
As it is based on the case file, the production intends to overturn any version that is not the true one about the crime. For this, a timeline is drawn of what is said by Guilherme de Pádua, who changed his speech throughout the process, unlike Paula Thomaz, who always said he was not at the scene of the crime.
The actor began by saying that he was in love with his wife and that he never had any kind of relationship with Daniella. Afterwards, Guilherme even claimed that the actress was obsessed with him, which made Paula very jealous. One of the final versions stated that the soap opera colleagues had an extramarital relationship.
The documentary shows that no type of relationship – not even friendship – between the two has ever been proven.
One story that was fleshed out in the documentary was Gloria Perez’s long journey to find gas station attendants who could testify in the case. The playwright received an anonymous call saying that she needed to go to a gas station near the production company where the soap opera was being filmed to find out what had really happened to her daughter. However, no one wanted to talk to her.
It took months trying to find who the gas station attendants were who had witnessed the ambush that Guilherme had set up for Daniella. Finding them, the author faced another problem: convincing them to talk to the police. To get them to testify, Gloria Perez used several resources, involved politicians and religious people, worked in front of homes and even showed photos of her dead daughter in order to raise awareness.
See who are involved in the Daniella Perez case
Guilherme de Pádua met Daniella Perez during the recordings of “De Corpo e Alma”, a soap opera in which she played Yasmin and he played Bira. However, the character was initially written to be played by Alexandre Frota.
In “Pacto Brutal”, it is explained that the actor was acting in “Perigosas Peruas” and the author Carlos Lombardi did not release him. With the negative, Guilherme de Padua was selected.
The documentary details Guilherme de Padua’s past and shows that before appearing on TV, he starred in the play “Pasolini”, where he played the call boy responsible for the death of the famous Italian director.
He also participated in the striptease show of Eloína dos Leopardos, which took place at Galeria Alaska. Guilherme was one of the artist’s “leopards” and used to appear naked in presentations that took place for an audience composed of women and gays.
Still in prison, Paula Thomaz took the entrance exam for law and passed. After a short time, she applied for a transfer to another college. At this new educational institution, the woman convicted of murder had a class with judge José Muiños Piñeiro, who was a prosecutor and acted as a prosecutor in the case of Daniella Perez.
Piñeiro says he was shocked to recognize Paula’s name on his attendance list and, at the end of the course, he received a message from the student saying that she had loved the classes.
With great regret, Gloria Perez says that Daniella’s grave was vandalized months after the crime. “Every two weeks, we were called because someone had tried to open it,” she says.
In order not to have more attacks, the actress’s body was transferred to another place. Even with the move, new attempts to open the tomb took place. “They left a note giving the date, the time and saying they were going to get her out of there”, says the author.
Daniella Perez’s remains were kept in a safe at Santa Casa in Rio de Janeiro for a while, until they were transferred to where they are today, in a location not revealed by the series.