DC Universe’s Latina ‘Supergirl’ makes history
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Sasha Calle attends the Television Academy Daytime Programming Cocktail Reception at Television Academy's Wolf Theatre at the Saban Media Center on August 28, 2019 in North Hollywood, California

By Sonia Ramirez

Sasha Calle was in tears when she got the news from director Andy Muschietti that she had landed the coveted role of Supergirl for the upcoming DC movie “The Flash.”

The 25-year-old Colombian actress was visibly emotional as Muschietti shared the news through Instagram, asking the actress, “Can you fly?”

(Photo by Rachel Luna/Getty Images)

Through a video conference, Muschietti brought out the Supergirl cape and told Calle, “You’re Supergirl,” to which Calle asked, “Can I freak out for a second?”

Calle, who is known for her role as Lola Rosales on “The Young and the Restless,” shared the news on her Instagram and wrote, “Una latina súper héroe?! En que planeta?! Pues en este planeta!! (“A Latina superhero?! On what planet?! Well, on this planet!).

Calle was chosen from more than 425 auditioners, according to D’Alessandro.

Read full article at Chron.

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Romina Puga sitting with her two co host puppets on a stool

, What to Watch

Standing outside a home, Romina Puga paints endangered animals, plants a garden, hosts guest experts and talks about the news. She is joined by two friends: Coco, a puppet shaped like a coconut, and Maya, a plush pink puppet.

Maybe most important, Ms. Puga is as likely to speak in Spanish as in English.

Those are scenes from “Club Mundo Kids,” a TV news show debuting April 10 on Televisa and April 11 on Telemundo, aimed at young, first- and second-generation Hispanic children in the United States, where the large Hispanic population is growing, diverse and often underrepresented in television and in movies.

“There is very little content being created that is speaking to U.S. Hispanic, Latinx children and telling their stories,” said Ms. Puga, the show’s 31-year-old host. “The younger generation doesn’t really have anyone breaking things down and talking directly to them in a way that is digestible.”

Latinos make up the largest minority group in the United States, accounting for 18.5 percent of the population, and more than one in four newborns are Latino, according to the Pew Research Center.

But only 4.5 percent of all speaking characters across 1,200 top-grossing films from 2007 to 2018 were Latino, according to a 2019 study by the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

Broadcasters have occasionally tried to reach young Hispanic audiences, often with cartoon programming like Nickelodeon’s “Dora the Explorer,” about the adventures of a young animated Latina and her friends. In 2016, the Disney Channel introduced “Elena of Avalor,” an animated series praised for featuring Disney’s first Latina princess. Univision has “Planeta U” a Saturday programming block of animated and educational programs aimed at children ages 2 to 8.

And for decades, “Sesame Street” has featured Rosita, a blue bilingual puppet from Mexico.

“Club Mundo Kids,” in contrast, puts real people in front of the camera, including a host, children and guest experts, and makes a point of talking to children ages 6 and up about Latino life in a real-world context.

“It’s a real opportunity to meet Spanish-speaking kids where they are and to help them build language and reading skills, like ‘Sesame Street’ and ‘Reading Rainbow’ has been doing for decades in English,’’ said Jason Ruiz, an associate professor of American studies at the University of Notre Dame.

He added that the show, possibly alone among programs for children, “will be symbolically important for giving Spanish-dominant kids a sense of belonging by having a show aimed directly at them.”

Hosted by Ms. Puga, a former ABC News correspondent, the series features a mix of live-action and animated segments that explain topics like where food comes from and why there are so many Spanish dialects.

Ms. Puga said the show combines elements of the 1990s children’s programs that she watched growing up Chilean-Argentine in Miami, but with current trends, themes and explanatory segments. In an episode about agriculture, for instance, an animated cornstalk named Miguel Maíz explains how some foods act as fuel for our bodies, and Ms. Puga says the different Spanish words for corn (one being “maíz”).

Click here to read the full article on What to Watch.

The Walking Dead star’s Selena series confirms Part 2 premiere date on Netflix
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Christian Serratos performing as Selena in the netflix series wearing a white bralette top, gold dangly earrings and red lipstick.

BY , Digital Spy

Netflix has confirmed the premiere date of Selena: The Series (Part 2) starring The Walking Dead’s Christian Serratos as the titular singer.

Following the announcement earlier this year that the second installment of Selena: The Series would be available from May, the streaming service has now confirmed that new episodes will arrive on Tuesday, May 4.

In a preview for the upcoming episodes, we see Christian perform as Selena Quintanilla-Pérez in her iconic glittering jumpsuit.

Revealing the premise for Part 2, Netflix’s VP of Latin American Originals, Francisco Ramos, promised viewers recently that Selena: The Series would conclude with an unmissable “encore”.

“Fans will get to see how [she] balances family, love, and a burgeoning career. Part 2 of Selena: The Series chronicles the years of hard work and sacrifice the Quintanilla family navigate together as she becomes the most successful female Latin artist of all time.”

Christian Serratos has also opened up about her experience of portraying the singer in the series, which charts the star’s rise to fame before her tragic death aged just 23.

“The series is going to be very eye-opening for people because we’re showing so much more of Selena’s life that we learned because of them,” Serratos explained.

Click here to read the full article on Digital Spy.

Eva Longoria to Direct & Executive Produce ‘The Gordita Chronicles’ Comedy Pilot for HBO Max
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Eva Longoria speaking in front of a zoom camera giving her speech for the Critics Choice Awards

Eva Longoria is set to direct and be an executive producer of new Latino comedy pilot The Gordita Chronicles for HBO Max. The Gordita Chronicles follows the life of a preteen Dominican girl who is having trouble fitting into a very opulent and extravagant Miami, in the 1980s no less.

Zoe Saldana along with her sisters will serve as producers on the show.

The family comedy is based on the childhood of Latina journalist Claudia Forestier (who will also serve as a producer and writer for the show). Forestier also is an executive story writer for Selena: The Series.

As for the cast, Juan Javier Cardenas and Diana Maria Riva will star in the pilot. Cardenas is mostly known as Dante in The Walking Dead. And Riva is most known for her role as Detective Perez in Dead to Me.

Longoria isn’t a stranger to television directing. She has more than a dozen credits ranging from Grand Hotel, Black-ish, and The Mick. Eva, however, is making her film directing debut with Flamin’ Hot. The biopic is about the Mexican janitor who invented the Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. Longoria made the announcement on instagram earlier this month.

“I’m BEYOND excited & honored to announce my part within this brilliant team of women coming together to create ‘The Gordita Chronicles’ 🎬💪🏽.” She went on to say, “The lack of representation and diversity in Hollywood continues to be a major focus, rightfully so, and I’m so honored to be a part of the change!”

Click here to read the full article on Remezcla.

Cardi B says she will launch haircare line to teach people about ‘Afro-Latina’ hair
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Cardi B performing onstage during the Grammy Awards ceremony at the Los Angeles Convention Center

Cardi B has said she will launch her own range of haircare products, in an attempt to teach people about “Afro-Latina” hair.

The rapper said she was inspired to work on the products after receiving offensive comments about a video she posted about her natural hair.

“This year I will be coming out with a haircare line,” Cardi B wrote on Instagram. “I think [it is] time for people to educate themselves on nationality, race and ethnicity.”

She added: “People [are] thinking every Hispanic is Mexican or something and must have the same hair texture, colour and features.

“Being Hispanic/Latina don’t make your hair long, don’t make your skin light [and] don’t make your face features slim especially [if you come from] Latin countries from the Caribbean islands … DNA has something to do with your hair not your nationality.”

In another tweet, Cardi B wrote: “Hair texture [doesn’t] make you a race, however I am Afro-Latina.”

Cardi B said the haircare line was something she had been working on for herself and for her daughter’s hair. It is not known if the line will contain a hair mask product, a recipe for which she shared online last year. The mask included avocado, argan oil, mayonnaise, black castor oil, olive oil, two eggs, honey and banana.

In 2020, Latino consumers under 35 spent $663m on beauty products, with hair care, hair colour and nails dominating, according to Nielsen.

Juvan José Amaya, a partner at Juve consulting, said the Latin beauty market was in transition.

“We are slowly shifting the idea that Latinas have nice hazel or green eyes, or look ‘exotic’,” he told WWD. “As a generation we hate the word exotic, that’s a big ‘no’… [beauty is] starting to become a little more … inclusive and accepting of natural features, such as curly hair.”

Click here to read the full article on the Guardian.

Latina entrepreneurs find a space online to thrive in pandemic
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Amaury Vidales holds a shirt with a number so viewers of her "Amaury's Accessories" livestream can comment and purchase the shirt through a Facebook Live event inside of her Eden Prairie, Minn., home on March 10.

By  Kathryn Styer Martinez

Amaury Vidales goes live weekly on her Facebook page, Amaury Accesorios, to show prospective shoppers what new things she has to sell — but it’s not just another virtual boutique.

Between the spontaneous bidding wars, music and banter with customers, Vidales creates a shopping experience that is a mix of buzzing zocalos found in the centers of Mexican cities, bustling open-air tianguis where shoppers can find all manner of items and an artisan handmade crafts fair.

Photo: Evan Frost | MPR News

She tries to include a new surprise item each week. Recently, it was a mini lavadero for makeup brushes. “Everybody in Mexico has [a lavadero] in [their] house,” said Vidales. The small handmade replica comes complete with a mini soap and it’s own carrying case.

Vidales, 47, represents a new kind of entrepreneur, someone who’s built a following online for experiences that have become scarce during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the process, she’s created an online space for community members to come together in an isolated world.

“It’s kind of like an escape from home and escape from your job. It’s like a fun place to hang out,” said her daughter, Regina Olono Vidales. “Most people just show up and they stay the full four hours.”

Her mother is also part of a growing wave of Latino small business owners in Minnesota and across the country. Latino-owned businesses grew by 34 percent compared to non-Latinos at just 1 percent over the past decade, according to a recent study by the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative.

That report also found Latina business owners had been especially hurt by the pandemic, making Vidales’ success that much more intriguing.

Frida Kahlo an inspiration

Vidales reaches clients through her Facebook page, negotiates sales and follow-up calls through messaging applications and even sources her suppliers through Instagram accounts. All payments are made virtually.

She launched in 2019, before the pandemic, as a way to help pay her daughter’s college tuition and other family expenses. She said when she started, there were only a few other women like her selling goods through their social media accounts. The market exploded last year as COVID-19 kept people away from public gathering spaces.

Olono Vidales helps her mother with the weekly live events, along with her 12-year-old brother and Vidales’ husband, both named Javier.

On a recent broadcast, Vidales dressed in a shirt reminiscent of one worn by Salma Hayek in the movie “Frida.” She freshened her lipstick and turned on her ring light and smartphone as Latino pop music set the mood in the background.

As the four-hour event rolled on, the energy turned up. Vidales greeted people coming into the live chat by name while showing items for sale accompanied by their item number. Sometimes, bidding wars ensue, Olono Vidales said.

Vidales, who grew up in Sonora, Mexico, had long wanted to become a business owner. The virtual boutique has helped make her less shy and a polished public speaker, her daughter said.

Frida Kahlo’s importance to the boutique transcends fashion. The painter is prominent in many of the images. Women, especially Mexican women, look up to Kahlo as someone who achieved so much and never gave up despite her suffering.

Read the full article at mprnews.

Eva Longoria Named to Television Academy Foundation Board of Directors
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Eva Longoria at a red carpet event, posing for the camera

Cris Abrego, chair of the Television Academy Foundation, TODAY announced two new chair appointees to the Foundation’s board of directors: Eva Longoria, actress, director and CEO, UnbeliEVAble Entertainment, and Ivana Kirkbride, Global Director of Content Strategy and Programming, Facebook Inc.

Longoria and Kirkbride will work alongside Abrego and Foundation board members to help further the nonprofit’s work promoting inclusion within the television industry and providing educational and professional development programs for students with diverse backgrounds. The Television Academy Foundation’s signature programs include a renowned annual internship program, media faculty conference and the College Television Awards, in addition to an extensive archive of oral histories of television legends, The Interviews.

“We are thrilled to welcome two exceedingly accomplished, inspiring and engaged trailblazers to the Foundation’s board,” said Abrego. “As leaders in their respective fields, their expertise and thought leadership will help drive the Foundation’s initiatives and champion the advancement of aspiring professionals from underrepresented communities to ensure a more inclusive, next-generation television talent pool.”

Having worked consistently in Hollywood for over 20 years, Eva Longoria has cemented herself as an industry staple known for her work both in front of and behind the camera. An award-winning actress, director, producer, entrepreneur, philanthropist and activist, Longoria has been leading the charge of diverse and female representation since her starring role in the hit ABC series Desperate Housewives. Through her production company UnbeliEVAble Entertainment, Longoria has become one the most significant trailblazers and recently renewed her overall deal with Twentieth Television. Founded in 2005, the company actively chooses purposeful projects that accurately represent the stories of the Latinx and other underrepresented communities. It was also recently announced that the company will partner with ViacomCBS’ Entertainment & Youth Group for their First Time Directors program highlighting BIPOC and women filmmakers to produce 50 films across the group’s portfolio of networks and streaming services.

Longoria has directed countless hours of television and is currently preparing to direct three feature films-the biopic Flamin’ Hot for Searchlight, workplace comedy 24/7 for Universal Pictures in which she will executive produce and star opposite Kerry Washington, and female action comedy Spa Day for Sony Pictures. Recently named by People magazine as one of the Women Changing the World, Longoria is a dedicated philanthropist and activist who has consistently lent her voice to the issues she is passionate about, ranging from immigration to STEM education. Committed to empowering Latinas everywhere, Longoria established the Eva Longoria Foundation (ELF) in 2012 to help Latinas build better futures for themselves and their families through educational programs, scholarships, mentorship and entrepreneurship. She is a founding member of TIME’S UP and co-founder of Latino Victory Fund and Momento Latino. Longoria has also been the face of L’Oreal Paris for over 15 years.

Continue to Broadway World to read the full article 

Photo Credit: Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Acura

Selena Gomez ‘Thrilled’ to Land First No. 1 on Top Latin Albums Chart With ‘Revelación’
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Selena Gomez pictured in an all blue dress against a blue background with a dining table in front of her filled with food and art pieces

By , Billboard

It’s the biggest week for a Latin album by a woman since 2017. Plus: Gomez is the first woman to concurrently lead Top Latin Albums & Latin Airplay in over a decade.

Selena Gomez makes a splashy entrance on Billboard’s Top Latin Albums chart as her Revelación EP debuts at No. 1 on the March 27-dated survey. Her first-ever Spanish-language effort arrives with 23,000 equivalent album units earned in the U.S. in the week ending March 18, according to MRC Data — marking the biggest week for a Latin album by a woman since 2017.

“I never go into anything expecting a No. 1 so I do not take it for granted,” Gomez tells Billboard. “It’s always a bit nerve racking before releasing any music because as artists we put so much of ourselves out there. For this EP specifically, I was the most nervous I have been in a long time because my heritage means so much to me and I have been talking about doing this for over 10 years. I wanted it to be perfect. I am thrilled to see the response from my fans and also from people who might not have listened to my other music.”

The Top Latin Albums chart ranks the most popular Latin albums of the week in the U.S. based on multimetric consumption as measured in equivalent album units. Units comprise album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). Each unit equals one album sale, or 10 individual tracks sold from an album, or 3,750 ad-supported or 1,250 paid/subscription on-demand official audio and video streams generated by songs from an album.

Biggest Week for a Latin Album by a Woman Since 2017: The seven-track Revelación was released March 12 via Interscope/IGA. Of its starting sum of 23,000 equivalent album units, album sales comprise 14,000 and the bulk of the remainder are SEA units (equaling 12.21 million on-demand streams of the set’s songs). Selena’s debut Latin project boasts the biggest week for a Latin album by a woman in nearly four years, since Shakira’s El Dorado started with 29,000 units in its first week (chart dated June 17, 2017).

“Without a doubt the most challenging aspect was having to do all of the sessions over Zoom,” Gomez adds. “We started recording the EP right before Covid shut everything down. In the beginning there were times I ended up canceling sessions because I found it so uninspiring not to be in the same room with everyone. I eventually was able to get past it and am extremely happy with how the music came together. [Producer] Tainy was very patient with me while I worked through my frustrations.”

First Album by a Woman at No. 1 on Top Latin Albums Since 2017: Revelación is the first album by a female act at No. 1 on Top Latin Albums since Shakira’s El Dorado spent its fifth and final nonconsecutive week atop the list dated Aug. 5, 2017.

Highest Debut by a Female Solo Act Since 2016: Gomez also notches the highest debut by a female solo act since Jenni Rivera’s Paloma Negra Desde Monterrey likewise debuted atop the list in November 2016. In between Rivera and Gomez, a collaborative set by two women launched at No. 1: Gloria Trevi and Alejandra Guzman’s Versus in July 2017.

Click here to read the full article on billboard.

She was American’s first Latina to captain a flight. Now, she’s a pioneer poet, too
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Linda Pauwels sitting in the pilots quarters of a plane

BY WALTER VILLA, MIAMI HERALD

In 2000, Linda Pauwels became a pioneer pilot, the first Latin woman ever to captain an American Airlines flight.

Now she’s a pioneer poet, too.

Last year, she authored “Beyond Haiku: Pilots Write Poetry.” In the 50-page book, she incorporated the contributions of 40 pilots, including her own prose. She also asked the children of pilots — ages 6 to 17 — to contribute illustrations to accompany the poems. She used the work of 18 artists.

Weston’s Liz Booker, the founder of the Aviatrix Book Review website — which details more than 500 books of all genres that feature women in aviation — was impressed with “Beyond Haiku.”

“The book is the first of its kind that I’m aware of,” said Booker, a retired Coast Guard helicopter pilot. “I’ve seen poetry books by a pilot. But I’ve never seen a collection of poems from different pilots, especially with children doing the artwork.”

Pauwels got the idea for the book last year, when the COVID-19 pandemic crippled the airline industry, leaving many families hurting. To help, Pauwels is donating all proceeds from the book to the Allied Pilots Association’s Emergency Relief and Scholarship Fund, which works in support of furloughed pilots and their families.

In the first three months since publication, Pauwels has been able to raise $2,200.

But Pauwels, a 57-year-old part-time Miami resident, has only just begun. She has written a second book, “Beyond Haiku: Women Pilots Write Poetry,” which is set to be released this summer.

She is also still an active pilot for American Airlines. In fact, on March 8, to promote International Women’s Day as well as her second poetry book, the plan is that she will captain a flight from Miami to Dallas. The entire crew will be female, including Pauwels’ first officer as well as eight flight attendants.

“The March 8 flight will bring back memories,” Pauwels said. “I was part of American’s second all-female crew in 1989. The first one was in 1987.”

COMING TO MIAMI
Born in Argentina, Pauwels lost her father when she was 6 years old. Within four months, Pauwels’ mother, Mabel, moved the family to Miami, where Linda dreamed of becoming a doctor.

But after Mabel started working at Miami International Airport as a traffic and operations agent for TACA Airlines, Pauwels’ interest in flight grew.

Pauwels, while working a night shift at the front desk of a Miami Beach hotel, was also a full-time, straight-A student at Miami Dade College’s Career Pilot/Flight Engineer program. She graduated from MDC in 1985, and American Airlines hired her in 1988 as a flight engineer on a Boeing 727.

Her interest in writing goes back a long way. In fact, she was the Orange County Register’s first aviation columnist in the mid-2000s.

Pauwels, who speaks Spanish, English and French, has a graduate degree in education. She will soon dive into Mandarin so she can be ready to resume piloting American’s post-COVID-19 flights to China.

Pauwels’ main residence is in the Dallas area, where American is headquartered. She recently got caught up in mid-February’s Texas snowstorm.

A married mother of two adult children, Pauwels and her husband were without power for four days during the storm. Outside their doors were 8 inches of snow. Inside, with the thermometer reading 37 degrees, Pauwels wrote two haikus, including:

Three mourning doves

Sit, puffy chested

Snowy bamboo fence

SOFTER SIDE OF PILOTS
Pauwels admits poetry is not known to be popular among mostly male aviators.

But she also thought writing haikus could help pilots deal with the stress of the job.

“Pilots live in a world of structure — we fly by the rules,” Pauwels said. “This book deconstructs some of that rigidity and allows the people on the other side of the cockpit doors to see that there is a softer side to the men and women who fly.”

As for her book’s artwork, Pauwels said she knew “poems alone wouldn’t cut it, and I wanted to give children an opportunity to create in their own style.”

Callista Chabot, a 17-year-old from New Hampshire, is drawing the cover illustration for Pauwels’ second book. The illustration depicts a butterfly riding on the nose of an airplane.

“I like the contrast between masculinity and femininity,” said Chabot, whose father, Jason, is a captain.

Chabot, who dreams of writing and illustrating her own children’s books one day, said she was thrilled to be selected for a book by women poets.

“I’m a strong feminist,” she said. “To get to work on a project written by women who work in a male-dominated industry is cool.”

Click here to read the full article on the Miami Herald.

New ‘In The Heights’ movie trailer teases prideful moment of Latino visibility, cast says
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In the Heights film poster

By Nicole Acevedo of NBC News

Lin-Manuel Miranda, creator of the hit Broadway musical “Hamilton,” and film director Jon M. Chu are ready to bring Latinos the “Crazy Rich Asians” moment many have been craving.

Chu, who directed “Crazy Rich Asians,” one of 2018’s biggest blockbusters, partnered with Miranda and screenwriter Quiara Alegría Hudes to adapt Miranda’s Tony-winning musical “In The Heights” into a film set to premiere June 18 in theaters and on HBO Max.

“This is a big movie musical,” Miranda said during a virtual event Saturday ahead of the premiere of the film’s newest trailers during the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards Sunday night.

“We’re so used to asking for less, just to ask to occupy space. As Latinos, we’re like, ‘Please just let us make our little movie.’ And Jon, on every step of the way, he was like, ‘Nope, this is a big movie.’ These guys have big dreams, we’re allowed to go that big,” Miranda said.

“In The Heights” tells the story of a block that’s disappearing as gentrification begins to take hold of the predominantly Latino neighborhood of New York City’s Washington Heights, where the film was shot over two years ago and where Miranda grew up. The film centers on several characters dealing with issues of family, love and community — an ode to the original musical which was highly praised for countering Latino stereotypes.

One of the film’s main characters, Nina, is a studious and ambitious young Latina who goes to Stanford University as the first person in her family to attend college, and everyone in the neighborhood admires her as the “one who made it out.”

“The struggle of the first-generation American in the Latino community is not talked about a lot because it’s almost like a privilege, but there’s a lot of identity crisis that comes with it,” said Leslie Grace, the Bronx-born Dominican singer and actress who plays Nina. “I’m so blessed to have explored that with Jon, with Lin, with Quiara and all of the cast.”

Anthony Ramos stars as Usnavi, a bodega owner, after recently appearing in the Oscar-winning film “A Star Is Born” and originating the roles of John Laurens and Philip Hamilton in “Hamilton.”

“I’ve never seen anything where there’s 75 Latinos in the middle of the street dancing and singing about pride and where they come from,” Ramos said during the virtual event. “I get emotional when I’m thinking about this movie and what it means to me and the culture,” especially one that continues to be significantly underrepresented in Hollywood films.

Click here to continue reading this article at NBC News 

Photo Credit: Warner Bros. 

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