Jesse Garcia to Star in the Eva Longoria-Directed “Flamin’ Hot” Film

It’s a flamin’ hot time for Jesse Garcia.

The 38-year-old Mexican American actor and former Quinceañera star has landed the lead role in Eva Longoria’s feature directorial debut Flamin’ Hot from Searchlight Pictures and Franklin Entertainment.

Jesse Garcia

Garcia will play Richard Montanez, the architect of the Flamin’ Hot Cheeto, while Annie Gonzalez of Gentefied will portray his wife, Judy.

Flamin’ Hot tells the true life story of Richard Montanez, the Frito Lay janitor who took inspiration from his Mexican American heritage to create Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, the snack that disrupted the food industry and became a pop culture phenomenon.

Desperate Housewives actress and Telenovela, Grand Hoteland Devious Maids EP Longoria beat out several directors for the job after impressing Franklin and Searchlight with her authentic approach to the project.

“It has been my biggest priority to make sure we are telling Richard Montañez’s story authentically,” said Longoria in a statement. “I am so happy to have two extremely talented and fellow Mexican-Americans on board in these pivotal roles. Jesse and Annie have a deep understanding of our community and will be able to help tell this story of great importance for our culture.”

Also new to Flamin’ Hot is scribe Linda Yvette Chavez who has come aboard for revisions on the Lewis Colick-penned screenplay. Chavez is the creator of Netflix’s Gentefied and she’s also adapting I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter at the streamer for America Ferrera’s upcoming directorial debut.

Garcia appears in the Searchlight Pictures title Under the Same Moon, alongside Kate del Castillo and Ferrera. He has been widely recognized for his role in the highly acclaimed Quinceañera winner of the Audience Award and the Grand Jury Prize at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival. For his performance as Carlos, Garcia was nominated and won the prestigious ALMA Award (American Latino Media Arts) as Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture in 2007. Garcia can also be seen in The Avengers.

Gonzalez is a Chicana actress and East Los Angeles native. She grew up singing with the band Quetzal, (which has been a noted force in the Chicano movement), was one of the original dancers on Jamm X Kids for the WB and has been appearing on TV since the age of 10. She is most known for her roles in Gentefied, Vida, Shameless, and Legion. She was recently cast in the ABC pilot, Bucktown starring opposite Jane Lynch and Nicole Richie. Gonzalez also has a YouTube page with videos dedicated to her thoughts on spirituality, self-love, peace, positivity and living life as a Latina.

Roselyn Sanchez to Star in Fox’s “Fantasy Island” Reboot

Roselyn Sanchez is livin’ her fantasy…

The 48-year-old Puerto Rican actress/singer will star in Fantasy IslandFox’s contemporary reboot of the classic drama series.

Roselyn Sanchez

Sanchez will portay Elena Roarke, a descendant of the original series’ enigmatic Mr. Roarke, in the project, which received a straight-to-series order and will debut on August 10.

The project hails from writer-producers Liz Craft and Sarah Fain as well as Sony Pictures Television and its Gemstone Studios label, which co-produce with Fox Entertainment.

Fantasy Island is set at a luxury resort, where literally any fantasy requested by guests is fulfilled, although they rarely turn out as expected.

The resort is run by Elena Roarke (Sanchez) who set aside her own ambitions, and even the love of her life, to uphold her family’s legacy. Sophisticated, insightful and always charming, Elena’s calm exterior masks the challenges of the responsibilities she has assumed as steward of this mysterious island.

Sanchez joins previously cast series regular Kiara Barnes and heavily recurring John Gabriel Rodriquez. The reboot is keeping the semi-anthological format of the original Fantasy Island with three main characters played by Sanchez, Barnes and Rodriquez, who live/work on the island and new guests arriving in every episode.

The original 1977 series, created by Gene Levitt and executive produced by Aaron Spelling and Leonard Goldberg, starred Ricardo Montalbán as Mr. Roarke and Hervé Villechaize as his assistant Tattoo as they grant guests so-called “fantasies” on the island for a price.

The original Fantasy Island series and the 1998 reboot starring Malcolm McDowell as Mr. Roarke, will begin streaming on Fox Entertainment’s free-streaming platform, Tubi, on May 1.

On the new series, alongside Sanchez’s Elena Roarke, Barnes plays Ruby Okoro, a young woman with an old soul who arrives on Fantasy Island with a terminal illness, and is given a new lease on life there; Rodriquez plays pilot Javier, who also is the head of island transportation and a jack of all trades. There is no direct version of the Tattoo character in the reboot.

The Fantasy Island reimagining, written and executive produced by Craft and Fain, delves into the “what if” questions that keep us awake at night. Each episode will tell emotional, provocative stories about people who walk in with a desire but end up reborn to themselves through the magical realism of Fantasy Island.

Sanchez, whose major English-language television credits include lead roles in Without a Trace, Devious Maids and Grand Hotel, has been nominated for an ALMA Award six times, winning in 2008 for Without a Trace.

Jesse Garcia to Star in Michael Bay’s Action Feature “Ambulance”

Jesse Garcia is calling 9-1-1…

The 39-year-old Spanish and Mexican American actor has joined the cast of Michael Bay’s Endeavor ContentUniversal Pictures action feature Ambulance

Jesse Garcia

Garcia joins a growing cast that includes Jake Gyllenhaal, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Eiza Gonzalez, Garret DillahuntA Martinez, Keir O’DonnellMoses Ingram, rapper Wale FolarinCedric SandersJackson WhiteColin Woodell and Olivia Stambouliah.

Ambulance is based on the original Danish film Ambulancen and is in the spirit of such 1990s action films as Speed and Bad BoysChris Fedak wrote the original screenplay.

Garcia recently wrapped the new season of Narcos and was attached to the Marvel/Hulu series Ghost Rider before it was stalled. Garcia plays Ranger Freddie Gonzalez in the El Rey Network’s From Dusk Till DawnHe is also known for the award-winning film Quinceañera, written and directed by Wash Westmoreland and Richard Glatzer, executive produced by Todd Haynes. The film won both the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival in the Dramatic Independent Feature Competition. Garcia won Best Actor at the 2007 ALMA Awards for his role as Carlos, a troubled gay teenager.  In 2012, Garcia played a supporting role in The Avengers, in addition to roles in Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and Manifest Destiny. His TV work also includes Edward James Olmos’ movie Walkout for HBO, recurring roles on Sons of Anarchy, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles and The Shield

Gina Torres to Star on Season Two of Fox’s Drama Series “9-1-1: Lone Star”

Gina Torres is Texas bound…

The 51-year-old Cuban American actress has been cast as a series regular for the second season of Fox’s 9-11 spinoff series 9-1-1: Lone Star.

Gina Torres

Torres, best known for her role as Jessica Pearson on USA Network’s Suitsand Pearson, will star opposite Liv Tyler and Rob Lowe on the series.

9-1-1: Lone Star hails from 9-1-1 creators/executive producers Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and Tim Minear.

Set in Austin, it follows Owen (Lowe), a sophisticated New York firefighter who, along with his son, relocates to the Texas capital and must try to balance saving those who are at their most vulnerable with solving the problems in his own life.

Torres will play Paramedic Captain Tommy Vega, who was at the top of her game when she hung up her uniform to raise her twin daughters. For eight years life was great, until COVID-19 changed her life. With her husband’s restaurant going under, Tommy has no choice but to re-enter the workforce to support her family. Though it breaks her heart to be apart from her little girls, Tommy will show the world that no matter how much time has passed, when she puts on that uniform, she’s still a boss.

The role reunites Torres and Minear, who worked together on Fox’s sci-fi drama series Firefly.

“We are so excited to be expanding our 9-1-1-verse with the addition of Gina Torres,” said Minear. “I’ve been dying to write for her again ever since Firefly. Gina brings warmth, intelligence and command to everything she does. 2020 is finally looking up.”

9-1-1: Lone Star is produced by 20th Century Television in association with Ryan Murphy Television and Brad Falchuk Teley-Vision.

Season 2 is scheduled to begin production in Los Angeles later this fall for a premiere in early 2021 as part of the network’s midseason schedule.

Torres earned an ALMA Award, an Imagen Award and the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s Award for Outstanding Performance in a Television Series for her role as Jessica Pearson.

She most recently was cast as the lead of the Dracula reimagining drama pilot The Bridesat ABC. The Alias and Angel alumna also did an arc on HBO’s Westworld.

Gina Torres to Star in ABC’s Supernatural Drama Pilot “The Brides”

Gina Torres is vampin’ things up…

The 50-year-old Cuban American actress will lead the cast of The Brides, ABC’s supernatural drama pilot from Riverdale and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina developer/executive producer Roberto Aguirre-SacasaBerlanti Productions and Warner Bros. Television.

Gina Torres

Written by Aguirre-Sacasa and directed by Maggie KileyThe Brides, a sexy contemporary reimagining of Dracula, is a family drama with a trio of powerful female leads at its heart. With strong horror elements, The Brides is a vampire soap about empowered, immortal women and the things they do to maintain wealth, prestige, legacy — and their nontraditional family.

Torres plays Cleo Phillips. One of the three Brides of Draculaand the leader of this vampire trio, Cleo is an imperious woman with a queenly manner —understandably, as she was a queen in her former life who was turned by Dracula after the death of her husband. Now a maven of New York City real estate, Cleo is challenged professionally by a mysterious newcomer — even as her ties to her sisters are dangerously fraying.

While the focus will be on the women, the character of Dracula is featured in the show.

Torres recently played Jessica Pearson, first on USA Network’s popular original series Suits and then in the network’s Chicago-set spinoff series Pearson, which Torres headlined and executive produced. The role has earned Torres an ALMA Award, an Imagen Awardand the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s Award for Outstanding Performance in a Television Series.

At ABC, Torres co-starred on the Shondalanddrama series The Catch, recurred on Revenge and toplined the 2016 pilot The Death of Eva Sofia ValdezAngel and Firefly alumna Torres also did an arc on HBO’s Westwood.

Wilmer Valderrama to Host This Year’s ALMA Awards

Wilmer Valderrama is steppin’ up to the podium…

The 38-year-old Colombian and Venezuelan American actor will host next month’s ALMA Awards, which celebrate Latino achievements in American entertainment and media.

Wilmer Valderrama

In a statement, Valderrama said Latino achievements and contributions need to be spotlighted more than ever at what he called a “critical” time.

The ALMAs — American Latino Media Arts Awards— are back after a three-year hiatus in time for the 50th anniversary of UnidosUS, previously known as the National Council of La Raza.

UnidosUS is the nation’s largest Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization. In 1995 it created the ALMAsas a way to promote fair, accurate and balanced portrayals of Latinos in the entertainment industry.

Eva Longoriaand Gina Rodriguezwill be among the honorees at the awards show. Rodriguez, star of the CW’s Jane the Virgin, will share the awards spotlight with the show’s cast.

Activists Samantha Fuentesand Jamie Margolinwill also be honored. Fuentes survived the Parkland, Florida, school shooting, and Margolin founded the Zero Hourmovement to address climate change.

The November 4 ALMA ceremony is airing live at 8:00 pm ET on sibling TV channels Fuseand FM.

Former Fifth Harmonymember Ally Brooke Hernandezand singer Amara La Negrawill perform.

Fuse Mediamade a multi-year agreement to become the exclusive multiplatform media home of the ALMAs.

Norberto Barba to Direct Reshoot of FX’s “Sons of Anarchy” Spinoff Pilot “Mayans MC”

Norberto Barba is stepping into a world of Anarchy

The 53-year-old Latino television and film director, a three-time Alma Award-nominee, will direct and executive produce the redo of Kurt Sutter’s FX Sons of Anarchy spinoff pilot Mayans MC.

Norberto Barba

The pilot is undergoing a reshoot and a recasting of some key roles, according to Deadline.

Sutter, who initially was planning to direct the pilot, will focus on writing and hand reshoot duties to Barba.

Recasting is underway, with production expected to begin in late summer.

Set in the aftermath of Jax Teller’s death at the end of SOA’s seven-season run in 2014, Mayans MC will focus on the struggles of EZ Reyes, a prospect in the Mayan MC charter on the California/Mexico border.

Barba served as executive producer/director on all six seasons of Grimm and most recently directed episodes of Preacher and The Strain.

His other television directing credits include Designated Survivor, Chicago Justice, Pure Genius, Ice and The Bridge.

Ortiz to Star in ABC’s Comedy Pilot “Charlie Foxtrot”

Ana Ortiz is all about that base

The 46-year-old half-Puerto Rican actress has been cast as the female lead in ABC’s comedy pilot Charlie Foxtrot.

Ana Ortiz

Hailing from writer Sam Sklaver, Kapital Entertainment and ABC Studios, the project is set at Fort Bragg, an Army base in North Carolina.

It centers on Angelina Torres (Ortiz) and her two children, who live on the base. But, when Angelina loses her fiancé, Joe Taylor, killed in action in Iraq, it looks as though she’ll have to move. But Joe’s brother, Charlie Taylor (Jason Biggs), a dentist at the base, and usually a pushover, isn’t about to let that happen.

Torres’ Angelina is a well-meaning, fierce single mother-lion who believes in putting her kids first, even if that means crossing a few lines.

The casting of Ortiz, who starred in Devious Maids and Ugly Betty, stems from a talent deal ABC and ABC Studios signed with Ortiz immediately after Ortiz’s previous series, ABC Studios’ dramedy Devious Maids, ended its four-season run on Lifetime last summer. She decided on Charlie Foxtrot after being presented with several scripts.

This is Ortiz’s third consecutive pilot for ABC and ABC Studios, following the hourlong Ugly Betty and Devious Maids, both of which went to series, with the latter moving from ABC to Lifetime. Ortiz earned an ALMA Award and Imagen Award for her performance as Hilda on Ugly Betty.

Her television credits include appearances on How to Get Away with Murder, Revenge and Black-ish.

Saldaña to Star in the Action Thriller “Hummingbird”

Zoë Saldaña’s career is humming along…

The 38-year-old half-Dominican/half-Puerto Rican American actress will star in Hummingbird, the action thriller to be directed by Marcus Kryler and Fredrik Akerström from a Black List script by John McClain.

Zoë Saldaña

The story centers on a female black-ops assassin (Saldaña) whose latest mark forces her to confront her true identity.

Kryler and Akerström teamed to helm the cinematic content for Electronic ArtsBattlefield 1 video game, and their trailer has 58 million views on YouTube.

Fundamental Films picked up rights to Hummingbird in October. The company will finance and produce with Broken Road Productions.

Saldaña previously starred in the action thriller Colombiana, which earned her an Alma Award nomination. She most recently starred in Live By Night, and will next appear in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.

NBC Gives Pilot Order with Green Light to Horta’s “The Curse Of The Fuentes Women”

Silvio Horta is returning to the small screen with a new Latino-themed project…

NBC has given a pilot order with a green light to the 40-year-old Cuban American writer-producer and Ugly Betty creator’s drama The Curse Of The Fuentes Women.

Silvio Horta

Written/executive produced by Horta, The Curse Of The Fuentes Women comes from his Silent H Prods. and Warner Bros. Television.

When a magical and mysterious young man inexplicably emerges from the ocean, he breathes new passion into the lives of the Fuentes women – the beautiful but lonely Lola, her ailing mother Esperanza and her troubled daughter Soledad.

Horta received a Primetime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Comedy Series for Ugly Betty in 2007. He also won an ALMA Award for Outstanding Writing – Television Series, Mini-Series or Television Movie for the series, which was based on the hit Colombian telenovela Yo Soy Betty La Fea.