Peña Attached to Star in Film Adaptation of NBC’s Cult Classic “CHiPS”

Michael Peña is letting the chips fall where they may…

Warner Bros. has set actor/comedian Dax Shepard to write, direct and star in the film adaptation of the long-running television series CHiPS, with the 38-year-old Mexican American actor attached to play Frank “Ponch” Poncherello.

Michael Peña

CHiPS, whichran from 1977-83, centered on two officers who patrolled the highways of California on motorcycles in some scandalously tight khaki uniforms. Shepard will play Officer Jon Baker (played in the original by Larry Wilcox), with Peña starring in therole Erik Estrada originated. Rick Rosner created the NBC series.

This is the most serious Warner Bros. has been in turning CHiPS into a film. The studio attempted it years ago, after That ’70s Show star Wilmer Valderrama showed up in the office of executive Greg Silverman. Dressed in the signature tight-fitting uniform, Valderrama merely said, “Funny, right?” — and he walked out with a deal and an intention to play Ponch. But while television shows from that era like Starsky & Hutch and The Dukes Of Hazzard got movie transfers, CHiPS stalled out.

The new take is envisioned as much in the tone of Bad Boys and Lethal Weapon than a comedy. Shepard is known mostly in humorous roles and the series Parenthood. He’s actually a professional driver of racecars and motorcycles, and he expects to be performing his own riding and stunts.

del Castillo Lending Voice to Animated Film “El Americano 3D”

Kate del Castillo is about to get animated…

The 41-year-old Mexican actress and former telenovela star has joined the voice cast of El Americano 3D, which is being billed as the first major U.S.-Mexican animated co-production.

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The film will be released in the first quarter of 2015, according to Variety.

Former Friends star Lisa Kudrow heads the ensemble voice cast that also includes Modern Family star Rico Rodriguez, Cheech Marin, Erik Estrada and Mexican-American actor and director Edward James Olmos, who also serves as a co-producer.

El Americano is the fourth film – and first CGI movie – made at the Animex Producciones animated studio in Puebla, Mexico. Burbank, California-based Olmos Productions also has co-production credits.

The film will premiere in both Mexico and the United States in the first three months of 2015, including an initial 1,200-screen U.S. theatrical release.

Deals also have been reached at the ongoing Cannes Film Festival to distribute the film in Russia and in Asian countries.

Variety describes the movie as a “revisionist take on the U.S. as a country of role models for young Mexicans.”

The film “makes us realize that the answers to our struggles are right there in our own hearts,” Olmos was quoted as saying.

It tells the story of Cuco, a young Mexican parrot who embarks on an epic quest to persuade an American crime-fighting TV celebrity to help defend his family from bullies, the magazine said.

Cuco learns, however, that he can become a hero without anyone else’s help.

Trailer Released for Disney’s “Planes: Fire & Rescue,” Featuring Erik Estrada

The sky’s the limit for Erik Estrada

Disney has released the trailer for Planes: Fire & Rescue, which finds the 65-year-old Puerto Rican actor lending his voice to one of the animated film’s characters.

Planes: Fires & Rescue

Estrada, best known for starring in the television series CHiPs, voices the character of as Nick “Loop’n” Lopez, a helicopter police officer.

The sequel to last year’s Planes, which made nearly $220 million worldwide, sees the return of world famous air racer Dusty Crophopper (voiced by Dane Cook). After learning that his engine is damaged and he may never be able to race again, Dusty must shift gears and is launched into the world of wildfire air attack.

Dusty joins forces with veteran fire and rescue helicopter Blade Ranger (voice of Ed Harris) and his courageous air attack team, including spirited super scooper Lil’ Dipper (voice of Julie Bowen), heavy-lift helicopter Windlifter (voice of Wes Studi), ex-military transport Cabbie (voice of Dale Dye) and a lively bunch of brave all-terrain vehicles known as The Smokejumpers. Together, the fearless team battles a massive wildfire, and Dusty learns what it takes to become a true hero.

In addition to Estrada, the film also features the voice of Danny Pardo.The Argentine actor voices the character of Blackout.

Planes: Fire & Rescue will hit theatres in the U.S. on  July 18.

Estrada to Host Hallmark Channel’s “Hollywood Christmas Parade”

Erik Estrada is ready to get you into the holiday spirit…

The 63-year-old Puerto Rican actor and Spanish telenovela star will host this year’s Hollywood Christmas Parade on the Hallmark Channel.

Erik Estrada

Estrada, who rose to acclaim on the police drama CHiPs, will co-host the show with his fellow World’s Funniest Moments host Laura McKenzie. Along with his work on the weekly series, Estrada competed on Univision’s Mira Quien Baila last season.

This year’s Grand Marshal is actor Joe Mantegna, who has starred on Criminal Minds. He’ll be joined by Lou Ferrigno, Louis Gossett Jr., as well as cast members from Glee, Criminal Minds and Days Of Our Lives, among others.

The 2012 Hollywood Christmas Parade will air on December 10 at 6:00 pm ET on the Hallmark Channel.

López Sashays Her Way to the Mira Quién Baila Crown…

Should telenovela superstar Adamari López quit acting one day, she could easily take up ballroom dancing.

During last night’s grand finale of Mira Quién Baila, the 40-year-old Puerto Rican actress took home the crown on Univision’s celebrity dancing competition.


“I think I danced with my heart,” López said.

After coming in ahead of the competition, López’s face was all-aglow during a post-victory interview AOL Latino.

“I would scream again but I screamed earlier and I think there are others doing interviews right now so I can’t scream, but I am so happy and very excited,” the Amigas y Rivales actress. “I am very appreciative of the public of their votes.”

López reportedly received two million votes to clinch the title.

During her interview with AOL Latino, the breast cancer survivor talked about her selected charity, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a foundation that fights against breast cancer. The organization will receive López’ grand prize earnings.

López danced her way past singer Priscila Angel and Puerto Rican actor Erik Estrada, who placed third place.

Bailon’s High-Octane Dance on “Mira quién baila”

There’s no denying Adrienne Bailon knows how to shake her groove thing…or that she could easily be a contestant on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars.

The former Cheetah Girl strutted her stuff during a high-energy performance on Univision’s Mira quién baila—a dance competition similar to Dancing with the Stars.

Adrienne Baillon

The 28-year-old half Puerto Rican/half Ecuadorian singer/actress/dancer may not have belted out a song, but she definitely shook her bon bon during her appearance. Backed by a crew of male dancers, the former star of Disney’s The Cheetah Girls movies—dressed in a black leather jumpsuit and rhinestone-covered harness—descended from a swing before bustin’ a move on the dance floor.

After her performance, the former member of the girl group 3LW talked about her  career with the show’s hosts, including being discovered by Ricky Martin.

Bailon, who appears in Pitbull’s “Give Me Everything” video, says she’s a huge fan of the show. But she remain tight-lipped about who she’s hoping wins the title.

Contestants still in the hunt are Puerto Rican telenovela star Adamari Lopez, Puerto Rican American actor Erik Estrada and Mexican-American actress/model Elizabeth Gutiérrez.