Lifetime Gives Green Light to “Torn From Her Arms” Movie Inspired by Jimena Madrid’s Separation from Mother at U.S. Border

Jimena Madrid’s heartbreaking immigration story is headed to the small screen…

Lifetime has given a green light to Torn From Her Arms, an original movie from Ozy Media, inspired by the separation of the six-year-old Salvadoran child from her mother at the U.S. border due to the Donald Trump administration’s zero-tolerance family separation policy.

Jimena Madrid

The made-for-television movie, which stems from Ozy Media’s development partnership with A+E Networks, is part of Lifetime’s Ripped from the Headlines franchise inspired by news and true events. Originally covered by Ozy’s reporting arm, Torn From Her Arms marks Ozy’s first foray into scripted programming and an expansion of its television catalog.

Per Lifetime, Torn from Her Arms is the timely story of Cindy and Jimena Madrid, a mother and daughter who fled violence in El Salvador, only to be separated at the U.S. border. Detained in different centers, Cindy and Jimena’s story gained national attention when the audiotape of Jimena crying for her mother was leaked, helping to alert the world to what was happening to undocumented immigrant families at the border. The movie shines a spotlight on the harsh child separation policies in place as part of the zero-tolerance policy and the struggle to reunite families.

Torn From Her Arms is written by Tawnya Bhattacharya and Ali Laventhol. Lifetime and Ozy Media are currently searching for a director and casting for the movie.

The 2020 Ripped from the Headlines winter slate was seen by over 25.1 million total viewers, according to Nielsen Live+7.

Mario Lopez to Star as a Sexy Colonel Sanders in Lifetime Mini-Movie “A Recipe for Seduction”

Mario Lopez is getting a little chicken fried

The 47-year-old Mexican American actor and television personality will star as Kentucky Fried Chicken’s Colonel Sanders on a special Lifetime mini-movie.

Mario Lopez, Colonel Sanders, KFC, Lifetime, Recipe for Seduction

The network has shared a poster on Twitter promoting Lopez’s new “original mini-movie,” A Recipe For Seduction, with the Saved by The Bell star appearing as a ripped version of the iconic fast food personality.

“Mark your calendars because Lifetime and @KFC have partnered for a Lifetime Original Mini-Movie you don’t want to miss,” the tweet read.

Set to premiere on Lifetime on Sunday at 12:00 pm ET, A Recipe For Seduction takes the television commercial to a new level. The Lifetime original mini-movie follows a young heiress as she struggles to pick between a rich suitor selected by her mother and the new house chef, Harland Sanders who brings more than his 11 herbs and spices secret recipe to the table. In Lifetime fashion, things take a turn for the dramatic, with the heiress’ mother and the disappointed suitor seeking to take out the KFC mascot himself.

To accompany the head-turning poster, Lifetime also shared a trailer for the mini-movie, presented by KFC.

Arlen Escarpeta to Star in the Second Season of OWN’s Drama Series “David Makes Man”

Arlen Escarpeta is the Manof the hour…

The 39-year-old Belizean actor has been cast as a series regular for the second season of OWN’s acclaimed Peabody-winning drama series David Makes Man.

Arlen Escarpeta

He’ll star alongside Kwame Patterson, who has been tapped to portray the title character, the adult version of David.

Escarpeta will play his brother JG, in the series which hails from Oscar winner Tarell Alvin McCraney and Warner Horizon Scripted Television

They join returning series regulars Akili McDowellAlana ArenasTravis Coles and Cayden K. Williams for season two.

Created by McCraney and executive produced by Oprah Winfrey, the first season ofDavid Makes Mancentered on David Young (McDowell), a 14-year-old prodigy learning to survive the streets that raised him and the higher education that could offer him a way out. Season two finds David in his early 30s, a rising business man facing an opportunity that will change him and his community forever; the mounting pressure forces David to choose between the instincts that helped him survive or finding a new way to finally, truly live.

Escarpeta’s television credits include series regular roles on Crackle’s The Oath and NBC’s American Dreams, and a recurring role in Syfy’s The Magicians,among others. He also starred as Bobby Brown in the Lifetime original film Whitney

His feature film credits include Into the StormFinal Destination 5, BrotherhoodFriday the 13th (2009), and We Are Marshall, among others.

Dania Ramirez to Star in Netflix’s DC Vertigo Comic-Based Series “Sweet Tooth”

Dania Ramirez has landed a Sweet role…

The 40-year-old Dominican actress and Devious Maids star will star in Sweet ToothNetflix’s new drama series based on the DC Vertigo comic.

Dania Ramirez

Ramirez will be part of the series’ core cast of series regulars, which includes Christian ConveryNonso Anozie and Adeel AkhtarWill Forte has a recurring role, while James Brolin serves as the series’ narrator.

The eight-episode Sweet Tooth follows the adventures of Gus (Convery) — part deer, part boy — who leaves his home in the forest to find the outside world ravaged by a cataclysmic event. He joins a ragtag family of humans and animal-children hybrids like himself in search of answers about this new world and the mystery behind his hybrid origins.

Ramirez will reportedly play Aimee, a pioneer in the middle of dystopic America, a lone scavenger in an abandoned city, rebuilding a sustainable habitat and giving orphaned hybrids a home.

The project hails from Robert Downey Jr. and Susan Downey’s Team DowneyJim MickleBeth Schwartz and Warner Bros. Television.

Along with fellow new Netflix series Cowboy Bebop, Sweet Tooth was among of a handful of Hollywood television series and movies to be granted border exemptions by the New Zealand government several weeks ago, a crucial step for any overseas production to be able to film in the country, which has largely eradicated COVID-19.

The tentative plan is for the cast to travel to New Zealand in August, where they’ll self-isolate for two weeks ahead of a potential September 7 start of production, according to Deadline.com. 

Ramirez can currently be seen as one of the leads in the first season of Kevin Williamson’s CBS All Access anthology drama series Tell Me a Story, airing on the CW

She previously starred on Marc Cherry’s Lifetime series Devious  Maids and had major roles on ABC’s Once Upon a Time and NBC’s Heroes

Monica Barbaro Signs with United Talent Agency (UTA)

Monica Barbaro has new representation…

The 29-year-old part-Mexican American actress has signed with United Talent Agency (UTA).

Monica Barbaro

Barbaro will appear as ‘Phoenix,’ the sole female fighter pilot, in the upcoming Paramount/SkydanceTom Cruisesequel Top Gun: Maverick set for release on June 26.

Barbaro recently appeared in ABC’s Stumptownand reprised her recurring role in Splitting Up Together for the same network.

Additionally, Barbaro starred in the Netflix series The Good Cop opposite Josh Groban and Tony Danza. She’s best known for her role as Yael on the second season of Lifetime’s critically acclaimed series UnREAL

She continues to be represented by Main Title Entertainmentand Meyer & Downs.

Jamie-Lynn Sigler to Star in the Lifetime Original Movie “The Neighbor in the Window”

Jamie-Lynn Sigleris feeling neighborly

The 38-year-old half-Cuban American actress will star in the Lifetime original movie, The Neighbor in the Window.

Jamie-Lynn Sigler

Part of the network’s true story-based Ripped from the Headlines slate for 2020, the movie centers on a suburban wife who finds herself and the security of her family threatened by another seemingly friendly neighborhood mom.

The Neighbor in the Window will premiere at 8:00 pm ET on February 8.

Here are the film’s details:

The Neighbor in the Window
(Premieres 8 p.m. February 8)

When upbeat, outgoing Karen (Sigler), her husband Scott and their young son relocate to Washington for Scott’s job, Karen looks forward to starting a new life.  She soon meets Lisa (Jenn Lyon), her beautiful charming neighbor and quickly bond.  But Lisa soon starts lying to Karen, and about Karen to others.  Lisa cleverly sets herself up as Karen’s victim, until every aspect of Karen’s new life starts to unravel.  Karen doesn’t realize how desperate and cunning Lisa is—until things come to a shocking head. The Neighbor in the Window is from writers Karen Stillmanand Margaux Froley, inspired by the book False Victim by Kathie TruittThe Neighbor in the Window is produced by A+E Studios and Front Street Productions. Nancy Bennett executive produces, while Menhaj Hudadirects.

Sigler, best known for her work on HBO’s The Sopranos, most recently appeared on Magnum P.I. Her other credits include Guys with Kids, Entourage, Ugly Betty and the TV movie Call Me: The Rise and Fall of Heidi Fleiss.

Netflix to Premiere Season 2 of Drama Series “You,” Featuring Jenna Ortega, Next Month

Jenna Ortegais making a You-turn this December…

Netflix will premiere the second season the Penn Badgley drama Youfeaturing the 17-year-old Puerto Rican and Mexican American actress in a key role, on December 26.

jJenna Ortega

Season 2 of the former Lifetime, which will appearexclusively on the streaming service, will once again follow bookstore manager Joe Goldberg (Badgley). 

In the freshman season, which was based on Caroline Kepnes’ bestselling novel and aired on Lifetime, Goldberg becomes obsessed with his customer Guinevere Beck (Elizabeth Lail), using social media and the Internet to stalk her.

The show’s sophomore run is based loosely on the author’s second book in the series, titled Hidden Bodies, and will stream under the Netflix Originalsbanner. It will follow Goldberg to Los Angeles, where he meets Love Quinn (Victoria Pedretti), an aspiring chef that isn’t into social media like his previous leading lady.

In addition to Ortega, who will portray Ellie Alves, James Scully will also appear in a key role inSeason 2, with Ambyr Childerspromoted to series regular and Carmela Zumbado joining as a regular. Chris D’EliaAdwin BrownRobin Lord TaylorMarielle ScottMelanie FieldMagda ApanowiczDanny Vasquezand Charlie Barnettare set to recur in Season 2.

The series is produced by Berlanti ProductionsMan Sewing Dinosaur andAlloy Entertainmentin association with Warner Horizon Scripted Television.

Ortega’s previous credits include Elena of AvalorStuck in the MiddleJane the Virginand Bizaardvark.

Dania Ramirez to Star in Sony’s “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” Sequel

Dania Ramirez is headed for the jungle…

The 39-year-old Dominican actress and former Devious Maidsstar has landed a role in Sony’s sequel to Jumanji: Welcome to the Junglewhich is being directed and co-written by Jake Kasdan.

Dania Ramirez

Ramirez joins a cast that includes members Dwayne JohnsonJack BlackKevin HartKaren Gillanand Nick Jonas, as well as new additions AwkwafinaDanny DeVitoand Danny Glover

Plot details are being kept under wraps. 

In addition to her lead role on Lifetime’sDevious Maids, Ramirez previously starred on television in ABC’s Once Upon a Timeand NBC’s Heroes.

Her film credits include X-Men: The Last Stand and Premium Rush.

Daphne Zuniga to Star in Lifetime’s Original Movie “Gates of Paradise”

Daphne Zuniga has found her Paradise

The 56-year-old half-Guatemalan American actress will star opposite Jason Priestley in Lifetime’s original movie Gates of Paradise, one of the several new projects based on V.C. Andrews’ Casteel Family book series.

Daphne Zuniga

Production is underway, with the TV movie set to premiere on the cable network this year.

The first, Heaven, was filmed last year. The remaining four are Dark AngelFallen Hearts, Gates of Paradise and Web of Dreams. The movie event series follows Heaven Casteel and her siblings after their father devises a scheme that threatens to destroy their dreams and separate the family forever.

Heaven introduces the infamous Casteel family, the least regarded of all the families living in the poverty-stricken foothills of the mountains of West Virginia. Yet the eldest daughter, Heaven Leigh Casteel, was still the smartest girl in the backwoods and determined to redeem her family name. However, her dreams become deferred the day her stepmother flees and her selfish father Luke sells her and her four siblings to different families. Heaven is sent to live in the home of Luke’s deranged ex-lover, Kitty, who torments Heaven as Kitty’s husband, Cal lures Heaven into a forbidden relationship while she fights to reunite her siblings.

Dark Angel picks up directly after Heaven finds a new life in her estranged grandmother and grandfather, Jillian and Tony Tatterton’s (Priestley) exquisite Boston mansion, Farthinggale Manor. But even in the world of the wealthy, there are strange forebodings, secrets best forgotten. As Heaven reaches out for love, she is slowly ensnared in a sinister web of cruel deceits.

Based on the third book, Fallen Hearts follows Heaven, now happily married and ready to settle back in her hometown. But after a trip to Farthinggale Manor, Heaven is persuaded to stay. Lured by her grandfather Tony Tatterton (Priestley) to live amidst the wealthy and privileged Heaven seems to have it all until the ghosts of her past rise up once more, threatening her precious new life.

Gates of Paradise quickly turns tragic when Heaven’s daughter Annie finds herself orphaned and crippled. Whisked off to Farthinggale Manor by Tony Tatterton (Priestley), Annie pines for her lost family, especially for her half-brother Luke. Without the warm glow of Luke’s love, she is lost in the shadows of despair and forced into submission by Nurse Broadfield (Zuniga). When Annie discovers a cottage hidden in Farthinggale’s woods, the mystery of her past deepens. Even as she yearns to see Luke again, her hopes and dreams are darkened by the sinister Casteel spell.

Based on the fifth and final novel of the Casteel series the prequel, Web of Dreams finally unlocks the mysteries of the family. Heaven’s mother Leigh (LaPorte) had to escape from Farthinggale Manor and the secrets she harbored. Falling into the arms of Luke Casteel Sr., his devotion promised her hope as only Luke knew her deepest of secrets. Bravely she bore the suspicions of the hill folk, as she tried to grasp the happiness that long eluded her. With a baby girl, Heaven, on the way, she hoped for a chance at happy ever after.

Gail Harveydirects Gates of Paradise from a screenplay by Gregory Smalland Richard Blaney