Jorge Masvidal to Fight Colby Covington in Headlining Welterweight Bout in March

Jorge Masvidal is returning to the Octagon in March…

The 37-year-old Cuban and Peruvian American professional mixed martial artist will headline UFC 272, in a welterweight grudge match against Colby Covington, on March 5, UFC Chief Business Officer Hunter Campbell has announced.

Jorge MasvidalWhile contracts haven’t been signed yet for the 170-pound scrap, the bout is nearly finalized, per Campbell.

The UFC 272 pay-per-view will take place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The match will be a five-round, nontitle bout.

“He better f—ing show up,” Covington said in a text message to ESPN Tuesday.

The UFC originally targeted featherweight and bantamweight title fights for the event, however those bouts are no longer on the March 5 date. Part of that was due to an injury to featherweight challenger Max Holloway.

Masvidal (35-15) is one of the UFC’s most popular figures. He hasn’t fought since he suffered a knockout loss to Kamaru Usman in a welterweight championship fight at UFC 261 last April.

Masvidal’s past two fights have been against Usman. He also lost to the champ via unanimous decision in July 2020.

Covington (16-3) is also coming off a failed title bid against Usman in his last fight. The 33-year-old also has lost twice to Usman, both via decision. His most recent win came against Tyron Woodley in September.

Masvidal and Covington trained together at American Top Team in South Florida, and even lived together for a period of time. The two had a falling out in 2018, and Covington left ATT in 2020.

Both welterweights still fight out of the Miami area.

OWN Closes Deal for Third Season of Jessica Camacho’s Legal Drama “All Rise” Nearly Five Months After Its CBS Cancellation

Jessica Camacho will Rise again…

OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network has closed a deal for a 20-episode third season of the Warner Bros Television-produced legal drama All Rise, starring the 38-year-old actress.

Jessica Camacho

The series, led by Simone Missick, was canceled by CBS in May.

The new season is slated to air in 2022.

Streaming rights to the new episodes will be shared by WBTV sibling HBO Max and Hulu.

The bulk of the series’ cast, including Missick, Wilson Bethel, Camacho, J. Alex Brinson, Ruthie Ann Miles, Lindsay Mendez and Lindsey Gort, are set to return. Since the options on the actors had expired in June following the drama’s cancellation by CBS, they had to make new deals and all reportedly scored raises.

Not coming back is Marg Helgenberger, who in July was cast in NBC’s drama pilot Getaway. The door is reportedly open to Helgenberger and any other All Rise alums to appear on the new season subject to availability.

Dee Harris-Lawrence, who is also executive producer/showrunner on OWN/WBTV’s acclaimed series David Makes Man, is set to return as executive producer/showrunner of All Rise‘s third season.

All Rise follows the chaotic, hopeful and sometimes absurd lives of its judges, prosecutors and public defenders as they work with bailiffs, clerks and cops to get justice for the people of Los Angeles amidst a flawed legal process. It centers on Judge Lola Carmichael (Missick), a highly regarded and impressive deputy district attorney who doesn’t intend to sit back on the bench in her new role, but instead leans in, immediately pushing the boundaries and challenging the expectations of what a judge can be.

All Rise has been a great performer, achieving strong ratings and growing its share from season one to two. Featuring a strong character front and center, Judge Lola Carmichael’s story reflects our audience with powerful affirmation,” said Tina Perry, president, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network. “A special thanks to Warner Bros Television and our incredible showrunner and longtime partner Dee Harris-Lawrence. We can’t wait to get started on season three and bring this show back for long-standing and new fans alike.”

Negotiations between OWN and Warner Bros Television started three months after All Rise was canceled by CBS and OWN parent Discovery days later announced its plans to merge with Warner Bros’ TV parent, AT&T-owned WarnerMedia.

“We are incredibly thrilled that All Rise will be back in court, and we are so thankful to our great partners at OWN for ruling in favor of another season of this powerful drama,” said Brett Paul, President, Warner Bros Television. “Dee Harris-Lawrence and the creative team have done an incredible job of telling important stories about timely subjects which have been brought to life by Simone Missick and the show’s outstanding ensemble cast. We can’t wait for audiences to see what the All Rise team has in store for season three. And we are also grateful to our partners at HBO Max and Hulu, without whose support this would not be possible.”

Luis Ubiñas Named to AT&T Board of Directors

Luis Ubiñas has joined the board…

WarnerMedia parent AT&T has elected the 58-year-old Puerto Rican and Dominican American investor, businessman and nonprofit leader to its board of directors, effective immediately.

Luis Ubiñas

Ubiñas has had a career spanning business, government and the nonprofit sector.

He served as a senior partner at McKinsey & Company, as President of the Ford Foundation, and as an appointee to both the U.S. Competitiveness Committee of the Export-Import Bank and the International Trade Commission. Over the last several years, he has been an investor, advisor and board member.

He was president of the Ford Foundation, the second largest foundation in the U.S., from 2008 to 2013.

Prior to that, he spent 18 years at McKinsey & Company, including as a senior partner and leader of the firm’s West Coast media practice.

Ubiñas is currently the lead director of Electronic Arts; serves on the board of Tanger, the publicly traded REIT; and advises several private and pre-IPO companies.

“Luis is an accomplished executive and a terrific addition to our board,” said Bill Kennard, chairman of AT&T’s board of directors. “His leadership experience and expertise across broadband and wireless, government and the nonprofit sector align with our priorities to serve customers, investors and our communities.”

Ubiñas brings the number of directors on AT&T’s board to 13. He will serve on the board’s Public Policy and Corporate Reputation committee.

AT&T plans to spin off WarnerMedia and merge with Discovery but the deal is not expected to close until the middle of next year.

Rosie Perez Appears in WarnerMedia’s COVID-19 Vaccine PSAs

Rosie Perez is helping to raise awareness about the COVD-19 vaccine…

WarnerMedia is debuting a number of coronavirus vaccine PSAs featuring stars from their series, including the 56-year-old Puerto Rican actress, choreographer and community activist.

Rosie Perez

The public service announcements were created in partnership with the Ad Council, in support of their ongoing COVID-19 Vaccine Education campaigns.

The “It’s Up To You” campaign will air across all WarnerMedia and AT&T-owned cable, digital, streaming and social platforms starting next week.

Meanwhile, the Ad Council will be sharing the PSAs across their own network of distribution platforms.

The PSAs were written and directed by the internal creative team at Warner Media’s 10th Street Studios, which previously created the “Mask Up America” campaign.

In support of COVID-19 safety precautions, each of the campaign’s videos, which include Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Daveed Diggs, was produced remotely.

“WarnerMedia is proud to work with the Ad Council to continue to grow awareness and drive vaccine adoption,” said Dennis Williams, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility, WarnerMedia. “Having Sanjay, Rosie, and Daveed help us create and build a conversation around getting vaccinated will not only inspire action, but also save lives.”

“We continue to be so grateful to the WarnerMedia team for their commitment to educating Americans on protecting themselves and their families from COVID-19,” added Heidi Arthur, Chief Campaign Development Officer, Ad Council. “We know that many Americans have questions about the vaccine, and are so thankful to Sanjay, Rosie, and Daveed for helping educate and inspire Americans to get the answers to their questions so they can make an informed choice about vaccination for themselves and for their families.”

United Airlines’ Oscar Munoz Named to Univision’s Board of Directors

Oscar Munoz is ready to share his (Uni)vision

The 61-year-old Mexican-American businessman and executive chairman of United Airlines has been named as an independent director on Univision’s board of directors.

Oscar Munoz

Prior to his role at United Airlines, Munoz served on the board of parent company United Continental Holdings (UCH) and held multiple executive positions at CSX Corporation and AT&T.

Univision, the Hispanic media giant whose takeover by private equity investors led by former Viacom CFO Wade Davis will soon close, has also named SoftBank Group COO Marcelo Claure; Estée Lauder Companies SVP of public affairs María Cristina “MC” González Noguera; and veteran Walmart exec Gisel Ruiz to the board.

It’s understood that Univision will name at least four more members to the board when the pending takeover by new majority investors is complete. The transaction is expected to close by the end of 2020.

ForgeLight, a firm run by Davis, and Searchlight Capital Partners are buying majority control of Univision from a collection of other private equity investors. Mexico-based production power Televisa is keeping its 36% stake.

Madison Dearborn Partners, Providence Equity Partners, TPG, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Saban Capital Group acquired the company for $13.7 billion in 2007, beating out a rival bid from Televisa. The current transaction, which is expected to close at the end of the year, is expected to value the company at less than $10 billion.

Davis exited Viacom when it merged with CBS last December, emerging soon thereafter as the leader of the Univision bid. The deal, announced last February, was initially expected to close over the summer.

Univision has been run since 2018 by CEO Vince Sadusky. The local television and Hispanic media veteran replaced predecessor Randy Falco after the longtime former NBC exec made a series of out-of-the-box investments in English-language websites and ill-fated cable network venture Fusion. Sadusky has implemented a “back-to-basics,” Spanish-language refocus in an effort to help the flagship broadcast network regain ground it had lost to U.S. rival Telemundo in some pockets of the schedule.

Tessa Ferrer Lands Starring Role on AT&T Audience Network’s Series “Mr. Mercedes”

Tessa Ferrer is going into overdrive…

The 31-year-old part-Puerto Rican actress and former Grey’s Anatomy star will star as a series regular opposite Jack Huston in Season 2 of AT&T Audience Network’s breakout series Mr. Mercedes.

Tessa Ferrer

The second season will be based on King’s best-selling Bill Hodges Trilogy, which includes Mr. Mercedes, Finders Keepers and End of Watch.

Season 1 followed a demented killer Brady Hartsfield (Harry Treadaway) who taunts a retired police detective Bill Hodges (Brendan Gleeson) with a series of lurid letters and emails, forcing the ex-cop to undertake a private, and potentially felonious, crusade to bring the killer to justice before he is able to strike again.

Ferrer will play Cora Babineau, wife of Dr. Felix Babineau (Huston) and head of marketing at a major pharmaceutical corporation, who’s even more ambitious than she is beautiful. If her husband has a genius for manipulating people from the inside out as he reaches into their brains and rewires them, Cora has a genius for influencing people from the outside in. Her beauty, brains and force of will, judiciously softened with poise and extreme charm, make her a formidable saleswoman, of whatever she’s peddling.

Ferrer is onscreen in Blumhouse’s Insidious 4: The Last Key. On television, she played the series regular role of Leah Murphy on Grey’s Anatomy and recurred on CBSExtant and FXX’s You’re the Worst.

Production begins next month in Charleston, SC, on the Sonar Entertainment-produced Stephen King adaptation.

Season 2 of Mr. Mercedes will air this summer on AT&T Audience Network.

Gallegos to Star in Antoine Fuqua’s Drama Series “Ice” for AT&T’s Audience Network

Rey Gallegos is getting Iced

The Latino actor has joined the cast of Ice, Antoine Fuqua’s drama series for AT&T’s Audience Network.

Rey Gallegos 

The 10-episode series, hailing from Fuqua’s Fuqua Films and Entertainment One, was named after the slang word for diamonds. Written/executive produced by Robert Munic, it follows the Green family as they plunge into the underbelly of the L.A. diamond trade.

Gallegos will portray Carlos Vega, a Los Angeles police officer looking to take short cuts whenever possible, while maintaining his position within the LAPD.

He joins previously announced Judith Shekoni. Raymond J. Barry, Cam Gigandet, Jeremy Sisto, Ray Winstone and Donald Sutherland.

Gallegos’ previous credits include Impastor, Gang Related, Sons of Anarchy and Graceland.

AT&T Audience Network Renews Sanchez’s “Kingdom” for Third Season

The sun hasn’t set on Kiele Sanchez’s kingdom…

AT&T Audience Network has ordered a third season of its critically acclaimed martial arts drama series Kingdom, starring the 38-year-old half-Puerto Rican actress.

Kiele Sanchez in Kingdom

“The success of season 2 of Kingdom proves how captivating this series is and how viewers have invested and connected with the characters’ lives,” said Christopher Long, senior vice president, Original Content and Production, AT&T. “Byron Balasco has been at the helm of this gritty mixed martial arts family drama since its inception and has showcased heart wrenching topics that no other show on television has had the strength to touch. We couldn’t be happier to have Byron on for another season and have no doubt that he will create a compelling storyline that no one will forget.”

The series stars Frank Grillo as a former MMA mixed martial arts fighter trying to keep his gym in business.

In addition to Sanchez and Grillo, the series also stars Matt Lauria, Jonathan Tucker, Nick Jonas, Joanna Going and Natalie Martinez.

Creator, writer and showrunner Balasco serves as executive producer.

Kingdom is produced by Endemol Shine Studios and distributed internationally by Endemol Shine International.

Santiago Wins the Third Installment of Telemundo’s “La Voz Kids”

Jonael Santiago is the pint-sized voz of the season…

The 11-year-old Puerto Rican dynamo with an outsize personality was declared the winner of the third installment of La Voz Kids, the Spanish-language kiddie version of The Voice on the Telemundo network.

Jonael Santiago

Santiago’s win — determined by audience voting from more than 1.2 million viewers — was not a slam dunk by any means. This third season boasted a particularly talented lineup of finalists, including 11-year-old Shanty Sumaya, a Mexican American from Texas who already plays gigs in her home state and is particularly good at grupero; and 14-year-old Franser Pazosa, a Cuban-born 14-year-old from Portland, Oregon, with a stunning, versatile voice.

Santiago, a diminutive boy who looks younger than his years, couldn’t match their vocals, but he made up for it with stage presence, attitude and dance moves that evoked Bruno Mars and Michael Jackson. His grand finale was Mars’ “Treasure,” a song chosen for him by coach Natalia Jimenez.

“He’s an amazing package,” Jimenez told Billboard after the win. “He can dance, he can sing, he can act. I wanted him to sing something he can move with. He’s really good at singing ballads, but the most impressive thing is seeing him dance and sing at the same time.”

Even Daddy Yankee, a competing coach, agreed. “It’s so entertaining to watch Jona onstage,” he said after Santiago’s final performance.

Santiago competed against contestants coached by Jimenez, ranchera singer Pedro Fernandez and reggaeton star Daddy Yankee, who shared the stage as coaches for the first time in this third season of La Voz. The show, whose previous coaches have included Paulina Rubio and Prince Royce, has become a ratings success for  Telemundo.

La Voz Kids is a variation on The Voice’s format that features kids as contestants, major music stars as coaches and big-name guest performers. For the Sunday night finale, held — as the entire season was — at Universal Orlando, featured performers for the evening, beside the contestants, were Marc Anthony and Gente de Zona, Mexican singer Lucero and La Voz coach Fernandez.

The winner of La Voz Kids gets a $50,000 cash prize from AT&T that goes toward their education, and a recording contract from Universal Music Latino for the production of a song and video. That could go in different directions for Santiago, who moved from Puerto Rico to Miami two years ago to further his training in music and dance and sings equally well in both languages.

“I felt comfortable with ‘Treasure,’” he said of his final performance. His favorite acts, he says are “Demi Lovato — I love her — and Tori Kelly. I really want to record in the studio ‘All In My Head’ by Tori Kelly; she’s awesome.” However, he added, “Spanish is my first language and I came to Miami two years ago and I’m not perfect [in English yet]. I’m Puerto Rican and I always will be and I’ll talk Spanish forever.”

Vergara: Television’s Highest Paid Actress for a Third Straight Year

It’s mo’ money, mo’ honors for Sofia Vergara

For the third straight year, the 42-year-old Colombian actress and Modern Family star tops Forbes’ list of the television’s highest paid actresses.

Sofia Vergara

Vergara reportedly earned an estimated $37 million between June 2013 and June 2014, according to the financial magazine. That’s more than the top-earning television actor, Ashton Kutcher ($26 million).

While the actress earns a reported $325,000 per episode on her Emmy-winning ABC comedy series, the bulk of her earnings come from her lucrative endorsements and licensing deals.  Vergara is the face of Diet Pepsi, CoverGirl, Head & Shoulders, AT&T and the medication Synthroid.

She’s the also the co-founder of Latin World Entertainment, a multi-million dollar empire. The talent management and entertainment-marketing firm recently teamed up with CNET to launch a Spanish-language tech news site. Vergara’s brand also continues to grow thanks to her 12-year deal with Kmart, a strategic move to better appeal to Hispanic shoppers.

Earlier this year, she also launched her first fragrance for HSN and starred in the indie movie Chef, which received rave critical reviews and became the only summer indie to hit $30 million at the box office.

Vergara’s annual take is up from last year’s high of $30 million and her $19-million estimate in 2012.