Gael Garcia Bernal to Star in Marvel Studios’ Halloween Special “The Nevers” for Disney+

It’s never say nevers for Gael Garcia Bernal.

The 43-year-old Mexican Golden Globe-winning actor and producer will star opposite Laura Donnelly in The Nevers, Marvel StudiosHalloween special for Disney+.

Gael García Bernal

Plot details for the untitled special are being kept under wraps, but, Garcia Bernal is reportedly playing a character based on the Marvel character Werewolf by Night, who is capable of transforming into a werewolf while retaining human intellects.

No official word yet on who Donnelly will portray, but if Garcia Bernal is Werewolf by Night, she potentially could be Nina Price, who becomes Vampire by Night. Price is the niece of character Jack Russell/Werewolf by Night and a vampire/werewolf hybrid. She carried the lycan gene and was changed further after being bitten by a vampire.

The special is due to begin production in coming months and follows Marvel’s Disney+ shows WandaVisionThe Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Loki and Hawkeye.

Marvel and Disney also have shows in the works based on She-HulkMs. Marvel and Moon Knight.

Mozart in the Jungle and The Motorcycle Diaries star Garcia Bernal most recently was seen in the M. Night Shyamalan film Old and the HBO Max series Station Eleven.

He’ll next appear in the Jennifer Lopez-led feature The Mother and Amazon film Cassandro.

Disney’s “Encanto” Soundtrack, Featuring Songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Rises to No. 1 on Billboard 200

Lin-Manuel Miranda has left America encantado

The soundtrack to the Walt Disney animated musical film Encanto, featuring songs written by the 41-year-old Puerto Rican actor, songwriter, singer, playwright, producer, and film director, has surged to No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart dated January 15.

EncantoThe Encanto soundtrack jumps 7-1 in its sixth week on the list.

It’s the first soundtrack to hit No. 1 in more than two years – since Disney’s Frozen II chilled atop the list for one week, on the chart dated December 14, 2019.

Encanto earned 72,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in the week ending Januaruy 6 (up 76%), according to MRC Data. Streaming activity of the set’s songs drove the majority of that unit sum.

Of Encanto’s 72,000 equivalent album units earned in the U.S. in the week ending January 6, SEA units comprise 58,000 (up 91%; equaling 87.69 million on-demand official streams of the set’s tracks), album sales comprise 11,000 (up 33%) and TEA units comprise 3,000 (up 33%).

The album’s two most popular songs of the week, by SEA units, are “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” and “Surface Pressure.” “Bruno” and “Surface” both debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 chart dated January 8 and should jump up the list dated January 15.

The Encanto soundtrack, with songs written by Miranda and scores by Germaine Franco, was released on Nov. 19, before the film arrived in U.S. theaters on November 24. The movie was released via the Disney+ streaming service a month later — which is likely helping the album’s exposure and promotion in the last two tracking weeks. A week ago, the album leaped 110-7 after its premiere on Disney+.

Encanto is just the sixth animated film soundtrack to hit No. 1 since the Billboard 200 began regularly publishing on a weekly basis in 1956. Encanto follows Frozen II (one week at No. 1, 2019), Frozen (13 weeks, 2014), Jack Johnson’s Curious George (one, 2006), Pocahontas (one, 1995) and The Lion King (10, 1994-95). (All but Curious George are Disney films.)

Rosario Dawson to Help Reveal This Year’s SAG Awards Nominations

Rosario Dawson is helping with a big reveal…

The 42-year-old Puerto Rican and Cuban American actress and activist will team up with Vanessa Hudgens to announce this year’s SAG Awards nominations on Wednesday, January 12, at 10:00 am ET/7 am PT via Instagram Live.

Rosario DawsonThis marks the second consecutive year the SAG nominations will be announced via Instagram Live as part of the @sagawardsInstagram Stories.

With the Golden Globes mired in a diversity scandal, resulting in a non-telecast of the awards show on NBC, the SAG Awards this year reps the first big awards show to honor the best of actors and actresses in television and film for 2021.

SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher will give an introduction before the SAG nominations are revealed.

Nominations for the Outstanding Action Performances by Television and Film ensembles will follow, with announcements made by SAG Awards Committee members Jason George and Elizabeth McLaughlin.

The 28th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards will be simulcast live on TNT and TBS on Sunday, February 27, 2022 at 8:00 pm ET / 5:00 pm PT from The Barker Hangar in Santa Monica.

Dawson recently starred in the Hulu series Dopesickand stars next in the Disney+/Lucasfilm series Ahsoka as Ahsoka Tano and the HBO Max/DC series DMZ

She’s filming Disney’s new Haunted Mansion movie with Owen Wilson, Tiffany Haddish, LaKeith Stanfield and Danny DeVito.

Her feature credits include Harmony Korine’s KidsSpike Lee’s He Got Game and The 25th Houras well as Alexander, Rent, Clerks II, Top Five, Trance, Unstoppable and Men in Black II, as well as the Sin City franchise.

For her performance in Seven Pounds, she won Best Actress in a Motion Picture Award at the 2009 NAACP Image Awards.

Matt Lopez Signs Multi-Year Overall Deal with ABC Signature

Matt Lopez has an exciting new deal…

The Latino screenwriter, the creator/executive producer of ABC’Promised Land, has signed a multi-year overall deal with ABC Signature, the studio behind the upcoming multigenerational Latinx family drama.

Matt Lopez

ABC Signature is part of Disney Television Studios.

Lopez’s Promised Land is an epic, generation-spanning drama about the Sandovals, a Latinx family vying for wealth and power in California’s Sonoma Valley, premiering on January 24, 2022, on ABC.

The series’ all-Latinx cast (including John Ortiz and Christina Ochoa) and majority Latinx crew are filled with people whose stories resemble the Sandoval family.

“‘La familia’ is how the cast and crew of Promised Land refer to each other, and it’s how I think of Jonnie Davis, Tracy Underwood, and their amazing team — as my creative family, said Lopez in a statement to Deadline. “The courage and integrity they have shown in supporting this show make it clear that ABC Signature is committed to telling compelling stories in fresh and exciting ways, and it’s where I want to continue to work and create for years to come.”

Added Davis, President of ABC Signature, “Matt Lopez is homegrown Disney talent, who has worked on the feature side for years. His upcoming Promised Land is a love letter to his family, especially his Cuban grandfather. When he shared this personal story with us and our friends at ABC, we all knew this had to be a television series, and we believe it will be the first of many from this unique and talented writer.”

Lopez’s other recent projects include the upcoming feature film Father of the Bride, a reboot of the classic film franchise, for Warner Bros. and Plan B starring Andy Garcia and Gloria Estefan; the family comedy Alexander, for Disney + with 21 Laps and Henson Co; and Wraith, a horror-thriller for Netflix.  Matt created and executive produced the television series Gone.

His additional writing credits for the big screen include The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Race to Witch Mountain, and Bedtime Stories.

Lopez segued into writing and producing through the Disney Writers Program after a career as an attorney and business affairs executive for DreamWorks.

Alanna Ubach to Appear on Season 2 of HBO Max’s “The Flight Attendant”

Alanna Ubach is taking Flight

The 46-year-old Puerto Rican and Mexican American actress will appear on Season 2 of HBO Max’s critically acclaimed series The Flight Attendant as a recurring guest star.

Alanna UbachUbach will appear in the new season—which is currently in production—alongside returning series regulars Kaley Cuoco, Zosia Mamet, Griffin Matthews, Deniz Akdeniz and Rosie Perez; new series regulars Mo McRae, Callie Hernandez and JJ Soria; returning recurring guest stars T.R. Knight, Yasha Jackson and Audrey Grace Marshall; and new recurring guest stars Cheryl Hines, Jessie Ennis, Mae Martin, Margaret Cho, Santiago Cabrera and Shohreh Aghdashloo.

The Max Original, based on Chris Bohjalian’s 2018 novel of the same name, centers on Cassie Bowden (Cuoco), a reckless flight attendant with an alcohol problem who in Season 1, wakes up in the wrong hotel, in the wrong bed, with a dead man—and no idea what happened.

Season 2 finds Cassie living her best sober life in Los Angeles while moonlighting as a CIA asset in her spare time. But when an overseas assignment leads her to inadvertently witness a murder, she becomes entangled in another international brouhaha.

Ubach will play Carol Atkinson, also known as Black Market Carol, a perfectly groomed, icy flight attendant who is not a fan of Cassie.

Ubach is best known for her work in the Legally Blonde films, along with her turn as Mamá Imelda in Disney/Pixar’s Coco, and as Jo Hernandez-Frumpkis in the Bravo series Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce.

She recurs opposite Kate Beckinsale on the Paramount+ series Guilty Party, and will return for the sophomore seasons of Disney+’s Monsters at Work, HBO’s Euphoria, and Hulu’s Crossing Swords.

The actress has also appeared in Netflix’s Maya and the Three, Fox’s Filthy Rich, FX’s Snowfall, AMC’s Dietland, Amazon’s Hand of God, Showtime’s Californication and HBO’s Hung, among others.

Additional film credits include BombshellGloria Bell, To the Bone, Bad TeacherRango, Waiting and its sequel Still Waiting and Clockwatchers.

Lisette Alexis to Star in Disney+’s “National Treasure” Television Series

Lisette Alexis has struck gold…

The young Mexican American actress will star as the lead in Disney+’s National Treasure television series from Disney Branded Television and ABC Signature.

Lisette Alexis

The project, executive produced by the films’ producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Jon Turteltaub and writers Marianne and Cormac Wibberley, is an expansion of the National Treasure movie franchise told from the point of view of a young heroine (Alexis) — a DREAMer in search of answers about her family–who embarks on the adventure of a lifetime to uncover the truth about the past and save a lost Pan-American treasure.

The series, whose pilot episode is written by the Wibberleys and will be directed by Mira Nair, centers on Jess (Alexis), a Latina whose brilliant and resourceful mind loves a good mystery, and she has a natural talent for solving puzzles. Over the course of the show, Jess will uncover her own buried history, as well as the truth about her parents and her connection to a long-lost treasure.

In the television extension of the National Treasure franchise, Jess is taking the proverbial torch from Benjamin Gates, the National Treasure films’ protagonist played by Nicolas Cage.

Production is starting in early 2022.

Alexis stars opposite Sierra McCormick in the Tribeca Film Festival selection We Need To Do Something, produced by Josh Mallerman.

Ilana Peña Teaming Up with Crystal Ferreiro to Develop the Dramedy “Hermanas” for The CW

It’s sister time for Ilana Peña

The Latina writer, who created Diary of a Future President, is teaming up once again with the Disney+ series’ writer Crystal Ferreiro on the project Hermanasa drama with some humor in development at the CW.

Ilana Peña

The project hails from Jerry Bruckheimer Television and CBS Studios, where Peña and JBTV are under deals.

Written by Ferreiro with Peña supervising, Hermanas follows three sisters—individually described as a “hot mess,” a “rigid overachiever” and a “homemaker who never left”—who reunite in their small town in Naples, FL after their brother, the crown jewel of the family, gets into a debilitating accident. As the women put their resentments aside to help him, the Primés realize that the sanitized version you present to family evaporates when you’re in close quarters, and what’s exposed is your most messy, authentic and vulnerable self.

Ferreiro executive produces alongside Peña, who executive produces under her Tilde Productions banner and will serve as showrunner. Jerry Bruckheimer, Jonathan Littman and KristieAnne Reed executive produce for Jerry Bruckheimer Television.

Peña is creator, showrunner, EP and director of Diary of a Future President, which recently saw the release of its second season. Ferreiro was a writer on the CBS Studios-produced series.

Carlos Vives to Star in Disney+’s Latin American Series “El Club de Los Graves”

Carlos Vives is joining El Club

The 60-year-old Colombian singer, songwriter and actor has officially joined Disney+‘s new Latin American fiction series titled El Club de Los Graves.

Carlos Vives

The story follows Amaranto Molina (Vives), an unconventional music teacher who comes to teach at a school specialized in music education, governed by ancient formulas that ignores students who do not comply with the rules established by the commercial success.

The director of the institute, Eduardo Kramer (Julián Arango), chooses each year five students nicknamed Los Agudos to join the prestigious Teen Band of the school. Molina, then, is assigned as a teacher at Los Graves, a group of students who are left out of the selection because his talent does not meet market standards.

In this way and with disruptive methods, the eccentric teacher will undertake together with the boys a transformative musical journey that will help him heal wounds and will inspire each of the young people to express their unique talent, finding together a hopeful common path and at the same time, they will discover the mysterious past that the professor hides.

The cast of El club de Los Graves is made up of Catalina Polo, María Fernanda Marín, Manuela Duque, Salomé Camargo, Elena Vives, Brainer Gamboa, Kevin Bury, Gregorio Umaña, Pitizion, Juan Manuel Lenis, Juan Camilo González, Giseth, Zoila and Deisy Mariano, and Luis Fernando Salas.

The series will consist of 10 episodes of 30 minutes.

El Club de Los Graves, which will be shot in Colombia, will start airing in 2022.

Vives’ previous acting credits include La estrategia del caracol, La mujer doble and Cadena Braga.

Justina Machado to Appear in First-Ever The Muppets Halloween Television Special

It’ll be a Haunted Halloween for Justina Machado.

The 49-year-old Puerto Rican actress will appear in the first Halloween television special featuring The Muppets.

Justina Machado

Muppets Haunted Mansion will premiere on Friday, October 8, exclusively on Disney+.

Starring in the special alongside the Muppets are Will Arnett (as The Ghost Host), Yvette Nicole Brown (The Hearse Driver), Darren Criss (The Caretaker) and Taraji P. Henson (The Bride).

In Muppets Haunted Mansion, the Great Gonzo – world-famous daredevil artiste, has done it all, seen it all and survived it all. But on Halloween night, the fearless Gonzo takes on the greatest challenge of his life by spending one very daring night in the most grim grinning place on Earth: the Haunted Mansion.

In addition to Machado, Muppets Haunted Mansion will also feature appearances from Chrissy Metz, Alfonso Ribeiro, Edward Asner, Jeannie Mai, Danny Trejo, Sasheer Zamata, Craig Robinson, Skai Jackson, Pat Sajak, Geoff Keighley, Kim Irvine and John Stamos as himself.

The Muppets Haunted Mansion EP will be released on October 8 from Walt Disney Records, and will include three new original songs: “Rest in Peace,” “Life Hereafter,” and “Tie the Knot Tango,” plus a cover of the 1970s classic, “Dancing in the Moonlight.”

Victoria Alonso Promoted to President of Physical, Post Production, VFX & Animation at Marvel Studios

It’s another Marvel-ous moment for Victoria Alonso

The 55-year-old Argentine film producer has been promoted to president, physical and post production, visual effects, and animation production at Marvel Studios.

Victoria Alonso

A 15-year studio veteran, Alonso will oversee the divisions across the studio’s slate of films and series and continue to report to Marvel Studios co-president Louis D’Esposito.

“Victoria has been an incredible partner and part of our team since the very first Iron Man,” said Kevin Feige, president, Marvel Studios and chief creative officer, Marvel, and D’Esposito on Monday. “She is one of the most dynamic, candid and accessible executives in the industry and we’re thrilled that she’ll continue to be by our side in this elevated role as we lead Marvel Studios into the future.”

Alonso will continue to serve as executive producer on all upcoming feature films including EternalsDoctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and Thor: Love and Thunder, as well as EP on Marvel Studios’ upcoming series for Disney+ including Hawkeye, Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk and Moon Knight.

“When Louis first suggested I come to work with the team on Iron Man, I never could have imagined the adventure ahead, and as far as I’m concerned, it has only just begun!” Alonso said. “We have an absolutely incredible group of people who are bringing their many talents to the exciting slate of films and series we have on the horizon, and I’m especially thrilled about ramping up our studio’s animation efforts, which is a personal passion of mine. Look forward to more singing!”

Alonso joined Marvel in 2006 as the company’s EVP of visual effects and post production, doubling as co-producer on Iron Man, a role she reprised on Iron Man 2, Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger.

In 2011, she was upped to executive producer on the blockbuster The Avengers, a role she has maintained on all Marvel Studios releases since then including Iron Man 3, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Captain America: Civil War, Thor: The Dark World, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ant-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Captain Marvel, Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man: Far From Home, Black Widow and most recently Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.

During her tenure at the studio, Marvel films have amassed over $23 billion in global box office.

In 2021, Alonso became an Emmy-nominated producer for her work on the MCU’s first series on Disney+WandaVision. She has also become an important voice in Hollywood as a producer, a Latina, and a senior female executive.

She was named one of People en Español Magazine’s top “Poderosa” Most Influential Hispanic Women in 2019 and 2020, and was honored in 2015 with the Muse Award for Outstanding Vision and Achievement from the New York Women in Film & Television.

She was also the first woman to be presented with the Harold Lloyd Award from the Advanced Imaging Society, which is given to a filmmaker who has created a body of work and specific achievements in 3D that advanced the motion picture art form.

In 2017, she was the first woman to be honored with the Visionary Award at the 15th Annual VES Awards for her advancement of unforgettable storytelling through visual effects.