Martín Saracho to Star in Starzplay’s Spanish-Language Dramedy Series “Yellow”

Martín Saracho is seeing yellow

The Latin American actor will star opposite Tessa Ía and Lizeth Selene in Starzplay’s Spanish-language dramedy series Yellow (w/t).

Martín SarachoProduction officially kicked off on the project in Mexico City on Monday.

Ía will portray “Dan” who is described as someone who is extremely competitive and who thinks winning by cheating is worth twice as much. Dan finds “Nico”, played by Selene, to be her impossible love. Nico is described as sincere to the point of being abrasive, someone who has the heart of a child, and who lives without constraints.

Saracho will play Richie, a failed former Formula 1 driver whose promising career ended after a catastrophic accident forced him to stop racing and is now a taxi driver.

From Sofía Auza and Silviana AguirreYellow tells the story of Dan and Nico, two female fugitives who steal a stick-shift taxi to escape from the authorities. Realizing that the car is not automatic, they are forced to kidnap Richie, the taxi driver, who also happens to be a suicidal ex-Formula 1 racer. Constantly having to thwart his suicide attempts, the three reach an agreement: if he takes them to the border, they will kill him.

“I wrote Yellow because I wanted to tell a story about friendship and the meaning of love, a story that had emotional impact hiding under a fun, comedic tone,” said Auza, series co-creator and co-showrunner, in an exclusive statement to Deadline. “The relationship between Dan and Nico is one of the most important elements of the show. I wanted to explore the complex lines between friendship and love in female relationships.”

Produced by The Immigrant, which is backed by global producer-distributor Fremantle, the 6-episode, 30-minute series is scheduled to shoot for 7 weeks on location in and around Baja California and Mexico City. Yellow is created, executive produced, and directed by showrunners Auza and Aguirre.

Yellow will take viewers on a speedy twist and turn ride into this character-driven dramedy about friendship, happiness, and love,” said Jeff Cooke, Senior Vice President, Programing, International Digital Networks for Starz. “We are delighted to partner with The Immigrant, who offer audiences innovative, fresh, and impactful storytelling, reinforcing our commitment to co-producing locally made and culturally relevant content.”

Executive producing on behalf of The Immigrant alongside Aguirre is Camila Jimenez Villa.

Yellow is the perfect example of the shows we love to make: fun, daring, and profound, all at the same time, said Jimenez Villa, CEO of The Immigrant. “Sofia is an extraordinary creator whose worlds are beautifully unique, inhabited by complex, hilarious characters who you can’t help but fall in love with. “With Yellow, Silvana and Sofia will take audiences on a thrilling journey amongst the beautiful landscapes of Baja California in search of happiness and the meaning of friendship.”

The series will be available on Starzplay across its footprint in Europe and Latin America, and in the US including Puerto Rico via Pantaya. A release date will be set in the future.

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Cara Santana to Star in “Daughter of the Bride”

Bride on, Cara Santana!

The 37-year-old Latina actress has signed on to star opposite Marcia Gay Harden, Halston Sage, Andrew Richardson and Aidan Quinn in Annette Haywood-Carter’s indie comedy Daughter of the Bride (w/t) for MarVista Entertainment and Particular Crowd.

Cara SantanaThe film currently in production centers on Diane (Harden) and Kate (Sage) — mother and daughter and inseparable friends, whose lives are turned upside down when mom announces her engagement to a mystery man (Quinn) that she’s been dating for only a few weeks. In a series of comical events, Kate must come to terms with letting her mother be happy with someone else while she navigates her own love life and career aspirations. Kate subconsciously tries to sabotage the wedding plans, despite officiating the ceremony, and unexpectedly meets a mystery man (Richardson) of her own that seems too good to be true.

Karen Bloch Morse wrote the script.

The film is being co-produced by MarVista and Particular Crowd, with MarVista’s Larry Grimaldi, Hannah Pillemer, and Fernando Szew and Particular Crowd’s Mariana Sanjurjo, Peter Bevan and Tomás Yankelevich exec producing. Summer Crockett Moore, Cara Santana, Julie Yorn, and Patrick Walmsley will serve as executive producers.

Santana appeared on Starz’s drama series Vida, and on the Netflix comedy series Santa Clarita Diet, opposite Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant. She was also seen starring in Jimmy Tatro’s series The Real Bros of Simi Valley for Facebook Watch,  prior to that appearing in Malcolm Goodwin’s Be the Light and WGN’s Salem.

Carlos Valdes to Star in Hulu’s Musical Romantic Comedy Series “Up Here”

Carlos Valdes is movin’ on up (here)

The 33-year-old Colombian-American actor and singer will star in Hulu’s musical romantic comedy series Up Here alongside Mae Whitman.

Carlos ValdesValdes will portray Miguel, who is described as sensitive and thoughtful, with an artistic sensibility and a romantic streak. Miguel has always struggled with the feeling that he doesn’t quite belong. But after a cataclysmic breakup, Miguel has decided to reinvent himself, burying his feelings and ditching a promising career as a video game concept artist for the lucrative world of investment banking, determined never to get hurt again.

Written by Steven Levenson, Danielle Sanchez-Witzel, Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez and directed by Thomas Kail, Up Here is set in New York City in the waning days of 1999. It follows the extraordinary story of one ordinary couple, Lindsay (Whitman) and Miguel, as they fall in love and discover that the single greatest obstacle to finding happiness together might just be themselves – and the treacherous world of memories, obsessions, fears, and fantasies that lives inside their heads.

Anderson-Lopez and Lopez will pen original songs for the series.

Production on the show, which has an eight-episode straight-to-series order, is set to begin this summer in New York. 20th Television is the studio, producing with Kail’s Old 320 Sycamore Productions.

Valdes most recently appeared in the Starz Watergate drama Gaslit as FBI agent Paul Magallanes. Before that, he had a seven-season run as Cisco Ramon on The Flash and numerous other Arrowverse shows including Arrow, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl.

He made his Broadway debut in 2013 in the Tony Award-winning musical Once.

Tanya Saracho Developing Starz’s Half-Hour Drama “Lovesong”

Tanya Saracho is seeing Starz again…

The Mexican American screenwriter, who created the network’s acclaimed series Vida, is currently developing the half-hour drama Lovesong for Starz.

Tanya SarachoMusician and actor Johnny Flynn will co-executive produce the project and serve as composer.

Lovesong follows two Mexican American childhood friends living in London as they both become entangled in a torturous love triangle with the same captivating singer-songwriter. A love story born out of betrayal and paid for with the cost of friendship. Steeped in the East London music scene, the series embarks on a cinematic contemplation of love, sex, identity, purpose, and the price of happiness.

The announcement came ahead of Starz’ inaugural #TakeTheLead summit on Thursday that will feature Saracho’s participation in the “Power of Allyship” panel about fighting for representation.

“We are beyond thrilled to partner with Tanya to bring her bold and tantalizing love story to life,” said Kathryn Busby, President, Original Programming, Starz. “Throughout her career and from Vida to Lovesong on Starz, her dedication to Latine representation embodies the spirit of #TakeTheLead.”

Through her overall deal with UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group, Saracho will executive produce Lovesong, along with co-executive producer Christine Dávila, under her production banner Ojalá Productions.

“This story is very much a child of the pandemic, born from those times when we were yearning for love stories to soothe the soul and light the way through the dark times. This is also when the light of Johnny Flynn’s music found me and lit the way into the story. While I spent five months in London, Johnny was generous enough to lead me through his lived experience of the East London music scene, which now comprises the world of ‘Lovesong,’” said Saracho. “It’s wonderful to be coming home to Starz to conceive of my new story of love, a place that truly nurtured and supported me while I crafted the love story of the two Hernandez sisters in Vida, and I couldn’t be happier to return to bring this new narrative to life.”

Lovesong will be produced by UCP and Lionsgate Television for Starz.

Vida ran on Starz for three seasons.

Vico Ortiz Signs with Paradigm

Vico Ortiz has new representation.

The Latinx, non-binary and gender-fluid actor has signed with Paradigm.

Vico OrtizOrtiz is a known for their work in HBO Max’s Our Flag Means Death and The Sex Lives of College Girls, and Starz’s Vida.

Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Ortiz’s first breakthrough role was in Amazon Prime Video’s Transparent. They then appeared in recurring roles for Freeform’s The Fosters and Everything’s Gonna Be Okay, and Netflix’s Lucifer. They appeared in Starz’s Vida, where their drag king alter ego Vico Suave made their screen debut.

Currently Ortiz is a series regular on Our Flag Means Death, appearing opposite stars Taika Waititi and Rhys Darby. They play Jim, the first non-binary pirate to exist in a period piece. Their additional credits include S.O.Z: Soldados o. Zombies, American Horror Story: 1984Criminal Minds9-1-1Ray Donovan and Jane The Virgin.

Beyond television, they were a co-lead in The Syed Family Xmas Eve Game Night, which premiered at TIFF in 2021. Ortiz also received a 2021 Queerties Award nomination for their performance in the buzzed about queer digital series, These Thems.

Beyond their on-screen work, Ortiz is an activist and advocate for LGBTQ+ rights. They championed organizations including The Dru Project and the Los Angeles LGBTQ Center..

Ortiz is a known for their work in HBO Max’s Our Flag Means Death and The Sex Lives of College Girls, and Starz’s Vida.

Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Ortiz’s first breakthrough role was in Amazon Prime Video’s Transparent. They then appeared in recurring roles for Freeform’s The Fosters and Everything’s Gonna Be Okay, and Netflix’s Lucifer. They appeared in Starz’s Vida, where their drag king alter ego Vico Suave made their screen debut.

Currently Ortiz is a series regular on Our Flag Means Death, appearing opposite stars Taika Waititi and Rhys Darby. They play Jim, the first non-binary pirate to exist in a period piece. Their additional credits include S.O.Z: Soldados o. Zombies, American Horror Story: 1984Criminal Minds9-1-1Ray Donovan and Jane The Virgin.

Beyond television, they were a co-lead in The Syed Family Xmas Eve Game Night, which premiered at TIFF in 2021. Ortiz also received a 2021 Queerties Award nomination for their performance in the buzzed about queer digital series, These Thems.

Beyond their on-screen work, Ortiz is an activist and advocate for LGBTQ+ rights. They championed organizations including The Dru Project and the Los Angeles LGBTQ Center.

Talisa Garcia Makes History as First Openly Trans Actor Cast in a Lucasfilm Production

Talisa Garcia is making LGBTQ+ entertainment history…

The Chilean-born British actress has been cast in the highly anticipated Disney+ series Willow, marking the first known occasion an openly trans actor has been cast in a production from Disney-owned Lucasfilm, home to the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises.

Talisa GarciaIn the television spinoff of the 1980s fantasy classic, which is now in post-production, a princess assembles a party to join her on a quest to rescue her twin brother.

Garcia is playing a queen and the mother to Tony Revolori’s character who takes part in the quest. Garcia’s role is a small speaking part and the actress may ultimately only appear in one episode.

The casting also marks the first known time a trans actor has portrayed a cis character in a Disney+ film or series.

During the shoot, there were reports of great pride and support among many of Garcia’s colleagues about her casting.

Garcia was cast in the project long before the storm developed surrounding Disney’s response to the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill and new wave of concerns emerged about on-screen representation in Disney productions.

The studio has been under fire in recent weeks for its response to the controversial Florida legislation, which bans teachers from giving lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity to children under the age of nine.

The studio’s initial silence surrounding the bill angered and frustrated many staff who took it as a slight to the LGBTQ+ community and saw it as an example of the House of Mouse not doing enough to support diversity, something critics also believe the studio could do more of on screen. Marvel Studios executive Victoria Alonso was among those to voice criticism at the recent GLAAD Media awards.

Last year, Raya And The Last Dragon actress Patti Harrison became the first known trans actor to voice a character in a Disney animated movie. In 2019, SpiderMan’s Zach Barack became Marvel Studios’ first transgender actor. More recently, non-binary trans actor iris menas portrayed Anybodys in 20th Century Studios’ West Side Story reboot. Meanwhile, there have been reports online in recent days that Disney+ series Ironheart is looking to recruit a trans actress.

In 2021, Chloe Zhao’s film Eternals featured the first-ever gay superhero in a MCU movie – with Brian Tyree Henry taking on the role of Eternal and inventor Phastos. Lauren Ridloff also starred in the feature film – making history as the first deaf actor ever to play a superhero in a studio feature film.

Garcia is best known for BBC crime-thriller Baptiste.

Her other credits include Starz!’s The Girlfriend Experience and TBSMiracle Workers.

La La Anthony Upped to Series Regular on Starz’s Drama Series “BMF”

There’s much more BMF in La La Anthony’s future…

The 39-year-old Puerto Rican television personality, author, businesswoman, producer and actress, who recurred in the first season of Starz’s drama series BMF, has been upped to series regular status for Season 2.

La La AnthonyThe series hails from executive producer Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and writer/executive producer and Detroit native Randy Huggins.

Anthony will reprise her role as Markisha Taylor, who will have an expanded storyline in the second season. Markisha is the smart, sophisticated and street savvy wife of a powerful Detroit dealer. Despite the risk, Terry begins to pursue her relentlessly and they develop a friendship.

Anthony joins returning cast including Demetrius “Lil Meech” Flenory Jr., the son of Demetrius “Big Meech” Flenory; Da’Vinchi, Russell Hornsby, Michole Briana White, Myles Truitt and Steve Harris. Snoop Dogg, Arkeisha “Kash Doll” Knight, Wood Harris and Serayah recur in the series.

BMF is inspired by the true story of two brothers who rose from the decaying streets of southwest Detroit in the late 1980’s and gave birth to one of the most influential crime families in this country.

The series is executive produced by Jackson, alongside Huggins. Heather Zuhlke joins as an executive producer on Season 2 with Anthony Wilson and Anne Clements who are both set to return to executive produce.

BMF is produced through Jackson’s G-Unit Film and Television in association with Lionsgate Television for Starz.

Starz Renews Monica Raymund’s Crime Drama Series “Hightown” for Third Season

Monica Raymund is riding high(town)

Starz has renewed its critically acclaimed crime drama series Hightown, starring the 35-year-old half-Dominican American actress, for a third season.

Monica RaymundThe Cape Cod-set series is created and executive produced by Rebecca Cutter and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Lionsgate Television.

“Hightown is such an incredible show, and we could not be happier that it’s been renewed for a third season,” said Kathryn Busby, President, Original Programming for Starz. “We are excited to return to Cape Cod to see our iconic characters battle their past mistakes as well as new foes in the dangerous underworld that lies beneath this idyllic setting.”

In Season 2, the picture-perfect version of summer on Cape Cod clashed with its off-season reality. Per the logline: Achieving her dream of becoming a real cop, Jackie Quinones (Raymund) is out to do some good in this world. Thrust immediately into the crime wave of deadly carfentanyl flooding the Cape, Jackie is laser-focused on bringing down drug dealer Frankie Cuevas (Amaury Nolasco), the man Jackie holds responsible for the death of her best friend, Junior. For Jackie, it is personal — but then again, for Jackie, everything is personal.

When Frankie’s cousin Jorge (Luis Guzmán) joins his operation, he introduces a new level of violence and chaos. With disgraced officer Ray Abruzzo (James Badge Dale) off the force and mired in depression, Jackie finds a new partner in Leslie (Tonya Glanz), the only other woman on the force. Through it all, Jackie must walk the tightrope of sobriety as she struggles to stay above an ocean of secrets, betrayal and the shame and failure of her past.

Riley Voelkel, Atkins Estimond, and Dohn Norwood also star.

Cutter made her television directorial debut in Season 2. Oscar-nominated filmmaker Rachel Morrison also directed two of the second season’s 10 episodes.

Raymund, Brandon Sonnier, Radium Cheung, Antonio Negret and Eagle Egilsson also directed in Season 2.

Season 2 is streaming on all Starz platforms.

Paloma Guzman to Recur on Starz’s “Power Book III: Raising Kanan”

Paloma Guzman has (power) booked a new project…

The Latina actress has landed a heavily recurring role in the Starz/Lionsgate Power prequel series, Power Book III: Raising Kanan.

Paloma GuzmanFrom creator and showrunner Sascha PennPower Book III: Raising Kanan takes viewers back to the ’90s and the early years of the now-deceased Kanan Stark, portrayed in Courtney Kemp’s original series by Curtis50 CentJackson.

Guzman will play Detective Regina Foyle, a veteran NYPD detective with a sensitive yet rugged side. She’s a contradiction in all the best ways.

Power Book III: Raising Kanan is executive produced by Kemp through her company End of Episode and Jackson through his G-Unit Film and Television.

Penn is the creator/showrunner of Raising Kanan. Lionsgate Television produces the series for Starz.

Known for her role as Jacki Molina in Pretty Little Liars, Guzman recently wrapped filming a major recurring role on the upcoming season of Roswell, New Mexico.

Her previous credits include a recurring role on the final season of HBO’s The Deuce, as well as roles on Law & Order: SVU, FBI, Shades of Blue, among others.

Psalms Salazar to Star on Season Two of Katori Hall’s Starz Drama Series “P-Valley”

Psalms Salazar is officially a (P-)Valley girl..

The part-Puerto Rican actress has joined the cast of Katori Hall’s P-Valley series for the second season.

Psalms SalazarSalazar joins returning cast members Nicco Annan, Elarica Johnson, Brandee Evans, Shannon Thornton, Parker Sawyers and more.

Based on Hall’s play Pussy ValleyP-Valley Season 2 returns to the Mississippi Delta where lies an oasis of grit and glitter in a rough patch of human existence where beauty can be hard to find. This Southern-fried, hour-long drama tells the kaleidoscopic story of a “little strip club that could” and the big characters who come through its doors — the hopeful, the lost, the broken, the ballers, the beautiful and the damned. Trap music meets film noir in this lyrical and atmospheric series that dares to ask what happens when small-town folk dream beyond the boundaries of the Piggly Wiggly and the pawnshop.

Salazar joins the cast as a series regular. She plays Whisper, an enigmatic free spirit with a spooky streak who speaks in riddles and eerie truths. She’s blessed with a direct line to the universe and sight beyond the earthly realm. The air to Roulette’s fire, Whisper becomes a full-blown tornado when she hits the pole.

Season 2 will take place five months after the Season 1 finale and will take on The Pynk’s struggle to thrive amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

P-Valley also features Harriett D. Foy, Dan J. Johnson, Tyler Lepley and Skyler Joy.

Hall serves as showrunner and executive producer. Dante Di Loreto also serves as an executive producer on the series. Lionsgate Television produces P-Valley for Starz.

Salazar’s previous credits include Girl Lost: A Hollywood Story.