Wilds to Star in Indie Drama “Fruitvale”

Tristan Wilds and Melonie Diaz will be working with an Oscar-winning actress in the near future.

The 22-year-old part-Dominican American actor and 27-year-old Puerto Rican American actress have joined the cast of Fruitvale, an indie drama about a true-life police shooting being produced by Forest Whitaker.

Tristan Wilds

Ryan Coogler will make his feature debut writing and directing the film, which comes in the wake of the controversy surrounding the February 26 death of Trayvon Martin, a black teenager shot and killed by a local neighborhood watch officer in Florida.

Chronicle’s Michael B. Jordan and Octavia Spencer, who won Best Supporting Actress at this year’s Oscars for her role in The Help, are already on board for Fruitvale, which tells the story of Oscar Grant, a young black man detained on New Year’s Day 2009 by the Bay Area Rapid Transit police and shot in the back and killed. The event was captured by many cell phone cameras, with the ensuing trial and its verdict causing protests and riots.

Melonie Diaz

Wilds will play Grant’s best friend while Diaz will appear as the mother of his young child.

Wilds previously worked with Jordan on the George Lucas-produced World War II aerial war movie Red Tails. He’s also one of the stars of the CW’s 90210.

Diaz has guest-starred on several TV shows, including Person of Interest and CSI: Miami. She’s also appeared in the films Nothing Like the Holidays and Hamlet 2.

Beatriz Cast in “The Smart One” Comedy Pilot

Stephanie Beatriz could be getting her big break in television—with a little help from Ellen DeGeneres

The Latina actress, who has spent several seasons with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, has been added as a cast regular on ABC‘s comedy pilot The Smart One, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Stephanie Beatriz

From Warner Bros. Television, the comedy pilot—starring Portia de Rossi and Malin Akerman revolves around Jude, a brilliant and successful woman (de Rossi) who begrudgingly goes to work for Candy, her less-brainy but more popular sister — a former beauty queen, weather girl and now big-city mayor (Akerman).

Beatriz, who guest starred on TNT’s The Closer, will play Natalee, Candy’s whip smart yet ditsy hairdresser who helped get the dim bulb elected mayor. She’s described as a cross between Octavia Spencer from The Help and Jennifer Coolidge from Legally Blonde.

Beatriz joins a cast that also includes David Arquette and Jean Smart.

Donald Todd will pen the project and executive produce alongside Lauren Corrao and de Rossi’s wife, DeGeneres.

Cruz: Best Dressed at This Year’s Oscars


It may be called “Hollywood’s biggest night” as the entertainment industry’s luminaries gather to recognize the year’s best of the best.

But the Academy Awards could also be called “Hollywood’s biggest night of fashion,” with the world’s most stunning starlets strutting their way down the pre-Oscars red carpet in oh-so-haute gowns. And, Sunday’s Academy Awards proved no exception!

Here’s a look at the best dressed Latinas who pulled out all the stops at the 84th Annual Academy Awards to shine brightest:

Penelope Cruz at the Oscars

Penelope Cruz
There’s no denying Penelope Cruz is one of Hollywood’s brightest stars, especially after seeing her bring some “Old Hollywood” glamour back to this year’s red carpet. The 37-year-old Spanish actress, who won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar in 2008 for her work in Vicky Cristina Barcelona, dazzled in a custom, lilac Armani Prive organza gown with a fitted bodice. Cruz, a presenter at Sunday’s awards show, accessorized her off-the-shoulder stunner with Chopard jewels and a pinned undo.

Jennifer Lopez at the Oscars

Jennifer Lopez
She’s known for taking risks on the red carpet, and Jennifer Lopez’s red carpet look at this year’s Academy Awards was no exception. The 42-year-old Puerto Rican singer, actress and American Idol judge looked absolutely radiant in a custom Zuhair Murad couture gown with a plunging neckline and cut-out sleeves. Lopez wore her hair in an oversized bun and carried a Salvatore Ferragamo silver mirrored clutch. “I’ve always loved fashion since I was a little girl,” the awards show presenter told Tim Gunn. “I enjoy playing dress up.” And, during tonight’s show, she was dressed to the nines and lookin’ fine!

Cameron Diaz at the Oscars

Cameron Diaz
Cameron Diaz hit this year’s Academy Awards in a strapless, cream-colored Gucci gown that showed off her taut  figure. The 39-year-old part-Cuban actress accessorized with Tiffany & Co. jewels worth nearly $1 million and Salvatore Ferragamo shoes. Diaz, who served as a presenter during this year’s Oscars telecast, admitted the dresses train was a little heavy, but told Tim Gunn that it’s so masterfully crafted. “These dresses are works of artisans, and the way that they fit and the way they hold onto [your] body, you know who you’re dealing with when you put it on your body,” Diaz added.

Berenice Bejo at the Oscars

Bérénice Bejo
She may have lost to The Help’s Octavia Spencer in the Best Supporting Actress category, but Bérénice Bejo proved to be one of the night’s biggest winners on the red carpet. The 35-year-old Argentine actress and The Artist scene-stealer—who won the Best Actress trophy at France’s version of the Oscars on Friday—hit the red carpet in a beaded, mint green Elie Saab couture gown. Bejo’s copper locks and braided up do complemented the look, especially when juxtaposed with her dramatic emerald-and-diamond drop earrings.

Bichir Receives First-Ever Oscar Nomination…

Demián Bichir is following in the footsteps of legendary actor Anthony Quinn

The 48-year-old former telenovela star has become only the second Mexican actor to receive a lead actor Academy Award nomination; nearly 50 years after Quinn won an Oscar for his role in Zorba the Greek.

Demian Bichir

Bichir received the nod for his starring role in A Better Life where he played Carlos Galindo, an illegal immigrant gardener living in East Los Angeles. Struggling to remain employed but undetected by immigration authorities, Galindo attempts to provide a better life for his American-born son.

“I’m overwhelmed for having my name among those incredible actors,” Bichir tells Us Weekly in a statement. “This could have never happened if Chris Weitz had not been the head of this film. He is my brother and I thank him deeply.”

Bichir’s performance—which led to a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination and Independent Spirit Awards nod, has simmered on Hollywood’s back burner since awards season began.

Demian Bichir A Better Life Spirit Award Nomination

“You know, when you encounter a character like this and a project like this, the first reaction is how lucky I am,” said Bichir in a recent interview with USA Today. “Because this is my Hamlet. This is my King Lear… It’s a bigger-than-life character that any actor would fight for it, would die to do it.”

Bichir will face-off against George Clooney (The Descendants), Jean Dujardin (The Artist), Gary Oldman (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) and
Brad Pitt (Moneyball).

Berenice Bejo The Artist

Meanwhile, Bérénice Bejo is also a first-time Oscar nominee. The 35-year-old Argentine star—who was the best-dressed Latina at this year’s Golden Globes—received a Best Supporting Actress nod for her star-making role in The Artist.

Bejo is up against Jessica Chastain (The Help), Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids), Janet McTeer (Albert Nobbs) and
 Octavia Spencer (The Help). 

Here’s a look at the other Latinos nominated for an Academy Award this year:

Music (Original Score):
Alberto Iglesias,
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy 

Music (Original Song):
Sergio Mendes, Carlinhos Brown & Siedah Garrett, “Real in Rio” from Rio

Martin Scorsese’s Hugo was this year’s most nominated film with 11 nods, followed by Michel HazanaviciusThe Artist, with 10.

The 84th Academy Awards will be televised on ABC on Sunday, Feb. 26.


Zoë Saldaña Receives NAACP Image Award Nod

Zoë Saldaña has received an NAACP Image Award nod for playing a stone-cold assassin in Colombiana.

The 33-year-old half-Dominican/half-Puerto Rican American actress, currently at work on the latest Star Trek film, will face off against Pariah’s Adepero Oduye, The Help’s Emma Stone, Jumping the Broom’s Paula Patton and The Help’s Viola Davis at the 43rd Annual NAACP Image Awards.

Zoe Saldana

Presented by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People to honor outstanding people of color in film, television, music and literature. Members of the NAACP vote for their favorites in the 35 categories that make up the Image Awards.

The Help led the pack with eight nominations, including nods for Best Picture, writing and directing, as well as dominating the Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress categories.

But Saldaña isn’t the only Hispanic celebrity receiving an Image Award nod. Here’s a look at the other Latino/a stars in the running:

Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture
Laz AlonsoJumping the Broom

Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series
Tatyana AliLove That Girl!

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Sofia Vergara Modern Family

Outstanding Actor in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special
Esai Morales – We Have Your Husband 

Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special
Rosario Dawson – Five

Outstanding Actress in a Daytime Drama Series
Tatyana Ali – The Young and the Restless

Outstanding Male Artist
Bruno Mars

The Image Awards will be presented on February 17 on NBC.

For the complete list of nominees visit the Awards’ official site.

Bejo: The Best Dressed Latina at This Year’s Golden Globes

Much like the carpet at the 69th Annual Golden Globe Awards, the biggest starlets in television and film were awash in gorgeous jewel tones, from ruby to emerald and amethyst. But the night’s hautest hue appeared to be sapphire.

Even though a Latina didn’t take claim one of the coveted Golden Globes this year, several of them illuminated the red carpet with their oh-so-stylish sheaths.

Here’s a look at this year’s best-dressed Latinas at the Globes:

Bérénice Bejo

She may have lost the Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture award to The Help’s Octavia Spencer, but Bérénice Bejo was the night’s brightest star on the red carpet. The 35-year-old Argentine star of The Artist arrived at the Golden Globes in an Emilio Pucci sapphire silk organza strapless gown. Bejo—who did pick up a Best actress statue at France’s version of the Golden Globes over the weekend—  accessorized her gorgeous gown with a vintage navy blue Daniel Swarovski clutch and Chopard jewelry.

Sofia Vergara

Golden Globe-nominee Sofia Vergara is no stranger to stealing the spotlight on the red carpet; she was one of the best dressed stars at last year’s Emmy Awards. The 39-year-old Colombian Modern Family star, who did two-a-days at the gym for the first time in her life to fit into her super-tight gown, flaunted her figure in a custom Vera Wang peacock strapless mermaid gown. Vergara paired the stunning sapphire gown, which mimicked ocean waves, with Harry Winston jewels.

Jessica Alba

Jessica Alba, who partnered with Channing Tatum to present an award at this year’s Globes, dazzled on the red carpet in a pale-lavender Gucci strapless gown with embroidered fish-like scales and a simple train. Alba’s daughter Honor likened it to a mermaid, “because it looks like a mermaid tail to her.” The 30-year-old half-Mexican American actress paired the eye-catching dress with Giuseppe Zanotti shoes, Bulgari jewels, and a Roger Vivier bag.

Lea Michele

Lea Michele, who rocked the People’s Choice Awards just a few days ago, proved her mettle…or should we say metal…once again as a red carpet superstar. The 25-year-old part-Spanish Glee star donned an antique embroidered illusion dress from Marchesa. She capped off her sparkly dress with Jimmy Choo shoes and Lorraine Schwarz jewels.

Salma Hayek

Salma Hayek, who served as a presenter at this year’s awards show, isn’t afraid to take risks on the red carpet. The 45-year-old Mexican Puss in Boots actress proved that again in an architectural metallic gold and black Gucci dress with plenty of razzle-dazzle.

Nicole Richie

Nicole Richie, who has transformed herself into a true fashion icon, look glam and gorgeous in a stunning silver Julien Macdonald dress. The 30-year-old part-Mexican actress paired her exquisite dress with Jimmy Choo shoes. And, she finished her look with her very own House of Harlow bag.