Gloria Estefan Among Artists Sharing Personal Stories & Life Lessons on YouTube’s Documentary Series “The Thread”

Gloria Estefan is opening up about her life…

The 66-year-old Cuban singer, actress and businesswoman is among some of the most exceptional Americans in the arts, media, religion and politics sharing their personal stories and life lessons in The Thread, a new documentary series coming to YouTube in March.

Gloria EstefanAs part of the 16-episode series, Estefan sat down for a probing conversation with producers from Life Stories, a nonprofit media organization that makes and distributes “films about people whose lives inspire meaningful change.”

Each conversation is recorded at the highest quality by Emmy-winning filmmakers, notes a release, “and is accompanied by an educator guide so that the documentary series can be used in secondary classrooms and informal educational settings.”

The Thread is an exploration of what it means to live a purpose-driven life,” noted George Kunhardt, executive director of Life Stories. “The voices we amplify in this series spark curiosity, ignite inspiration, and connect us to the multi-faceted people who have helped shape our society. Our mission as filmmakers is to shine a spotlight on the stories of moral leaders to help people find passion and purpose in their own lives.”

The “Get On Your Feet” singer’s episode, entitled Gloria Estefan: Singing Through Struggles, will go live on March 4.

Martin Sheen, who is of half-Spanish descent, will also appear on the series. The West Wing actor’s episode, entitled Martin Sheen: Lights, Camera, Activism, will go live on March 25.

Others Americans to be figured include The Rev. Dr. Jacqueline Lewis, New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast, Katie Couric, actor Jason Alexander and Sen. Mitt Romney.

The episodes will roll out once a week from March 4-June 17 on the Life Stories YouTube channel and will be released as a podcast on major platforms.

Life Stories is a new division of the Kunhardt Film Foundation, “an organization that has introduced a generation of viewers to artists, cultural, political, and civil rights leaders,” according to a release. The Kunhardts – father Peter and his sons Teddy and George – have earned a combined eight Emmy Awards, two Peabody Awards, a duPont-Columbia Award, an IDA Documentary Award, and two NAACP Image Awards.

“We are bringing our longstanding dedication to quality with increased focus on the power of individual narrative,” said Teddy Kunhardt, EP of The Thread. “We believe that life stories, thoughtfully told, have the power to create change.”

This is the episode guide for season 1 of the series:

March 4 Gloria Estefan: Singing Through Struggles
March 11 Jason Reynolds: The Power of Narrative
March 18 Tova Friedman: Surviving Auschwitz
March 25 Martin Sheen: Lights, Camera, Activism
April 1 Roz Chast: Drawing From Life
April 8 Kurt “Big Boy” Alexander: A Hip Hop Odyssey
April 15 Rev. Dr. Jacqueline Lewis: Finding Wisdom in Pain
April 22 Mitt Romney: Family Ties
April 29 Cecile Richards: Championing Choice
May 6 Reginald Dwayne Betts: A Voice for the Incarcerated
May 13 Tony Hawk: Skateboarding’s Living Legend
May 20 Darren Walker: Hope and Courage in Action
May 27 Katie Couric: From Tragedies to Triumphs
June 3 Jason Alexander: The Power of Laughter
June 10 Betty Rollin: First You Cry
June 17 Father Greg Boyle: Welcoming the Unwelcome

Lin-Manuel Miranda & His Hamilton Cast Mates to Reunite for Joe Biden Presidential Campaign Fundraiser

Lin-Manuel Miranda is doing his bidding for Biden…

The 40-year-old Puerto Rican Tony Award-winning composer, lyricist, actor, singer/rapper, producer and playwright and the original cast of his hit musical Hamilton will reunite this week for a fundraiser for Joe Biden’s presidential campaign, the latest pop culture themed virtual event.

Lin-Manuel Miranda's final Hamilton curtain call

The campaign announced that among those participating will be Miranda, Daveed Diggs, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Jonathan Groff, Christopher Jackson, Javier Muñoz, Leslie Odom, Jr., Okieriete Onaodowa and Phillipa Soo. Director Thomas Kail will moderate a Q&A, and it will be followed by a special performance.

The event will take place at 9:00 pm ET on Friday, October 16 with no ticket amount. Proceeds will go to the Biden Victory Fund.

The cast of Hamilton also performed in 2016 for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

Democrats have been drawing on cast reunions as a way to raise small-dollar contributions. The Wisconsin Democratic Party has hosted recent virtual reunions of the cast of The Princess Bride and Veep.

HBO Max is debuting a West Wing reunion on October 15 to benefit When We All Vote, the get-out-the-vote effort led by Michelle Obama.

Sheen Cast in Netflix’s Upcoming Comedy Series “Grace and Frankie”

Martin Sheen is returning to series television…

The 73-year-old half-Spanish American actor and West Wing alum has joined the cast of Netflix‘s upcoming comedy series Grace and Frankie, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Martin Sheen

Grace and Frankie stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin as the titular characters, who are nemeses until they form an unlikely bond after their husbands announce that they’re in love with each other and plan to get married.

Sheen will portray Robert, the husband of Fonda’s character Grace, who eventually leaves her for another man.

The role of Tomlin’s husband has not been cast.

The single-camera comedy, which is created by Howard J. Morris and Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman, is set to debut in 2015.

Sheen to Serve as a Guest Analyst on ESPN’s “Baseball Tonight”

Charlie Sheen is ready to play ball

The 48-year-old part-Spanish actor will serve as a guest analyst on ESPN’s Baseball Tonight when the show broadcasts live from the Cincinnati RedsSt. Louis Cardinals game on Sunday night.

Charlie Sheen

Sheen will be in the broadcast booth for the Sunday Night Countdown show airing on ESPN at 7:00 pm ET from Cincinnati’s Great American Ballpark.

Sheen is an avid baseball fan and portrayed a player in Major League (plus the sequel) and Eight Men Out.

Even though he grew up in California — where he was a star pitcher and shortstop for the Santa Monica High School baseball team — Sheen has been a lifelong Reds fan because his West Wing star father, Martin Sheen, is from Dayton, Ohio.

It has been a long time since Sheen graduated from high school, but he still roots for his team and posted a photo of the SaMo High Vikings mascot on Twitter earlier this month with a shout-out to the coach, Tony Todd. He reportedly has donated tens of thousands of dollars to the school’s baseball program since playing there in the 1980s, including buying a new pitching machine in January.

Sheen convincingly played an ex-con reliever for the Cleveland Indians in both Major League films, and portrayed Chicago’s Happy Felsch in Eight Man Out, the biopic about the Black Sox scandal of 1919. Even his wedding to Denise Richards in 2002 was celebrated with a gospel rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ball Park” during the ceremony, and one of the wedding gifts was an authentic Gold Glove trophy.

The former Two and a Half Men star, who later went on to launch his comedy series Anger Managementon FX, follows in the footsteps of Jon Hamm, who was a guest analyst on Baseball Tonight during the Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates game May 11, after the ESPN crew joined him on the red carpet for the Hollywood premiere of Million Dollar Arm.

Like Hamm, Sheen will join Reds legend and Hall of Famer Barry Larkin and Baseball Tonight host Karl Ravech on the set.

Viewers can expect to see more special broadcast events to celebrate the 25th season of ESPN’s Baseball Tonight and Sunday Night Baseball, as the network is planning to get other famous fans involved.

Morales Lands Presidential Role on HBO’s Pilot “The Brink”

Esai Morales’ next project will have him on the brink of political greatness…

The 51-year-old Puerto Rican actor has landed a co-starring a role in the HBO pilot The Brink.

Esai Morales

Directed by Jay Roach from a script by Roberto Benabib and Kim Benabib, The Brink is an epic dark comedy focusing on a geopolitical crisis and its effect on three disparate and desperate men: U.S. Secretary of State Walter Hollander (Tim Robbins); Alex Coppins (Jack Black), a lowly Foreign Service officer; and Zeke Callahan (Pablo Schreiber), an ace Navy fighter pilot.

Morales will portray Julian Navarro, the President of the United States.

While the U.S. is yet to elect a Hispanic president, that has been a popular trend on television that has included Jimmy Smits’ Matt Santos on The West Wing and Blair Underwood’s Elias Martinez on The Event.

Morales, who most recently co-starred on the second season of Starz’s Magic City, recently wrapped a supporting role in George Lopez’s feature La Vida Robot and has a recurring role on CBSCriminal Minds.

Sheen to Voice Character in Animated Film “Wrinkles”

Martin Sheen is embracing his arrugas

The 72-year-old half-Spanish American Actor and former West Wing star, is lending his voice to Wrinkles, the English-language version of the Spanish animated film, which was directed by Ignacio Ferreras and based on Paco Roca’s award-winning graphic novel.

Martin Sheen

Dubbed by GKIDS, the film will be in all ingles, and available in all English-language foreign territories.

Wrinkles, which tackles a universal subject matter with humor and acerbic wit, centers on former bank manager Emilio, who is being dispatched to a retirement home by his family. His new roommate is a wily, wheeler-dealer named Miguel, who cheerfully swindles small amounts of cash from the more befuddled residents but is also full of handy insider tips that are crucial to survival.

Along with Sheen, the English voice cast includes George Coe and Matthew Modine,

Wrinkles is considered an animated movie for adult audiences. The film has garnered wide critical acclaim, multiple festival awards, and earned two Goya Awards in its home country of Spain.

The English-dubbed version of Wrinkles is set for release in early 2014.

Sheen to Star in the Near-Future Mystery Film “Trash”

Martin Sheen has landed a trashy new project…

The 72-year-old half-Spanish actor and former West Wing star, who was born Ramón Antonio Gerardo Estévez, has been cast opposite Side Effects’ actress Rooney Mara in the mystery film Trash.

Martin Sheen

Based on Andy Mulligan‘s young adult novel, the film centers on three homeless boys living in an intentionally ambiguous “third world” country in the near future who discover something in a trash heap worth protecting.

Filming is expected to begin in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil next month.

Mara will portray an NGO worker and Sheen is set to play Father Julliard. Rickson Teves, Eduardo Luis and Gabriel Weinstein will make their film debuts as the three boys.

The HoursStephen Daldry is set to direct the project, which was adapted for the screen by Richard Curtis.

Sheen Using His Birth Name in “Machete Kills” Credits

Charlie Sheen is embracing his Latino roots…

The 47-year-old part-Spanish actor is using his real name in the credits for Robert Rodriguez’ upcoming film Machete Kills.

Charlie Sheen

Sheen, born Carlos Irwin Estévez to actor Martin Sheen, stars as the President of the United States in the sequel to Rodriguez’s cult classic Machete.

His brother Emilio Estevez decided to keep the family name and dad Martin Sheen, born Ramón Antonio Gerardo Estevez, regrets changing his name, which he did to get more acting gigs.

“I thought, I got enough problems trying to get an acting job, so I invented Martin Sheen,” said the West Wing star during a 2003 appearance on Inside the Actors Studio.

“It’s still Estevez officially. I never changed it officially. I never will. It’s on my driver’s license and passport and everything. I started using Sheen, I thought I’d give it a try, and before I knew it, I started making a living with it and then it was too late. In fact, one of my great regrets is that I didn’t keep my name as it was given to me. I knew it bothered my dad.”

In the film, Trejo returns as ex-Federal agent Machete, who is recruited by the President of the United States (Sheen) for a mission which would be impossible for any mortal man – he must take down a madman revolutionary and an eccentric billionaire arms dealer (Mel Gibson) who has hatched a plan to spread war across the planet.

Machete Kills also stars Sofia Vergara, Demián Bichir, Jessica Alba, Antonio Banderas, Vanessa Hudgens and Lady Gaga.

Machete Kills is scheduled for release in the U.S. on September 13, 2013.

Smits Earns Critics’ Choice Television Award Nomination for His “Sons of Anarchy” Role

It’s no wonder Jimmy Smits is returning for the next season of Sons of Anarchy… His role as Neron “Nero” Padilla has earned some serious praise.

The 57-year-old Puerto Rican actor has earned a Critics’ Choice Television Award nomination in the Best Guest Performer in a Drama Series category for his performance on FX’s biker drama.

Jimmy Smits on Sons of Anarchy

Smits starred in 12 of Sons of Anarchy’s 13 episodes last season. And, he’s set to appear in all episodes next season.

It’s the first Critics’ Choice Television Award nomination for the former West Wing star and Golden Globe and Emmy-winning actor.

Meanwhile, Louis C.K. continues to earn critical love…

The 45-year-old Mexican American actor/comedian has been nominated in the Best Actor in a Comedy Series category for his role on FX’s Louie, a show he created.

In addition, his series in nominated for Best Comedy Series. The show is up against The Big Band Theory, The Middle, New Girl, Parks and Recreation and Veep.

The awards will be handed out June 10 at the Beverly Hilton.

Here’s a complete look at the list of nominees.

• The Big Bang Theory – CBS
• Louie – FX
• The Middle – ABC
• New Girl – FOX
• Parks and Recreation – NBC
• Veep – HBO

• Don Cheadle (House of Lies) – Showtime
Louis C.K. (Louie) – FX
• Jake Johnson (New Girl) – FOX
• Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
• Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
• Jeremy Sisto (Suburgatory) – ABC

• Laura Dern (Enlightened) – HBO
• Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) – FOX
• Lena Dunham (Girls) – HBO
• Sutton Foster (Bunheads) – ABC Family
• Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep) – HBO
• Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation) – NBC

• Max Greenfield (New Girl) – FOX
• Simon Helberg (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
• Alex Karpovsky (Girls) – HBO
• Adam Pally (Happy Endings) – ABC
• Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
• Danny Pudi (Community) – NBC

• Carly Chaikin (Suburgatory) – ABC
• Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
• Sarah Hyland (Modern Family) – ABC
• Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
• Eden Sher (The Middle) – ABC
• Casey Wilson (Happy Endings) – ABC

• Melissa Leo (Louie) – FX
• David Lynch (Louie) – FX
• Bob Newhart (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
• Patton Oswalt (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
• Molly Shannon (Enlightened) – HBO
• Patrick Wilson (Girls) – HBO

• The Americans – FX
• Breaking Bad – AMC
• Downton Abbey – PBS
• Game of Thrones – HBO
• The Good Wife – CBS
• Homeland – Showtime

• Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) – AMC
• Damian Lewis (Homeland) – Showtime
• Andrew Lincoln (The Walking Dead) – AMC
• Timothy Olyphant (Justified) – FX
• Matthew Rhys (The Americans) – FX
• Kevin Spacey (House of Cards) – Netflix

• Claire Danes (Homeland) – Showtime
• Vera Farmiga (Bates Motel) – A&E
• Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife) – CBS
• Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black) – BBC America
• Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) – AMC
• Keri Russell (The Americans) – FX

• Jonathan Banks (Breaking Bad) – AMC
• Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Game of Thrones) – HBO
• Michael Cudlitz (Southland) – TNT
• Noah Emmerich (The Americans) – FX
• Walton Goggins (Justified) – FX
• Corey Stoll (House of Cards) – Netflix

• Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter) – Showtime
• Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) – HBO
• Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) – AMC
• Regina King (Southland) – TNT
• Monica Potter (Parenthood) – NBC
• Abigail Spencer (Rectify) – Sundance

• Jim Beaver (Justified) – FX
• Jane Fonda (The Newsroom) – HBO
• Martha Plimpton (The Good Wife) – CBS
• Carrie Preston (The Good Wife) – CBS
• Diana Rigg (Game of Thrones) – HBO
Jimmy Smits (Sons of Anarchy) – FX

• American Horror Story: Asylum – FX
• Behind the Candelabra – HBO
• The Crimson Petal and the White – Encore
• The Hour – BBC America
• Political Animals – USA
• Top of the Lake – Sundance

• Benedict Cumberbatch (Parade’s End) – HBO
• Matt Damon (Behind the Candelabra) – HBO
• Michael Douglas (Behind the Candelabra) – HBO
• Toby Jones (The Girl) – HBO
• Al Pacino (Phil Spector) – HBO
• Dominic West (The Hour) – BBC America

• Angela Bassett (Betty & Coretta) – Lifetime
• Romola Garai (The Hour) – BBC America
• Rebecca Hall (Parade’s End) – HBO
• Jessica Lange (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
• Elisabeth Moss (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
• Sigourney Weaver (Political Animals) – USA

• James Cromwell (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
• Peter Mullan (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
• Zachary Quinto (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
• Sebastian Stan (Political Animals) – USA
• David Wenham (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
• Thomas M. Wright (Top of the Lake) – Sundance

• Ellen Burstyn (Political Animals) – USA
• Sienna Miller (The Girl) – HBO
• Sarah Paulson (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
• Lily Rabe (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
• Imelda Staunton (The Girl) – HBO
• Alfre Woodard (Steel Magnolias) – Lifetime

• Duck Dynasty – A&E
• The Moment – USA
• Pawn Stars – History Channel
• Push Girls – Sundance
• Small Town Security – AMC
• Wild Things with Dominic Monaghan – BBC America

• Chopped – Food Network
• Face Off – Syfy
• Shark Tank – ABC
• So You Think You Can Dance – FOX
• Survivor – CBS
• The Voice –

• Tom Bergeron (Dancing With the Stars) – ABC
• Cat Deeley (So You Think You Can Dance) – FOX
• Gordon Ramsay (Hell’s Kitchen/Masterchef) – FOX
• RuPaul (RuPaul’s Drag Race) – Logo
• Ryan Seacrest (American Idol) – FOX
• Kurt Warner (The Moment) – USA

• Conan – TBS
• The Daily Show with Jon Stewart – Comedy Central
• The Ellen DeGeneres Show – Warner Brothers Television Distribution
• Jimmy Kimmel Live! – ABC
• Late Night with Jimmy Fallon – NBC
• Marie – Hallmark Channel

• Adventure Time – Cartoon Network
• Archer – FX
• Phineas and Ferb – Disney Channel
• Regular Show – Cartoon Network
• The Simpsons – FOX
• Star Wars: The Clone Wars – Cartoon Network

Rodriguez Cast in Fox’s “Wild Blue” Drama Pilot

Gina Rodriguez is headed into the wild blue (yonder)

The Puerto Rican actress has been cast as the female lead in Fox’s Navy drama pilot Wild Blue, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Gina Rodriguez

The project, which has been described as a mix between ERThe West Wing and Top Gun, centers on the men and women working aboard a U.S. aircraft carrier. Equipped with a 500-foot landing strip, a nuclear reactor and 6,000 military personnel on board, the drama takes a closer look at stressful lives of the Navy’s elite.

Rodriguez, who was recently cast in the film Marching Banda, will portray Pilar “Maytag” Robles, an overachiever seemingly born to be a Naval open aviator. She’s described as athletic and graceful but by no means a pushover who is smart, driven and unafraid to fight for what she believes is right and fair.

Rodriguez, who starred opposite the late Jenni Rivera in Filly Brown, has previously appeared in Army Wives, Happy Endings and The Mentalist.

She joins a cast that includes Battle: Los Angeles Will Rotthaar, The Carrie DiariesJosh SalatinAlano Miller and Damages’ Mykelti Williamson.