This year’s Oscars ceremony may not have ended with what would have been an historic win for Roma as Best Picture, but the Alfonso Cuarón film did manage to break a couple of records with its three wins.
Scoring statues for Best Cinematography, Best Foreign Language Film and Best Director, the black-and-white period film spoken in Spanish and Mixtec was part of a rather multicultural telecast. There were various firsts, with Black Panther’s costume and production designers becoming the first black women to win in their category; female filmmakers dominating the Shorts races; and winners like Rami Makek (Best Actor for Bohemian Rhapsody) speaking powerfully about being the child of immigrants in this country.
Moreover, in between appearances and speeches by Diego Luna, Alfonso Cuarón, Guillermo de Toro and Javier Bardem, there was plenty of Spanish to be heard throughout the telecast. So much so that by the time Luna joined chef José Andrés on stage to present a clip from Roma, he went off-script in Spanish (“Buenas noches,” he quipped, “Ya se puede hablar Español en los Oscares!”) before being nudged back into their scripted banter.
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Rosario Dawson is more than just another famous face in Hollywood. In addition to her high-profile film career, she’s a philanthropist, activist, and entrepreneur. Not to mention producer, singer and comic book writer!
First and foremost, Dawson is fiercely passionate about her philanthropy and her desire to serve her community. Her early life wasn’t easy. Her family lived in a squatter’s apartment in New York’s East Village, where she grew up seeing poverty, sickness, and suffering all around her. “Growing up here in New York, with a mom who was a teenager when she had me, I had family and friends who were either trans and/or had HIV or AIDS and/or had drug problems or housing issues or issues with access to education,” Dawson said in an interview with the lifestyle website mindbodygreen. “I saw the whole maelstrom of privilege and access.”
Growing up in a liberal-minded family, she was raised to understand the value of social change at a young age. “My mother worked for a women’s shelter when I was young,” she said. “To see strangers helping other strangers, just showing up and giving, was so inspiring to me.” It’s not hard to see how her experiences have inspired her to make a change for others. She serves as a board member of V-day, a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls. She supports charities like the ONE Campaign, Amnesty International, Oxfam, International Rescue, and Lower East Side Girls Club, and the Environmental Media Association, among many others. She is also active in such programs as Conservation International, Doctors Without Borders, National Geographic Society, The Nature Conservancy and Save The Children.
In 2013, Dawson partnered with her longtime friend Abrima Erwiah to found Studio 189, a fashion and media brand based in Ghana that produces African and African-inspired clothing and lifestyle content. In an interview with Google, when asked about their decision to launch in Ghana, Dawson and Erwiah had this to say: “We were impressed by the culture of creativity, craft, and innovation and the rich history present in Ghana. We felt it was a wonderful place to develop social infrastructure, to add value to natural resources, to create opportunities for work and support capacity building. At the same time, we wanted to support the growth of a local market of consumers as well and help create a space for more people to enter conversations and be included in the growth of the global fashion industry.” For these two partners, Studio 189 is not just a business, but also a social enterprise. Through their brand, they have been able to make changes in the community through educational workshops, counseling, and employment.
Politically active for much of her life, Dawson says, “The American future is here, and there’s great news: the future votes.” She co-founded the pioneering civic media nonprofit organization, Voto Latino, in an effort to boost Latino participation in the political process. Established in 2004, Voto Latino’s mission is to provide culturally relevant programs that engage, educate, and empower Latinos to be agents of change. It also seeks to transform America by recognizing Latinos’ innate leadership. Whenever we do voter registration, we ask, ‘Why haven’t you voted before?’ The response is often, ‘No one’s asked us.’ It’s not about telling people what to do—it’s about sharing what they can do.
“Voting is the umbrella to everything else that I’m doing,” says Rosario. “Women’s issues, health and disease, poverty, housing—these all fall under that voting power.” In recognition for her efforts, she was awarded the President’s Volunteer Service Award in 2017.
Also a health advocate, Dawson, a self-proclaimed oat enthusiast, recently partnered with Quaker Oats to create a three-part video series that encourages people to incorporate healthier practices into their everyday lives. “I’ve been eating Quaker oatmeal since I was a young child, ever since my aunt taught me how to make it from scratch, so I’m excited to team up with them to help spread the word about the benefits of oats,” Dawson said. “As an advocate for health and wellness, I never want to short-term my health—I think it’s so important to have long-term plans. And what’s great is that you don’t have to start big, because even small steps can make a difference.”
Dawson’s first step on her journey to fame happened by accident when she was just 15 years old. Sitting on the front porch step of her apartment building, she was spotted by photographers Larry Clark and Harmony Korine. Aspiring screenwriter Korine thought Dawson would be perfect to cast in the 1995 film, Kids, where she played Ruby, a sexually active adolescent. From there, Dawson went on to star in more films, like Rent, He Got Game, Men in Black II, Seven Pounds, Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, and Sin City, among many others. In the music industry, she had a speaking part in the re-release of Prince’s 1980s hit, “1999,” renamed “1999: The New Master.” She also appeared in the music video for Out of Control by The Chemical Brothers and was featured on the Outkast track, She Lives in My Lap.
Currently, Dawson is set to voice the iconic heroine Diana Prince in the DC animated original film, Wonder Woman: Bloodlines, a character she’s voiced since 2015’s Justice League: The Throne of Atlantis. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the actress has also been cast in Sony Pictures’ next installment of the post-apocalyptic comedy, Zombieland 2. She will be working alongside original cast members including Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone, Jesse Eisenberg, and Abigail Breslin, as well as newcomers Zoey Deutch and Avan Jogia. In addition to these roles, Dawson will both produce and star in the upcoming drama series Briarpatch from Sam Esmail, the creator of Mr. Robot. Based on the Ross Thomas novel, the first season of the series will be produced by Universal Cable Productions and Paramount Television. In this drama, Dawson will be playing a Washington, D.C.-based investigator who returns to her hometown in Texas to help search for her sister’s murderer.
Last year, she announced her guest collaboration on La Borinqueña, an original character and patriotic symbol presented in a classic superhero story created and written by graphic novelist Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez. Her powers are drawn from history and mysticism found on the island of Puerto Rico. Dawson and her writing partner David Atchison joined Dawson’s uncle, comic book artist Gustavo Vazquez on the project.
Although she has a full workload, she still finds time to make an impact outside the world of Hollywood. From being a political activist to running a sustainable fashion line, Rosario Dawson is continuously showing her passion and commitment to the causes she advocates for.
Using her platform to make a difference, Dawson’s activism has allowed her to not only witness change but also effect it. “I’m really moved by everything I’ve seen achieved over the years, and there’s so much that’s being worked toward now with many more people,” Dawson says in an interview with InStyle. “I’m inspired to just do whatever I feel called to do and to be of service and to be of use… There are so many different ways that we can serve, and I want to figure out as many ways as I can to fit into this lifetime.”
“The song is loosely based upon me being half Puerto Rican, half Hispanic, and my dad being Irish Caucasian,” Dorough, 45, tells PEOPLE exclusively about the single.
Fun fact: Dorough’s 10-year-old son James, and his mother, Paula Flores Dorough, star in the video for “No Hablo Español”
“Kids would see me and talk to me in Spanish, and I would be like, ‘No hablo español.’” And they’d be like, ‘What?’ And it’s almost kind of like that look of, and I hate to say it’s a disgrace, but like, ‘You’re not proud of it? You’re not carrying on tradition.’ And it was never that — I was just a little kid.”
The album, which follows the path of a young Howie D. overcoming his insecurities to discover his true self, has been in the works for the past five years and is something Dorough is “very proud of.”
“It’s definitely not your normal kids record,” he says. “This is more of a twist on a kids record. The goal is to teach people that no matter what they’re going through, they can overcome any obstacle in front of them. I want people who listen to the music not to worry, everything that happens is meant to teach you how to be the person you were meant to be.”
Howie Dorough’s Which One Am I?
“I went through a lot of common issues that a lot of kids go through nowadays, including worrying and being shy, feeling small, being in somebody’s shadow, monsters in your head, bad dreams,” he adds. “I was definitely always trying to find my place and where I am and how I fit in with people. I wasn’t your tall jock, I was more of your shorter guys. I was more into music and musicals and dancing. Eventually I did find my place, and I’m very proud that I stuck to my grounds of knowing that I was a true entertainer.”
Now, a father of two (he’s also doting dad to Holden, 6) with wife, Leigh, Dorough said he wanted to create an album that was entertaining for both parents and their kids.
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Rita Moreno’s alphabet of awards is gaining another letter. The Peabody Awards organization recently announced it will honor the Puerto Rican actress, singer and dancer with the career achievement award.
That means Moreno, 87, will become the third person to achieve PEGOT status by winning a Peabody, Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony award. Film director Mike Nichols and entertainer Barbra Streisand are the other two PEGOT winners.
Moreno, who gained widespread fame in the film “West Side Story,” will be honored at the Peabody Awards annual gala in New York City on May 18.
“Rita Moreno is a unique talent who has not only broken barriers, but whose career continues to thrive six-plus decades after her acting debut,” Jeffrey P. Jones, executive director of Peabody Awards. “We are delighted to celebrate her many contributions to entertainment and media, as well as her passion for children’s programming and important social issues.”
Most recently, Moreno starred in three seasons of the popular Latino remake of Norman Lear’s classic sitcom, “One Day at a Time” on Netflix, which was nominated for a 2017 Peabody Award, She also signed on to be an executive producer in Steven Spielberg’s remake of West Side Story — a film in which she is also co-starring.
Moreno has also received other prestigious awards, such as The Kennedy Center Honor for her lifetime contributions to American culture and the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award.
She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush and the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama.
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Last time viewers left Dora from Nickelodeon’s educational animated television series “Dora the Explorer,” the adorable Latina girl was embarking on adventures with her monkey-friend Boots and her talking purple backpack.
Her biggest enemy was Swiper, a thieving fox who could be stopped only if viewers chanted “Swiper, no swiping!” three times.
In “Dora and the Lost City of Gold,” an upcoming live-action movie based on the series, things get a bit more complicated for the adventurer, according to the first film trailer that dropped this weekend.
Dora’s parents, portrayed by Michael Peña and Eva Longoria, think it’s time for Dora (Isabela Moner) to gain some stability in her life and decide to ship her off to live with her cousin Diego (Jeffrey Wahlberg). Meanwhile, they’ll be exploring an ancient city covered in gold, while Dora attempts to adjust to the structured high school life — a difficult task for a girl who grew up in the jungle.
Just as Dora is starting to get used to school, she and her new friends are kidnapped on a class field trip. In this action-movie reminiscent of the “Spy Kids” series, they must escape and track down Dora’s parents. Luckily for them, a family friend, Alejandro Gutierrez (Eugenio Derbez), arrives to lend them a hand.
The Sundance Film Festival is known for championing eclectic, independent work from artists around the world. Given their specific diversity-driven initiatives of years past, the 2019 edition of the festival was no exception, particularly with respect to cinema of interest to the Latino community. To the contrary, if you spent any time in the last few days in the snowy, mountainous air of Park City, you saw that this year showcases an embarrassment of riches when it comes to quality cinema from Latin America.
But, like all things involving Latino culture, Latino-related films at Sundance defy reductive simplifications. The picture that emerges is of a vibrant, diverse, and complex community of films and filmmakers. As told through the eyes of these artists, Latinos experience much of the same angsts as all other members of society. At the same time, we have a unique set of anxieties—and a beautiful, distinctive perspective—that makes Latin American cinema rewarding.
At a time when Latin music is experiencing unprecedented popularity and Sony leads the Latin category in U.S. market share, according to Nielsen Music, Nir Seroussi’s unexpected exit from Sony Music U.S. Latin — on Jan. 18, after four years as president and another four as managing director — came as a surprise to the Latin music community. Sony did not give a reason for the change, although both the label and Seroussi said they were parting on amicable terms.
But the announcement of Alex Gallardo, 43, as the division’s new president puts an artist favorite at the helm of the company and reinforces its commitment to investing in A&R.
“Sony Music Latin Iberia is the home of the artists and will always be. It’s my most important flag,” Afo Verde, Sony Music Entertainment’s chairman/CEO of Latin America, Spain and Portugal tells Billboard. “[Alex] is a consummate professional, musician, A&R, lover of music and all of its creative process from start to finish.”
Gallardo, who spent six years as senior vp A&R for all of the company’s regions and is known as firm and even, will oversee a staff of nearly 100. “What’s important is to understand artists, their needs and motivations, and to create the best environment possible for their creativity to flow,” he says. And his appointment was met with praise from many in the artist community. In a statement, Shakira called Gallardo a “professional” who is “in touch with the musical landscape and understands artists,” while Ricky Martin says, “His focus, knowledge and passion makes artists trust the process.”
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Yalitza Aparicio, who was just nominated for best actress in a leading role, gives a compelling and honest performance in her role as the family’s nanny, Cleo.
She is now the second Mexican best actress Oscar nominee.
“From the very first casting call to this morning, my Roma journey has been extraordinary,” she said in a statement to ABC News. “As a daughter of a domestic worker and an indigenous woman myself, I am proud this movie will help those of us who feel invisible be seen.”
“I am eternally grateful to the Academy for recognizing Roma,” she added.
The 25-year-old told Variety that she related to the character, “because of her background and how she managed to keep going despite adversity.”
However, Aparicio wasn’t on the path to becoming an actress before taking on this big role.
She’s actually a schoolteacher and only auditioned for the part after going to the audition with her sister, who is a singer and wanted to try for the role herself.
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“When I see that cute little girl with her pretty brown skin, it makes me melt,” said actress Gina Rodriguez, who is Carmen in the animated series.
Carmen Sandiego and Maria Vargas Aponte don’t have much in common. One is a fictional criminal mastermind who travels the world to avoid capture, while the other is a very real Texas-based video game blogger who makes an honest living as a computer engineer.
But when Netflix released the trailer for its new series “Carmen Sandiego,” which drops on Jan. 18 and features actress Gina Rodriguez as the voice of the main character, Vargas Aponte watched it “more than 15 times.”
Like other young adults who grew up in the 1980s and ’90s loving computers and gaming, Vargas Aponte relates to Carmen for many reasons, though one sticks out.
“Many Latina characters are secondary characters, but with Carmen Sandiego, we have this badass Latina character,” said Vargas Aponte, 28, who grew up playing a version of the “Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?” computer game.
Rodriguez, a native of Chicago who is of Puerto Rican descent, views her character as one that bridges cultures, something that resonates among the increasingly diverse younger generations.
“Carmen gets to travel to so many different places all over the world, and you see her empathy and desire to learn other people’s languages and cultures and religions, and she teaches that,” Rodriguez said. “The show fuses two things I love the most, which is art and education, and when I see that cute little girl with her pretty brown skin, it makes me melt. I almost want to cry when I think about it.”
Carmen Sandiego was introduced to the world in 1985 as a character in a computer game.
The character has since appeared in multiple iterations of the game, such as “Where in the U.S. Is Carmen Sandiego?”; “Where in Europe Is Carmen Sandiego?”; “Where in Time Is Carmen Sandiego?” and others.
The character also inspired a PBS game show where middle-schoolers won prizes for successfully answering questions about geography, as well as an animated television series, “Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?” Rita Moreno was nominated for three Daytime Emmys for her voice work as Carmen in the latter series. On Thursday, fans found out that Moreno will be voicing the character of Cookie Booker in a few episodes of the new series.
Duane Capizzi, one of the new show’s executive producers, told Variety that “Gina just wigged out at the prospect of having both Carmens in our show, past and present.”
Though Carmen Sandiego was the center of a sprawling franchise, she was perhaps best known to young people like Vargas Apointe from the educational computer games where she first appeared — and where there were hardly any young women of color.
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LATV Network, the original national, bicultural television network — which recently kicked off its second decade of programming — is excited to announce the launch of its groundbreaking weekly talk show “Glitterbomb”, premiering on the network this fall.
“Glitterbomb” is an explosive pop-culture talk show hosted by an entirely gay, Latino, Hollywood-insider panel featuring “Entertainment Weekly” senior editor Patrick Gomez, iHeartRadio personality Alexander Rodriguez, and actor Enrique Sapene.
Their queer Latino perspective — drizzled with wit, humor and first-hand insight into A-lister life — gives “Glitterbomb” a festive and unique flavor that everyone can enjoy. Combining their experience in acting, radio and journalism, there’s no subject too hot to handle and no scandal too spicy to dig into.
“The LGBTQ Latino community has, for too long, been underserved,” says Luca Bentivoglio, LATV’s COO and Head of Programming. “LATV is proud to foster an environment of inclusivity and we are thrilled to be a pioneer in LGBTQ Latino programming by airing the first-ever talk show with an entirely gay Latino cast. As part of our network’s mission to be as inclusive as possible, ‘Glitterbomb’ is a shining example of our network’s commitment to serving diverse and alternative audiences.”
Produced at LATV’s state-of-the-art HD studios in Los Angeles, “Glitterbomb” is an English-language show that features heated discussions about the latest in pop culture news and trends; provides an inside look at the latest celebrity hot spots and events; and welcomes some of the biggest names in entertainment.
“We could not be happier that LATV has given three gay Latinos a platform as big as ‘Glitterbomb,'” co-hosts Gomez, Rodriguez, and Sapene say in a joint statement. “But we hope that people of all races, genders, and orientations will see a bit of themselves in our show — or, at the very least, have a good time watching it!”
LATV is the only remaining Latino-owned TV network in the Hispanic television space. Its programming primarily targets U.S.-born Latinos and the coveted bicultural 18-49 Latino demographic, with content that features originally-produced shows in Los Angeles, as well as licensed content that has never before been seen in the U.S. For more go to LATV.com.
About the hosts:
PATRICK GOMEZ is currently a Senior Editor at “Entertainment Weekly”. As a veteran “People” magazine writer and member of the Television Critics Association, the Texas native has appeared on “Today”, “Extra!”, “Access Hollywood”, “E! News”, HLN’s “Michaela”, and “Nightline” and can be seen frequently on “Good Morning America”.
ALEXANDER RODRIGUEZ is an on-air personality and entertainer. His sense of humor shines on his nationally syndicated radio show, “On The Rocks”, “where celebrities and cocktails” on iHeartRadio and Universal Broadcasting Network. The show is broadcast live weekly from Sunset Gower Studios in the heart of Hollywood. The Southern California native also serves as Entertainment Editor for “Bear World Magazine”, a national LGBT online media source.
ENRIQUE SAPENE is an actor, host and producer. The Venezuela native has entertained audiences internationally as a reporter on Univision, NBC, ABC and Telemundo. As an actor, he has recurred on the Amazon Prime series “Borderline” and his telenovelas ” Pecadora”, “El Alma Herida”, “Eva la Trailera” and “Tomame o Dejame” have sold worldwide. In 2017, Enrique joined the cast of the docu-series “My Life is a Telenovela”, which aired on WEtv and E! Latin America and is currently available on Hulu.
Discovery en Español announced today the launch of “GO Originales”, a series of short-form content only available on the Discovery en Español GO App. The new digital programming lineup will focus on genres including Auto, Adventure, Food, Travel and Lifestyle, as well as Tech and Innovation. Discovery en Español GO currently features more than 1,600 hours of content, including full seasons and series of fan favorite shows.
“There has been a steady demand from advertisers for original digital premium content that delivers a great story, said David Tardio, Vice President of Ad Sales, Discovery U.S. Hispanic. “With GO Originales our goal is to satisfy this need and open the doors to more innovative opportunities for clients to connect with Hispanic audiences in their language and screens of choice.”
GO Originales will kick off this month with eight original series, each with a running time between
7 to 12 minutes. The lineup includes:
Auto and Adventure
Enfangados: The show immerses viewers in the world of off-roading in the mud beyond the adventure and deep into the depths of its community, heritage and family. Duration: 10 minutes.
Chrome divas: This episodic series provides an inside look at this all-female motorcycle club – as they struggle to juggle mommy duties and their careers with their thirst for adventure and passion for adrenaline. Duration: 10 minutes.
Conóceme América: Sales guru and motivational coach Wilder “Willy” Rizo embarks on a mission to meet a million people in America. To do this, Willy sells his house and decides to travel in an RV with his family to explore the people and towns of North America. Duration: 8 minutes.
Food, Travel and Lifestyle
Viaja X menos: Mexican-born Alex Tienda, a free-spirited adventurer with over half a million followers on YouTube takes audiences along on his adventures as he visits different corners of the country. His goal is to show viewers how they can explore top U.S. destinations in 48 hours while on a budget. Duration: 10 minutes.
Gastronomía clandestina: Actor, presenter, chef, and former MasterChef Latino runner up, Andrés de Oliveira takes viewers on an underground foodie adventure to discover pop-up restaurants and secret, password required dining establishments. Duration: 10 minutes.
De chuparse los dedos: Grace Ramirez, a former MasterChef USA contestant and creator of the award-winning brand La Latina, tours the U.S. in search of the most finger-licking finger food in the country. Duration: 10 minutes.
Sigue sus pasos: Cristina Sarnoff, an American-Cuban documentary filmmaker born in
New York City tracks the morning rituals of inspiring Hispanics. The shorts follow how these individuals kick start their day to set themselves up for success. Duration: 8 minutes.
Tech and Innovation
TEC + Humanas: Award-winning TV network personality Poncho de Anda delves into how innovative Latinos are fusing the world of technology and humanity. The show aims to inspire and encourage viewers to continue to push technological advancements, while keeping in touch with the human aspect. Duration: 7 minutes.
The Discovery en Español GO App is available on iOS and Android platforms and launching later this month on Roku and Amazon Fire. Aside from GO Originales, other App content includes live and next-day anytime, anywhere access to series and specials, including past seasons of popular network shows like Mexicánicos, Alaska: la última frontera, and Crimen casi perfecto among others.
The U.S. Hispanic GO Apps (Discovery en Español and Discovery Familia GO) have seen consistent growth since launching last year with an average monthly growth of +21% in users +34% in streams.
About Discovery en Español
Discovery en Español connects Spanish-speaking viewers in the U.S. to the world and all its wonder and possibilities. It provides quality programming focusing on bold storytelling across core genres including adventure, ingenuity, natural history, investigation and current affairs. Created by Discovery Communications, Discovery en Español is widely distributed on Hispanic tier packages throughout the country. It also reaches audiences across screens on the ‘’Discovery en Español GO’’TV Everywhere app. For more information, please follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/discoveryenespanol, Twitter @DiscoveryenESP and Instagram @discoveryenespanol.