Entertainment

25 Reasons Why Riverdale’s Camila Mendes Should Be Your #WCW

If you’re not watching The CW’s “Riverdale,” stop what you’re doing because Camila Mendes slays her role as Veronica, Riverdale High School’s newest “silver-tongued sophomore”, fresh in from New York.

Real life actress, Camila Mendes, is actually new on the Hollywood scene, and I needed to know more about my new fave TV character. Here’s 25 Facts about loveable, foodie Camila Mendes that will make you swoon:

1. “Riverdale” is Camila Mendes’ first acting role.

@camimendes / Instagram

She graduated from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts in May 2016, and Cole Sprouse (a.k.a. Jughead) was in her class! P.S. Tisch also produced Gina Rodriguez of “Jane the Virgin.”

2. Though her first gig was in an IKEA commercial.

Camila Mendes Brasi / YouTube

In college, she was immediately recognized for her mad acting skills and was sought after by different casting directors. Muchísimas gracias, Mendes, for becoming Veronica Lodge. ily.

3. She lets us in on some of her college-aged acting vids.

@camimendes / Instagram

She’s so committed to her craft and told People Magazine that she’s relieved to have made her big break. “Now I can actually focus on building a career doing what I love, which was all I’ve ever wanted.”

Caption: “what I did with my free time in 2015”

4. She’s Brazilian-American and speaks fluent Portuguese and Spanish.

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

Which is Camila Mendes ethnic background? She tells People Magazine, “I’m a full-blooded Brazilian, with an entire extended family of Brazilians, but I was born and raised in the U.S. When I go to Brazil, I feel like an American, and in the U.S., I always notice the traits that make me Brazilian.”

5. And she’s got a booty to prove it.

@camimendes / Instagram

Mendes literally just posted a tragedy every single one of us has experienced. The ripped jeans. Caption: “abandon hope all ye brazilian booties who enter these jeans ? #rip” #BootiesFTW

6. Mendes was born in Charlottesville, Virginia.

@camimendes / Instagram

When she was 10, she lived in Brazil for a year, but spent most of her childhood in Miami. She still misses Virginia though!

Caption: “Virginia on my mind ? me and the big sis”

7. But she moved around a lot, including living in Parkland, Florida.

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

Like A LOT. Like 14 times a lot, which has made a big impact on her.

8. She has one tattoo: “To Build a Home”

@camimendes / Instagram

After all the moves, she learned a huge life lesson. She told Latina Magazine, “All you can control is who you are and as long as you stay true to that, then you’re home. I created this idea in my head that no matter where I go I’m home because I am — my body is my home. I got a tattoo below my right breast that says, “To build a home,” because that’s my goal in life — to build a home within myself.”

9. Oh, and she spoke tf up when Cosmopolitan Philippines photoshopped her cover spread.

@lilireinhart / Instagram

Both Lili Reinhart and Mendes posted in a social media fury about this. Mendes told Revelist, “that they would then manipulate our bodies when we are literally preaching body positivity is so personally insulting, and it’s also insulting to the readers. You’re spreading a false message about what people look like, you know?” YAAAS!

10. Mendes is dedicated to breaking the stigma around eating disorders.

@camimendes / Instagram

She shared with her fans, “I can say from experience that eating disorders are serious mental illnesses. Growing up, I watched my big sister suffer from one for many years, and I’ve experienced periods of my life when I’ve suffered symptoms as well.”

11. Mendes wants you to follow @thechainnyc for more #bopo.

@camimendes / Instagram

Caption: “Christina recently co-founded The Chain, a nonprofit organization that offers peer support for women in fashion & entertainment who struggle with eating disorders. I’ve been following @thechainnyc – and having that constant reminder to love my body (especially on instagram where my feed is full of perfect pictures and “perfect bodies,” and especially being in front of a camera every day playing Veronica, who adores her tight mini skirts) is just enough to clear my head of all the negative voices that creep in every once in a while. Our minds can get so contaminated with endless images of perfection, and even if you don’t suffer from an eating disorder, it can’t hurt to incorporate a little body positivity into your routine. Take care of yourself in every way that you can??‍♀️”

12. She loves pizza.

@camimendes / Instagram

This is Mendes doing a photoshoot while eating a slice of pizza. Because a girl’s gotta eat!

13. She will not party without pizza.

@camimendes / Instagram

Plus her on-screen boyfriend, and off screen friend, KJ Apa and “Reggie” actor, Charles Melton.

Caption: “Domino’s Resort 2017 Collection”

14. No, but pizza is really what fuels her genius and guapisima.

@camimendes / Instagram

Caption: “Pizza: “Because you’re worth it” ?” #Verdad

15. She loves a well tossed salad.

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

And her fans couldn’t let her live it down. No worries, Urban Dictionary told her whats up.

16. Her and Cole Sprouse have a strange, beautiful friendship.

@camimendes / Instagram

They both went to Tisch together, and Mendes tells Seventeen, “I remember meeting him on certain occasions and he doesn’t. I’m always like, ‘Fine! Whatever! Sorry I’m not a child star!'”

17. Like this one time she shut Sprouse down.

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

We’re all your fans, Mendes, even child stars like Sprouse. You’re royalty.

18. But Sprouse went for it anyway. LOL

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

“You really captured my soul” jajajaja Mendes is seriously just as fierce and aloof as Veronica Lodge IRL.

19. She loves their friendship though.

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

Umm… I think standom is taking over because I’m strangely here for all of this raro af #Colina mash up.

20. She is proud to break Latinx stereotypes.

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

She told People Magazine, “It’s just so refreshing to see a different story being told for Latin families. The Lodge family is a much-needed departure from the underprivileged, sleazy Latino drug-dealers we’re used to seeing in entertainment. It’s rare that you see Latin families being portrayed as intelligent, sophisticated, and powerful entities.”

21. She also marched in The Women’s March of 2017 with Madelaine Petsch.

@CamilaMendes / Twitter

We’re not sure why she was in Vancouver, but we’re sure as hell screaming for more feminist af Mendes.

22. She’s only 23 years old!

@camimendes / Instagram

Remember when you were 23? And not an insta-star? In an interview, Mendes said she’s definitely learned to value more alone time so she can stay true to herself in this ever-changing industry.

Caption: “being my best self”

23. She had to dye her hair darker to play Veronica.

@camimendes / Instagram

While her costar, Reinhart had to go a little lighter. Together, they are “B & V” and they’re #girlpower friendship carries the show.

24. We’re so glad she did, because “Riverdale” is fulfilling all our childhood dreams.

@camimendes / Instagram

Me and my cousin would collect hundreds of Archie Comics, which are hella dated with your 1950’s style doses of sexism, racism and classism. This new show is dark, real, and llena de drama.

25. Plus, Camila Mendes won The Teen Choice Award’s “Teen Choice Scene Stealer” Award just last year!

@camimendes / Instagram

Congratulations, Camila Mendes! Que ganes todo en su vida! Also, I love you.

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Exclusive: Luis Fonsi Talks Working with Rauw Alejandro, Christina Aguilera, and Demi Lovato

Entertainment

Exclusive: Luis Fonsi Talks Working with Rauw Alejandro, Christina Aguilera, and Demi Lovato

Luis Fonsi is kicking off 2021 with a new single. The Puerto Rican superstar premiered the music video for “Vacío” on Feb. 18 featuring rising Boricua singer Rauw Alejandro. The guys put a new spin on the classic “A Puro Dolor” by Son By Four.

Luis Fonsi throws it back to his románticas.

“I called Omar Alfanno, the writer of ‘A Puro Dolo,’ who is a dear friend,” Fonsi tells Latido Music. “I told him what my idea was [with ‘Vacío’] and he loved it. He gave me his blessing, so I wrote a new song around a few of those lines from ‘A Puro Dolor’ to bring back that nostalgia of those old romantic tunes that have been a part of my career as well. It’s a fresh production. It sounds like today, but it has that DNA of a true, old-school ballad.”

The world got to know Fonsi through his global smash hit “Despacito” with Daddy Yankee in 2017. The remix with Canadian pop star Justin Bieber took the song to new heights. That was a big moment in Fonsi’s music career that spans over 20 years.

There’s more to Fonsi than “Despacito.”

Fonsi released his first album, the fittingly-titled Comenzaré, in 1998. While he was on the come-up, he got the opportunity of a lifetime to feature on Christina Aguilera’s debut Latin album Mi Reflejo in 2000. The two collaborated on “Si No Te Hubiera Conocido.” Fonsi scored multiple Billboard Hot Latin Songs No. 1s in the years that followed and one of the biggest hits was “No Me Doy Por Vencido” in 2008. That was his career-defining romantic ballad.

“Despacito” remains the second most-viewed music video on YouTube with over 7.2 billion views. The hits did not stop there. Later in 2017, he teamed up with Demi Lovato for “Échame La Culpa,” which sits impressively with over 2 billion views.

He’s also appearing on The Voice next month.

Not only is Fonsi working on his new album, but also he’s giving advice to music hopefuls for the new season of The Voice that’s premiering on March 1. Kelly Clarkson tapped him as her Battle Advisor. In an exclusive interview, Fonsi talked with us about “Vacío,” The Voice, and a few of his greatest hits.

What was the experience like to work with Rauw Alejandro for “Vacío”?

Rauw is cool. He’s got that fresh sound. Great artist. Very talented. Amazing onstage. He’s got that great tone and delivery. I thought he had the perfect voice to fit with my voice in this song. We had talked about working together for awhile and I thought that this was the perfect song. He really is such a star. What he’s done in the last couple of years has been amazing. I love what he brought to the table on this song.

Now I want to go through some of your greatest hits. Do you remember working with Christina Aguilera for her Spanish album?

How could you not remember working with her? She’s amazing. That was awhile back. That was like 1999 or something like that. We were both starting out and she was putting out her first Spanish album. I got to sing a beautiful ballad called “Si No Te Hubiera Conocido.” I got to work with her in the studio and see her sing in front of the mic, which was awesome. She’s great. One of the best voices out there still to this day.

What’s one of your favorite memories of “No Me Doy Por Vencido”?

“No Me Doy Por Vencido” is one of the biggest songs in my career. I think it’s tough to narrow it down just to one memory. I think in general the message of the song is what sticks with me. The song started out as a love song, but it turned into an anthem of hope. We’ve used the song for different important events and campaigns. To me, that song has such a powerful message. It’s bigger than just a love song. It’s bringing hope to people. It’s about not giving up. To be able to kind of give [people] hope through a song is a lot more powerful than I would’ve ever imagined. It’s a very special song.

I feel the message is very relevant to the COVID-19 pandemic we’re living through.

Oh yeah! I wrote that song a long time ago with Claudia Brant, and during the first or second month of the lockdown when we were all stuck at home, we did a virtual writing session and we rewrote “No Me Doy Por Vencido.” Changing the lyrics, kind of adjusting them to this situation that we’re living now. I haven’t recorded it. I’ll do something with it eventually. It’s really cool. It still talks about love. It talks about reuniting. Like the light at the end of the tunnel. It has the hope and love backbone, but it has to do a lot with what we’re going through now.

What do you think of the impact “Despacito” made on the industry?

It’s a blessing to be a part of something so big. Again, it’s just another song. We write these songs and the moment you write them, you don’t really know what’s going to happen with them. Or sometimes you run into these surprises like “Despacito” where it becomes a global phenomenon. It goes No. 1 in places where Spanish songs had never been played. I’m proud. I’m blessed. I’m grateful to have worked with amazing people like Daddy Yankee. Like Justin Bieber for the remix and everyone else involved in the song. My co-writer Erika Ender. The producers Mauricio Rengifo and Andrés Torres. It was really a team effort and it’s a song that obviously changed my career forever.

What was the experience like to work with Demi Lovato on “Echáme La Culpa”?

She’s awesome! One of the coolest recording sessions I’ve ever been a part of. She really wanted to sing in Spanish and she was so excited. We did the song in Spanish and English, but it was like she was more excited about the Spanish version. And she nailed it! She nailed it from the beginning. There was really not much for me to say to her. I probably corrected her once or twice in the pronunciation, but she came prepared and she brought it. She’s an amazing, amazing, amazing vocalist.

You’re going to be a battle advisor on The Voice. What was the experience like to work with Kelly Clarkson?

She’s awesome. What you see is what you get. She’s honest. She’s funny. She’s talented. She’s humble and she’s been very supportive of my career. She invited me to her show and it speaks a lot that she wanted me to be a part of her team as a Battle Advisor for the new season. She supports Latin music and I’m grateful for that. She’s everything you hope she would be. She’s the real deal, a true star, and just one of the coolest people on this planet.

What can we expect from you in 2021?

A lot of new music. Obviously, everything starts today with “Vacío.” This is literally the beginning of what this new album will be. I’ve done nothing but write and record during the last 10 months, so I have a bunch of songs. Great collaborations coming up. I really think the album will be out probably [in the] third or fourth quarter this year. The songs are there and I’m really eager for everybody to hear them.

Read: We Finally Have A Spanish-Language Song As The Most Streamed Song Of All Time

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Lifestyles Of The Rich And Dangerous: Cartels Are Using TikTok To Lure Young People

Things That Matter

Lifestyles Of The Rich And Dangerous: Cartels Are Using TikTok To Lure Young People

If you’ve ever wondered what someone with a bulletproof vest and an AR-15 would look like flossing — the dance, not the method of dental hygiene — apparently the answer to that question can be found on TikTok.

Unfortunately, it’s not as a part of some absurdist sketch comedy or surreal video art installation. Instead, it’s part of a growing trend of drug cartels in Mexico using TikTok as a marketing tool. Nevermind the fact that Mexico broke grim records last year for the number of homicides and cartel violence, the cartels have found an audience on TikTok and that’s a serious cause for concern.

Mexican cartels are using TikTok to gain power and new recruits.

Just a couple of months ago, a TikTok video showing a legit high-speed chase between police and drug traffickers went viral. Although it looked like a scene from Netflix’s Narcos series, this was a very real chase in the drug cartel wars and it was viewed by more than a million people.

Typing #CartelTikTok in the social media search bar brings up thousands of videos, most of them from people promoting a “cartel culture” – videos with narcocorridos, and presumed members bragging about money, fancy cars and a luxury lifestyle.

Viewers no longer see bodies hanging from bridges, disembodied heads on display, or highly produced videos with messages to their enemies. At least not on TikTok. The platform is being used mainly to promote a lifestyle and to generate a picture of luxury and glamour, to show the ‘benefits’ of joining the criminal activities.

According to security officials, the promotion of these videos is to entice young men who might be interested in joining the cartel with images of endless cash, parties, military-grade weapons and exotic pets like tiger cubs.

Cartels have long used social media to shock and intimidate their enemies.

And using social media to promote themselves has long been an effective strategy. But with Mexico yet again shattering murder records, experts on organized crime say Cartel TikTok is just the latest propaganda campaign designed to mask the blood bath and use the promise of infinite wealth to attract expendable young recruits.

“It’s narco-marketing,” said Alejandra León Olvera, an anthropologist at Spain’s University of Murcia, in a statement to the New York Times. The cartels “use these kinds of platforms for publicity, but of course it’s hedonistic publicity.”

Mexico used to be ground zero for this kind of activity, where researchers created a new discipline out of studying these narco posts. Now, gangs in Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, and the United States are also involved.

A search of the #CartelTikTok community and its related accounts shows people are responding. Public comments from users such as “Y’all hiring?” “Yall let gringos join?” “I need an application,” or “can I be a mule? My kids need Christmas presents,” are on some of the videos.

One of the accounts related to this cartel community publicly answered: “Of course, hay trabajo para todos,” “I’ll send the application ASAP.” “How much is the pound in your city?” “Follow me on Instagram to talk.” The post, showing two men with $100 bills and alcohol, had more than a hundred comments.

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