entertainment

Karla Souza Is A Trilingual Entertainer Who Never Ceases To Amaze Us

karlasouza / Instagram

You might recognize Karla Souza as either your favorite Mexican telenovela star or as Laurel Castillo on “How to Get Away with Murder.” The actress is one of many Latinos who has crossed over from telenovela stardom to American markets.

If you had no idea that the actress has an entire, wildly successful career in Mexico, you’re going to want to sit down to truly meet Karla Souza and her ancestors who gave us Souza in all her trilingual glory.

Her full name is Karla Susana Olivares Souza.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

The actress is only 33 years old and has been working as an actress since she was 22 years old, in both Spanish and English language works.

Souza was born in Mexico City on December 11, 1985.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

That’s right. Our girl is a fierce, assertive and heart-open Sagittarius Mexicana. She lived in Mexico City until she was two years old and her family moved to Aspen, Colorado.

Souza attributes her blessings to her paternal abuelita, Elba Silva.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Elba moved to New York City from Chile in search of a better life. She became a U.S. citizen, which gave Souza’s own father a path to citizenship when he eventually decided to move to the U.S. years later.

Elba was revered for her courage and her “killer Chilean empanadas.”

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

In an op-ed for PopSugar, Souza writes that, “She made killer Chilean empanadas and was stubborn as all get out.” Elba worked as an assistant cook with the Rockefeller family for over 20 years. Elba’s husband became the Rockefellers’ gardener.

Souza’s Chilean father met her Mexicana madre in Mexico City.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Souza’s father ran his Mexican shoe business from Colorado for five years. Then, as Souza recalls, “I vaguely remember receiving the letter from then President, Bill Clinton, saying something like: “Congratulations! You are now a citizen of the United States of America.” Which to me meant nothing at the time.”

Souza lived in Europe for 8 years and returned to Mexico for another ten years.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She is proud to be Mexican and proud to be Latina. She first studied acting at Centro de Educación Artística in Mexico city and then went to France to tour with a professional theatre company.

Souza speaks three languages fluently.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She speaks English, Spanish and French so fluently, that she was offered a role in the French reality TV show “Star Academy.” She turned it down after receiving an invitation to study at London’s Central School of Speech and Drama. She graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts in acting.

She even studied acting in Moscow, Russia for a minute.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Souza has been tapped for numerous prestigious awards and invitations, including an acting intensive with Anatoly Smilianski at the end of her college career.

Her television debut was on Mexican telenovela “Verano de amor.”

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She later scored starring roles in Mexican sitcoms “Los Héroes del Norte” and “La Clinica.” You might also recognize her from Mexican box office hits “Nosotros los Nobles,” “From Prada to Nada,” and “Instructions Not Included.”

She moved to Los Angeles in 2014 to be told she was not “Latina enough” for Latina roles.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

In an op-ed with Pop Sugar, Souza recounts how she would enter an audition for a character only described as “The Latina,” and be questioned. In her own words:

“I’m sorry . . . How exactly are you Latin?” asks the casting director before doing the scene.

“I’m Mexican,” Karla replies.

Still some doubt and skepticism on the casting director’s face prompts Karla to respond:

“My mother is Mexican and my dad is from Chile. I was born in Mexico City. I just moved to Los Angeles two weeks ago.”

Needless to say I didn’t book that job. I wasn’t “Latina enough.”

When she was cast for Shonda Rhimes’ legal drama series How to Get Away with Murder, they wrote her own background into her character’s story.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Why? Because if you’re Latina, you’re Latina enough, and your story is the story of a Latina. We love that Shonda Rhimes’ team included that her character, Laurel Castillo, was born in Mexico City, just like Souza.

Souza is teasing a project in which she seems to be playing an astronaut and we have questions.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Caption: “Space jam. 😉”

Stop teasing us, Souza! Are you playing first ever Latina astronaut, Ellen Ochoa? Quien es?

What we do know is she’s using her influence to elevate life for Mexicans and Latinxs in the U.S.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Caption: “TBT: Earlier this month magic happened when over 100 fierce Latinas gathered in LA. We talked about how we will use our collective influence & power to improve conditions for the Latinx community & everyone in the US. We made a commitment to ourselves and to each other. We are not sitting on the sidelines. Stay tuned for more information about what we are working on for the betterment of all. #LatinasLead #LatinaPower

Souza also co-founded the Los Angeles En México non-profit with Kate del Castillo, Ana De La Reguera and Olga Segura.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Her organization is focusing on the families in San Miguel Tecuanipa and how to rebuild their homes, livelihoods and security after the devastating earthquake in 2017.

Her TEDx talk is the most seen Spanish language talk in history.

CREDIT: TEDx / YouTube

Titled “Sweet are the Fruits of Adversity,” Souza’s talk has more than 3.7 million views to date. If you’re looking for Spanish-language inspo, you know where to go.

In May 2014, Souza married Marshall Trenkmann.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Trenkmann is a Texan banker, and the two had been together for awhile before tying the knot. They married just four months after their engagement.

The two have a daughter, Gianna, together.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Four years into their marriage, they welcomed this sweet baby girl. You might have noticed if you keep up with How to Get Away with Murder.

She became an on-screen and IRL mom at the same time.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

How to Get Away with Murder adapted Karla’s real life pregnancy to her character, Laurel Castillo. Her character realized she was pregnant after the baby’s father died in a suspicious fire. :'(

“The one thing people don’t tell you about motherhood is that your life isn’t over.”

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

On Katie Lowes’ podcast “Katie’s Crib,” Souza talks about how she integrates motherhood into her existing, very busy schedule on set. You can tell she gets creative.

Souza is still making time during motherhood, acting and advocating for Latinxs to be part of the #TimesUp movement.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She revealed in February 2018 that she was raped by the director of a TV show she was in when she was 22 years old. She didn’t name her attacker but continues to link to the www.timesupnow.com in her Instagram profile.

We are shipping her, Gianna, everything she stands for and hopefully her role as Ellen Ochoa. 😍

READ: Chicharito, Karla Souza, Wilmer Valderrama And Others Show Their Support For Canelo Alvarez

Cardi Saved $35k in Singles By the Time She Was 22, And Other Things You Should Know About Cardi B Before She Made It

Entertainment

Cardi Saved $35k in Singles By the Time She Was 22, And Other Things You Should Know About Cardi B Before She Made It

iamcardib / Instagram

There’s no question that Cardi B is the hardest working bruja out there and you either love her or hate her. Cardi B has the true rags to riches story and she didn’t wait for a Prince Charming to sweep her off her feet. She made money move on her own right.

While Cardi B is totally open about her life–when she’s tired, gassy and hungry–on social media, she’s professionally made up almost all the time for work. Before Cardi B got famous (and before she deleted and reopened her Instagram account), she was just as open about her life. Here’s all the throwbacks and facts about pre-famous Cardi B to inspire you through your dreams.

Today, the 26-year-old is a spokesperson for Pepsi.

CREDIT: @pepsi / Twitter

Which is kind of a huge deal. She’s in the same ranks of icons like Britney Spears and Michael Jackson.

But before she was Cardi B, she was Belcalis Marlenis Almánzar.

CREDIT: @Estrellitzz / Twitter

Her nickname growing up was “Bacardi,” possibly because she was a fan of the rum. That got shortened to “Cardi B” and the rest is history.

Her father, Carlos, brings the Dominican out in her.

CREDIT: “Cardi B family – father Carlos Almanzar” Digital Image. BodyHeightWeight. 26 March 2019.

She also has six half-siblings from her father’s side. Her parents split up when she was ten years old.

Her mother is Afro-Trinidadian.

CREDIT: “Cardi B with mom and sister Hennessy” Digital Image. BodyHeightWeight. 26 March 2019.

Cardi and her sister, Hennessy grew up in the Highbridge barrio of the South Bronx. They spent a lot of their time with their paternal abuelo in Washington Heights.

Her sister was named after the rum their dad was drinking on the way to the hospital where she was born.

CREDIT: “Cardi B with sister Hennessy Carolina” Digital Image. BodyHeightWeight. 26 March 2019.

The two are tight. Hennessy identifies as queer and is married. Cardi has spoken out in support of the LGBT community (and her sister).

The two were raised Catholic and Cardi has credits God for the guidance in her life.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

You’ll see it on her Instagram profile to this day: “GOD IS GREAT 🙏🏼”

Cardi joined the Bloods when she was 16 years old.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

People started calling her a poser, so she went to Twitter in 2017 to proudly admit that she was for real in the infamous gang. Since then, she’s made it super clear that she doesn’t encourage anyone joining gangs.

Her first job was at a supermarket in Lower Manhattan.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

Her manager of several years fired her and told her she should just become a stripper. Her next thought must have been “damn straight.”

Cardi started stripping at 19 years old and credits it with “saving her life.”

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

She was in an abusive relationship and was looking for financial independence to get out. She’s her own knight in shining armor.

There are rumors that Sheck Wes was abusive to Cardi B when they were dating.

CREDIT: @RSpotlights / Twitter

This picture of the two before they both got famous. One woman accused Sheck Wes of stalking and attacking her and her friends, and he’s denied the allegations.

Cardi was able to save $35,000 in singles by the time she was 22 years old.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

Cardi has made it super clear that she turned to stripping to get out of poverty. It was a decision made out of a desperation she doesn’t wish on anyone, but it saved her life.

After she started stripping, she was able to afford to go back to school.

CREDIT: @chamoniIIe / Twitter

Though she admits that she had trouble in school as a kid because she couldn’t stop telling jokes. Still, the money got her through community college for a few years.

She’s super open about the plastic surgery she had to elevate her stripping career.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

Cardi has said that she didn’t think people went to strip clubs to see people “who walked off the street.” We all already know: “The only thing fake is the boobs.”

Cardi has opened up about a very painful, illegal experience getting a basement ‘Brazilian butt lift.’

CREDIT: @badchickz100 / Twitter

This surgery is named the most fatal surgery in America, and Cardi had it done in a basement without any anesthesia. She passed out from the pain. When she went back for more, she found out that someone had died on the table the week before and the woman selling the injections was in jail for manslaughter.

Cardi retired ‘early’ from stripping for her next venture into Love & Hip Hop.

CREDIT: @GlobalGrind / Twitter

She had planned to retire from stripping when she was 25 years old, but retired early for her next professional gig, Love & Hip Hop.

She used the money from LHH to “fix her teeth”.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

She said it cost about the same as a luxury size SUV, but that it was real worth it. This image is her showing off her pearly whites on an Instagram story from back in the day.

Cardi’s been going to Nails on 7th since she was a teenager.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

She still goes there to get her nails done to this day, and her fame has made business boom for the women-owned nail salon.

Cardi’s been educating people on what it means to be Afro-Latina since the get-go.

CREDIT: @TakiemotoDoll / Twitter

In an interview with Zendaya in CR Fashion Book, Cardi opened up about her frustrations with public ignorance:

“We are Caribbean people […] Some people want to decide if you’re black or not, depending on your skin complexion, because they don’t understand Caribbean people or our culture. I feel like people need to understand or get a passport and travel. I don’t got to tell you that I’m black. I expect you to know it. When my father taught me about Caribbean countries, he told me that these Europeans took over our lands. That’s why we all speak different languages […] Just like everybody else, we came over here the same way. I hate when people try to take my roots from me. Because we know that there’s African roots inside of us…”

In just two years, Cardi went from a NYC stripper to $8 million net worth Grammy winner and mother.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

We don’t care what you think about Cardi B, we are shipping her success, and all the music she’s giving the Latino community.

We’re over here waiting for Cardi to get her own reality TV show so she can dish it all.

CREDIT: @revolttv / Twitter

Also. We need more Cardi memes in our life. Give us those throwbacks, Cardi!

READ: People Want Houston To Honor Los Tigres Del Norte With Their Own Day After Beating Cardi B’s Record

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