Entertainment

Miss Bala’ Wants To Pave A Way For More Latinos To Work In Hollywood Behind And In Front Of The Camera

When it comes to Latino representation in major studio films, there is a huge disparity. Statistics show Latinos are the largest minority group in the country and account for the largest percentage of moviegoers among minorities at 24 percent. Yet when it comes to representation on the big screen, Latinos are severely lacking as they made up only 6.2 percent of speaking characters in the top 100 movies in 2017. “Miss Bala,” an action thriller set to hit theaters on Feb. 1, is trying to change the notion that a predominately Latino cast and crew can’t perform well at the box office.

With a 95 percent Latino cast and crew, “Miss Bala” is set to break some barriers along the way.

“Miss Bala” features Gina Rodriguez, the star of “Jane The Virgin”, and a cast that is compromised of 95 percent Latino from cast to crew. Directed by Catherine Hardwicke, the film that centers around Gloria, a makeup artist from Los Angeles who finds her own power when she is kidnapped and forced to smuggle money for a drug cartel. The film is a remake of the 2011 Mexican film directed by Gerardo Naranjo and was produced by Pablo Cruz, who oversaw the original film.

Having a cast that is predominantly Latino is a rarity in today’s Hollywood landscape. After films like “Black Panther” and “Crazy Rich Asians” dominated the box office, “Miss Bala” is getting its chance to give Latinos they’re big break at the box office. What makes the film even more special is the leading role will be a Latina, in an action film nonetheless.

Gina Rodriguez hopes the film opens the door for more Latino representation in TV and film.

Rodriguez made her big splash when she won a Golden Globe in 2015 for her leading role in “Jane The Virgin.” Shortly after, the 34-year-old actress became one of the faces of Latino representation in Hollywood. It’s also a topic she isn’t afraid of speaking up about. Rodriguez has been outspoken about Latin American representation in television and film, she has also acknowledged she can’t be the only voice representing the Latino community.

“There’s no way I can represent the Latinx community alone. We come in varied shades and skin color and eye color and hair, and political background and religious background and the complexities of the Latinx community is so great,” Rodriguez said in a CBS interview. “So to be an advocate is important for me, because if I can create more opportunities and you can see more and the varied beautiful cultures does encompass the Latinx community.”

“Miss Bala” will be the first lead movie role for Rodriguez and will soon be the new face of Netflix’s Carmen Sandiego.

“Miss Bala” isn’t trying to just break Hollywood taboos but start a movement by making Latino-led films the new norm.

There is hope that the success of the film can create a movement in Hollywood where Latino-led films will get more opportunities. Cruz says he hopes this is just the first installment of Miss Bala.

“What will be amazing is if in a year or two we’re making the third installment of ‘Miss Bala,’ and we say (expletive), there are two more films like ours because now things have changed,” Cruz told USA Today.

Alex Nogales, President and CEO of the National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC), says the film represents a new barrier being broken for Latinos. He’s seen many studios pass on films like “Miss Bala” and hopes this is the step in the right direction.

“The NHMC supports films like MISS BALA that are not only compelling and outstanding artistically but are also barrier-breaking, hiring a cast and crew that is 95 percent Latino. This at a time when research shows Latino leads and speaking roles in the top grossing films in recent years are nearly non-existent,” Nogales said. “This is a solid film that will likely show a nearly all-Latino cast and crew can mean good business for a major Hollywood studio.”


READ: This ‘Roma’ Actor Has Been Denied A Visa For The Third Time And Might Miss The Oscars

Share this story with all of your friends by tapping that little share button below!

‘Jane The Virgin’ Star Gets Hit With More Backlash After Using The N-Word On Instagram

Entertainment

‘Jane The Virgin’ Star Gets Hit With More Backlash After Using The N-Word On Instagram

Somebody get the shovel out of Gina Rodriguez’s hands because she officially went there with anti-black sentiments and said the N-word. Cue tear and the moment she dusts off her Afro-Latina card to excuse herself from backlash.

The former star of CW’s ‘Jane The Virgin’ has been ruffling feathers in the Black Twitter community for a while. Criticism of Rodriguez and her approach to speaking about and to the Black community goes all of the way back to 2017 when the actress criticized “Black Panther” for its lack of Latino inclusion. During a 2018 press junket, the Puerto Rican actress attempted to “All Lives Matter” actress Yara Shahidi when she was asked about being a role model for black girls When the actress tried once again to. Then, this year the actress was slammed not once by twice within a matter of months after she falsely stated that Latinas are paid less than any other race in Hollywood and then cried during a radio interview and essentially accused the Black community of being too hard on her while also using her father, who she claims is Afro-Latino, as an excuse for not being anti-Black.

Now the actress is facing backlash after posting a video of herself using the N-word while singing.

On Tuesday, Rodriguez posted a video of herself singing along to “Ready or Not” by the Fugees to her Instagram stories.

“Voodoo, I could do what you do, believe me,” Rodriguez sang in the video, “N***** give me heebie-jeebies.” The video stayed up on her stories for 3 hours before it was taken down. Later the actress apologized for her use of words saying in another story that she was sorry for singing along to the lyrics, which doesn’t really address the true issue.

“Hey what’s up everybody I just wanted to reach out and apologize. I am sorry. I am sorry if I offended anyone by singing along to the Fugees to a song that I love that I grew up on. I love Lauren Hill and I’m really sorry if I offended you,” she said.

Many have speculated that Rodriguez thought because she was singing a lyrics she could get away with using the derogatory term.

Others have accused the actress of being flip with her apology.

Nevertheless, Rodriguez’s reaction to backlash is pretty on-brand for her previous anti-Black sentiments.

‘The Craft’ Remake Is Going To Put Brujería Front And Center With A Trans Latinx Actress

Entertainment

‘The Craft’ Remake Is Going To Put Brujería Front And Center With A Trans Latinx Actress

@iamzoeyluna / Instagram

Just in time for Spooky Season, we are getting news about the upcoming “Craft” reboot. The 1996 supernatural thriller about four young women experimenting with the occult was a blockbuster hit that still has die-hard fans. Earlier this year, a reboot of the film was announced by popular horror production company, Blumhouse Productions. Blumhouse has given us such films as “Get Out” and “The Purge” series so there’s no doubt that it can do justice to this cult classic. 

Now, it seems we officially have a new quartet of witches for this reboot with the addition of a final actress to take on one of the starring roles. 

Completing the main cast is trans Latinx actress Zoey Luna in the role of Lourdes.

Twitter / @blumhouse

Back in June of 2017, the production company put out a casting notice for the part, looking for a young transgender Latina actress to play the role. According to Blumhouse, “Lourdes is the second member of the teenaged Clique. Her super-Catholic mother threw her out for being trans and she now lives with her 80-year-old abuela, who has taught Lourdes a variety of supernatural practices.”

Luna joins Cailee Spaeny, Gideon Adlon and Lovie Simone as the four women at the focus of the supernatural horror story. Much like the 1996 version, the reboot will center upon a new girl coming into the school and befriending three other social outcasts to form a witchy coven. The film is being written, directed and produced by Zoe Lister-Jones.

Relatively new to the acting world, this will be Luna’s first big role as an actress. 

Twitter / @lgbtqnation

Luna’s start in the world of acting began with documentaries about being a transgender woman. Among them is “15: A Quinceañera Story,” a documentary about Luna and other young girls getting ready for their quinceañeras with the help of trans women who never got the same opportunity. The young actress also recently appeared in a Season 2 episode of “Pose.”

Since its announcement over the weekend, news of Luna’s casting has been celebrated by trans activists and members of the LGBTQ+ community as a step forward for trans representation. 

Twitter / @TransEquality

Horror movies have a bad history of including trans female storylines as a means to terrify or shock viewers. The decision of Blumhouse to cast a trans actress for a trans role might be a sign that this will be one of the first positive trans female depictions in horror.

Other Twitter users were enthusiastic to see not only trans representation but representation for trans people of color. 

Twitter / @RaeGun2k

Transgender women especially Black trans women are often the focus of violence. In 2018, 26 trans women were murdered. Seeing more positive representations of trans women in media is a step towards the very necessary inclusion that our communities need.  

Of course, we’re really excited to see some brujeria brought to the film. 

Twitter / @en_tze

Brujeria is an important subset of witchcraft but isn’t as represented as other elements of witchery. When it is shown in film and media, it’s often represented negatively or through the use of hokey stereotypes. To see it used as the main storyline in the reboot of this well-loved movie is definitely an improvement. 

As of now, “The Craft” reboot doesn’t have a date to start filming or for its release. Still, we’ll be sure to keep you up to date on all the bewitching news that comes from the set.