Entertainment

The New ‘Saved by the Bell’ Reboot Announced That It Has Cast Trans Actress Josie Totah

School at Bayside High is back in session! This time, the role of the most popular kid in school won’t be the infamous blonde-headed boy heartthrob Zack Morris. Instead, the role of the kid to rule the school is being taken on by Josie Totah.

The 18-year-old American actress is set to play Lexi on NBC’s reboot of “Saved By the Bell.”

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According to Deadline, Totah is signed to join the original series cast members, including Elizabeth Berkley and Mario Lopez, in the NBC Universal’s streaming platform Peacock. A statement by Deadline says that “Totah will play Lexi, a beautiful, sharp-tongued cheerleader and the most popular girl at Bayside High who is both admired and feared by her fellow students.”

According to reports, th new series, which acts as more of a sequel than a reboot, is set to follow Zack Morris as a California Gov. who comes under fire after closing too many low-income schools. To remedy the situation he sends displaced students to higher-performing schools including Bayside High.

Totah’s casting role is big news and history in the making because of it what it means for the trans community. 

Totah first gained attention as an actor when she started in the short-lived Mindy Kaling series “Champions.” AT the time, Totah had not come out as trans. She ultimately did so in an essay for Time Magazine writing “When I was really young, growing up in a small town in Northern California, people would just assume I was gay. On the playground, I was the type of kid who wanted to sing with the girls, not play soccer with the boys. Then I found myself playing that role once I got into the entertainment industry, and people kept assuming my identity. Numerous reporters have asked me in interviews how it feels to be a young gay man. I was even introduced that way before receiving an award from an LGBTQ+ rights organization. I understand that they didn’t really know better. I almost felt like I owed it to everybody to be that gay boy. But that has never been the way I think of myself.”

Totah went onto say that she planed on going off to college and continuing her acting career saying “I plan to play roles I haven’t had the opportunity to play. And I can only imagine how much more fun it’s going to be to play someone who shares my identity, rather than having to contort myself to play a boy. I’m going to gun for those roles, be it a transgender female or a cisgender female. Because it’s a clean slate — and a new world.”

Strangely, Totah is set to star along Mario Lopez, who was criticized late last year for anti-transgender comments in June.

Speaking in an interview on the “The Candace Owens Show” Lopez said that it was “dangerous” for parents of children as young as three years old to permanently label their kids as transgender.“I’m kind of blown away, too,” Lopez said in the interview with Owens. “I’m never one to tell anyone how to parent their kids, obviously, and I think if you come from a place of love, you really can’t go wrong, but at the same time, my God, if you’re 3 years old and you’re saying you’re feeling a certain way or you think you’re a boy or a girl or whatever the case may be, I just think it’s dangerous as a parent to make that determination.”

Following the backlash, the actorapologized in a statement sent to The Advocate. “The comments I made were ignorant and insensitive, and I now have a deeper understanding of how hurtful they were,” he told the outlet at the time. 

Lopez took a day off of work from “Extra” following the backlashed he received even after his public apology and returned to work later that week. At the time, producers over at “Extra,” where Lopez acts currently as a host, did release a statement that same week saying: “While we have enjoyed a long relationship with Mario Lopez, who we know to be a caring person, the opinions he expressed in this interview do not reflect those of Extra. We wholeheartedly embrace our friends from the LGBTQ community and believe they need support and love.”

GLAAD, a non-profit media monitoring organization founded by LGBT people, also weighed in on Lopez’s comments and the repercussions they have. The organization says that experts have long previously discredited Lopez’s claims. 

“Medical and psychological experts and parents of children who are transgender have long discredited the ideas that @MarioLopezExtra shared. The real dangerous action is when someone with a public platform uses bad science to speak against a vulnerable group of children.”

Here’s hoping Lopez behaves appropriately on set while working with his new co-star.

Stephanie Beatriz Breaks Down In Tears Talking To Daniel Levy About LGBTQ+ Representation In Entertainment

Entertainment

Stephanie Beatriz Breaks Down In Tears Talking To Daniel Levy About LGBTQ+ Representation In Entertainment

The Kelly Clarkson Show / YouTube

There is a lot of talk in Hollywood about bettering the representation of people across the board. One group fighting for more representation is the LGBTQ+ community. The LGBTQ+ community is vast covering every race, religion, and ethnicity. Kelly Clarkson recently had Daniel Levy of “Schitt’s Creek” and Stephanie Beatriz of “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” and the emotions flowed between the two queer icons.

Stephanie Beatriz and Daniel Levy joined Kelly Clarkson on her talk show the love between the two queer stars was real.

Credit: @SchittsCreek / Twitter

The two queer actors sat down on the couch to talk about the importance of furthering LGBTQ+ representation on television. The conversation between the two entertainers started with an explosion of love and kind words between the two.

“I just have to say, as a fellow person in the queer community, I am so amazed by you. I think the fact that the Human Rights Campaign is honoring you is not enough,” Beatriz told Levy. “I’m going to cry! It’s going to happen! I just think that your work, in general, is so beautiful and so thrilling.”

The pure love and joy of these two celebrating their efforts to being more LGBTQ+ representation to entertainment is touching hearts and minds.

Credit: @chrisharnick / Twitter

“The thing that you’ve done, which I think is so incredible is that you’ve introduced audiences to this character who just so happens to be who he is,” Beatriz said about Levy’s “Schitt’s Creek” character. “That is the way to create change, social change, empathy in people. It’s so incredible.”

Even people who don’t like talk shows are seeing the value in this exchange.

Credit: @twwings / Twitter

While there is a lot of talk about Beatriz gushing over Levy, Clarkson did turn the conversation to the Latina actress. Clarkson asked Beatriz about how you can help people who are not familiar with LGBTQ+ people to accept these characters.

“It’s definitely like a spoonful of sugar. We got you with those laughs and then we’re going to keep you coming, right? And by the time that you’ve introduced it, you’ve already got the audience in love with you,” Beatriz said. “They already know you, they trust you, you’re funny, you’re having a good time, and then suddenly, for maybe quite a few people, you’re going to be the first person that they’re meeting that identifies that way or is that sexuality.”

Fans of the two are pouring on the love.

Credit: @userkhang / Twitter

Beatriz admitted that she felt so honored to be able to not only portray an openly bisexual woman but an openly bisexual Latina. Beatriz came out herself as bisexual and was able to get the writers to include it in her character on the show.

The tears and love for this exchange are real and we are all better for having seen it.

Credit: @danlesby / Twitter

Thank you for always being true to yourselves and showing the younger LGBTQ+ community that they can be who they are without fear and shame. This is an important lesson so many people could benefit from.

Watch the full touching exchange below.

READ: Melissa Fumero and Stephanie Beatriz of ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ Are The Other Latina TV Duo Absolutely Killing It

The ‘Traveling Selena’ Instagram Page Is The Sweetest Fan Page You’ll Find On The Internet

Entertainment

The ‘Traveling Selena’ Instagram Page Is The Sweetest Fan Page You’ll Find On The Internet

travelingselena / Instagram

At the height of her fame, Selena was a Tejano star whose concert attendance shattered records both abroad and at home while also gaining her certain type of love and adoration that can only be attributed to her fans. Today, nearly 30 years after her death, the American singer’s legacy has continued its stretch across the globe, partially in thanks to a devoted Instagram profile called Traveling Selena which features the late singer in Barbie doll form at some of the most recognizable sights around the world.

Twenty-four years after her death, Traveling Selena is making sure her influence is still being felt across the world.

In the style of a traveling gnome, the Instagram account is taking n the Tejano singer to some of the most recognizable sights in the world. Even more exciting the page’s creator features Selena wearing some of her more memorable outfits. The page’s account describes itself as taking pics in front of some of the most beautiful places! Outfits and pics are all my own.”

So far Selena has gone to the Grand Palace in Bangkok.

During her career, Selena expanded her fan following by touring New York City, Argentina, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Central America. At the time of her death, despite her broad international fan base which included countries such as Japan and Australia, she had not traveled much outside of the Americas. Now ya girl is getting to do the Bidi Bidi Bom Bom wherever the account goes. Including.

To Phuket.

Where even ancient dragons aren’t as fire as her replicated outfits.

They’ve even taken her to San Fran…

Where Selena’s most basic fan base will adore the Instagrammable pics taken by the bridge and the house from “Full House.”

And to see one of the world’s most iconic figures of all: Selena herself in wax form.

How meta.

6. San Diego

I love that they have Selena being a true millenial taking pciks in front of mural art.

7. The zoo

And heading off to bless the animals at the zoo with her presence.

8. Her own mural

The best part of these pics is that we now get to add locations to our bucket list.

8. Khao San Road

Literall watching Selena head off to all of these places is giving me so much wanderlust.

9. Phi Phi Islands

Her trip to Thailand looks like the best ever and now I want to go take a vacay at a tropical get away.

10. On a Tuk Tuk

This is the best look above all and now I want to hop on a tuk tuk and take a ride!

11. Sunset Station

Nothing more divine than Selena in her Dreaming of You outfit.

12. Aruba

Selena visiting the Caribbean?! Hope the account takes her back to Puerto Rico.

13. Multnoham Falls

Selena literally living our best lives beyond the grave is everything.

14. Avatar Land

James Cameron would be so lucky to include the Latina icon in his wonderfully made up land.

15. Palace of Fine Arts

Selena being her most real Barbie self outside of the palace of fine arts is everything .

16. Coca Cola classic!!

And look at her chilling next to her favorite beverage of choice.

17. Las Vegas!

Seeing the diva showing off a totally classic outfit on the strip will give you major going out vibes. Bidi bidi bom bom.

18. The Full House house

Selena rocking her fullest self at the Full House house will give you all kinds of nostalgia for forever.

19. Her favorite place in all of the land!

Selena went to visit her favorite state in the country: Texas for Halloween and got dressed up as the true reina that she is.

20. The gum wall

Wearing one of her iconic outfits, Selena suited up to go to the gum wall.