Entertainment

Latino Celebs Go Savage On Hateful Republicans

Twenty-three Latino celebrities and activists came together today for a single mission: to urge Latinos to not vote Republican. America Ferrera, Zoe Saldana, Dolores Huerta, George Lopez, and many more have put their name behind an open letter to the Latino community that is trying to point out the harmful and damaging rhetoric that is being spewed by leading Republican presidential candidates. “We must not, though, let Trump’s xenophobia overshadow the extreme policies being pushed by every single one of the GOP’s leading presidential candidates.” Grab the popcorn, because this gets good.

Latino celebrities and activists from American Ferrera to Dolores Huerta have a message for Latinos: don’t vote Republican.

The celebrities, including guitarist and musician Carlos Santana, call for all Latinos to vote in favor of strengthening the Latino community and Latino families.

Of course, civil rights icon Dolores Huerta offered some insight like only she can. #SlayQueen

Even the “Jane the Virgin” abuelita, Ivonne Coll, offered her name and voice to the cause.

Credit: @ivonne_coll / Twitter

“From Donald Trump comparing Mexican immigrants to rapists to Marco Rubio portraying all immigrants as potential terrorists, I know that our communities will stand up against their attacks by using our voting power in 2016,” Coll said in the press release.

And the letter itself did not hold back when it came to publicly shaming each of the candidates for what they have said about Latinos.

Rocking the #MinnieMouse today! #manicmondays #LivebyNight #workingmom

A photo posted by Zoe Saldana (@zoesaldana) on

Credit: @zoesaldana / Instagram

“The candidates cannot come back from these hardline stances,” the open letter proclaims. “Trump is certainly an outlier for his racist remarks. But the rest of the Republican presidential candidates went off the deep end with him.”

READ: This Latina Actress Was Asked A Ridiculous Question About Voting And Fired Back With Perfect Shade

“Marco Rubio said that ‘we must secure our border, the physical border, with a wall, absolutely,'” the letter reads. “He’s ruled out any path to citizenship or legal status during his term(s) as president if elected.”

Taking questions from the press on the flight to South Carolina this morning.

A photo posted by Senator Marco Rubio (@marcorubiofla) on

“Jeb Bush’s unapologetic use of the term “anchor babies” aligns with his belief that undocumented immigrants here in the U.S. should not have a path to citizenship,” the letter states. “His statement that ‘we should not have a multicultural society’ is indefensible.”

I'm running for President of the United States. I will run with heart. I will run to win.

A photo posted by Jeb Bush (@jebbush) on

Chris Christie suggested that immigrants should be tracked like FedEx packages.

Happy Birthday to my partner and my best friend Mary Pat. I am one lucky guy to have her by my side throughout this crazy ride. #MPC

A photo posted by Governor Chris Christie (@chrischristie) on

Check out the full letter below:

An Open Letter to the Latino Community:

In this year’s 2016 Republican presidential primary, the candidates crossed a line. In trying to win the nomination, every one of the leading candidates dug themselves into a deep hole pandering to the anti-immigrant base of the Republican Party that idolizes Donald Trump.

There’s no coming back from this. We’ve seen clearly that all the leading Republican candidates have sided with the far-right at the expense of the Latino community. They’re capitalizing on negative stereotypes and inaccurate information about our community in order to win votes from the GOP base.

Of course, this downward spiral began with Trump. From accusing Mexicans of being rapists to kicking Jorge Ramos out of his press conference, Trump has spent the entirety of his presidential  bid stoking unfounded anti-immigrant fears and deeply offending our communities.

We must not, though, let Trump’s xenophobia overshadow the extreme policies being pushed by every single one of the GOP’s leading presidential candidates. Latinos should understand that Donald Trump embodies the true face of the entire Republican Party. Sadly, he speaks for the GOP’s anti-immigrant, anti-Latino agenda.

Candidates – including supposed “moderates” like Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio – used dangerous, divisive rhetoric and proposed harmful policies in their efforts to win over Trump’s radical supporters. Jeb Bush’s unapologetic use of the term “anchor babies” aligns with his belief that undocumented immigrants here in the U.S. should not have a path to citizenship. His statement that “we should not have a multicultural society” is indefensible. Marco Rubio said that “we must secure our border, the physical border, with a wall, absolutely.” He’s ruled out any path to citizenship or legal status during his term(s) as president if elected. Chris Christie suggested that immigrants should be tracked like FedEx packages.

The candidates cannot come back from these hardline stances. Trump is certainly an outlier for his racist remarks. But the rest of the Republican presidential candidates went off the deep end with him.

Our communities have the power to decide who wins in the 2016 election. We hope that power is used to vote for candidates who support our community, share our values, and will fight for working families. Neither Trump nor any of his fellow Republican candidates meet that standard.

Even if the eventual Republican nominee backtracks on his or her anti-immigrant sentiments, we must not forget that we’ve now seen that in the face of bigotry, the Republican candidates have chosen to turn their backs on our community. The current slate of GOP candidates has proven to us that they’ve joined and embraced the party of Trump.

Signed,

Yancey Arias

Esteban Benito

Benjamin Bratt

Peter Bratt

Raúl Castillo

Ivonne Coll

Wilson Cruz

Giselle Fernandez

America Ferrera

Mike Gomez

Lisa Guerrero

Dolores Huerta

Eva LaRue

George Lopez

Rick Najera

José-Luis Orozco

Aubrey Plaza

Steven Michael Quezada

Judy Reyes

Zoe Saldana

Miguel Sandoval

Carlos Santana

Lauren Vélez

What do you think about this open letter to the Latino community? Share this story and get the message out that our vote is going to make a HUGE difference!

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America Ferrera Recounts Her First Hollywood Audition Where She Was Asked to Sound “More Latina”

Entertainment

America Ferrera Recounts Her First Hollywood Audition Where She Was Asked to Sound “More Latina”

The 72nd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards were held on Sunday, and big-name stars gathered to celebrate and acknowledge groundbreaking television programs. One of the celebrities that made a special appearance was America Ferrera.

In a segment called “This Is What I Sound Like,” Ferrera spoke about her troubling experiences as a young Latina actress just starting off in Hollywood.

Before the segment, “Grown-ish” actress Yara Shahidi introduced the segment, emphasizing the importance of representation onscreen.

“The stories we tell on TV shape how we see ourselves and others,” she said. “And how we are seen can many times determine how we are treated. The dream of television is the freedom to live our full and nuanced lives outside of boxes and assumptions.”

In a pre-recorded segment, Ferrera then described her first audition in Hollywood–an experience that ended up being a formative one.

“I was 16-years-old when I got my very first audition and I was this little brown chubby Valley Girl who spoke, you know, like a Valley Girl,” Ferrera explained. “I walked in, did my audition. The casting director looked at me and was like, ‘That’s great. Can you do that again, but this time, sound ‘more Latina?””

According to Ferrera, she asked the casting director whether she wanted her to do the audition in Spanish. The casting director declined. Ferrera tried to explain the contradiction of the directions, telling the casting director: “I am a Latina and this is what I sound like.” Needless to say, she did not get the part.

When she went home to tell her family the story, they seemed unsurprised by the blatant stereotyping Ferrera was facing. They told her that the entertainment industry will want her to “speak in broken English” and “sound like a chola”.

“What did you think was gonna happen?” her family members asked her. “[Hollywood was] gonna have you starring in the next role made for Julia Roberts?”

According to Ferrera, the realization that Hollywood saw her in a different way than she saw herself made her want to “create more opportunity for little brown girls to fulfill their talent and their dream.”

NEWMARKET FILMS

Since then, the Honduran-American actress has starred in numerous projects that illustrate the diversity of the Latinx experience in America, from “Real Women Have Curves” to “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” to “Ugly Betty“. Most recently, Ferrera dipped her toe into the producing waters with the bilingual Netflix series “Gentified“.

Although Ferrera is putting in the work for more Latinx representation onscreen, the Television Academy still has a long way to go when it comes to recognizing Latinx talent. Unfortunately, the only Latino person nominated for an Emmy this year was Argentine-Mexican actress Alexis Bledel for her work in “The Handmaid’s Tale”.

Here’s to hoping that Latinos like America Ferrera will continue to make their voices heard, giving inspiration to little brown girls everywhere who want nothing more than to see themselves onscreen.

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Zoe Saldana Apologizes For Portraying Nina Simone In 2016 Biopic

Entertainment

Zoe Saldana Apologizes For Portraying Nina Simone In 2016 Biopic

John Minihan / Evening Standard / Frederick M. Brown / Getty Images

Most of our favorites have a biopic highlighting their lives in ways we didn’t know them. In 2016, Nina Simone’s biopic was released with Zoe Saldana portraying her. There was a backlash then but Saldana did the movie anyway. Now, she’s sorry she did.

Zoe Saldana is showing remorse for portraying Nina Simone in a biopic years ago.

“I should have never played Nina,” Saldana says in a live video that has been shared on social media. “I should have done everything in my power with the leverage that I had 10 years ago, which was a different leverage, but it was leverage nonetheless. I should have done everything in my power to cast a black woman to play an exceptionally perfect black woman.”

Saldana continued with her apology by asking someone else to tell Simone’s story.

“She’s one of our giants and someone else should step up,” Saldana says. “Somebody else should tell her story.”

Saldana continues saying that Simone’s story has yet to be told on a large scale and it is a shame that more people have not heard her story, likely because of the biopic drama.

People are questioning Saldana’s motives for apologizing.

Simone’s family pushed back asking Saldana not to take the role in the past. They called her out for taking Simone’s legacy and taking the portrayal for someone who would have been better suited to tell the story.

Specifically, people are calling Saldana out for the colorism that played into her portrayal.

In the apology, Saldana does not mention the colorism that played a role in the backlash. Simone was a dark-skinned woman whose skin was important in her civil rights activism and identity. Saldana also had to wear a prosthetic on her nose to have the same nose as the singer.

While critics feel the same sentiment about Saldana as Simone, they want more from her apology.

Colorism is a very important conversation in the Black community. Saldana’s portrayal of Simone was a keystone moment in that discussion of colorism in the Black community. Many are still angered at Saldana’s portrayal of Simone because of the use of blackface and prosthetic to off-set Saldana’s European looks.

READ: Leave It To Zoe Saldana To Take Something As Dark As Her Character’s Baggage And Turn It Into A Message Of Strength And Redemption

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