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Danell Leyva Just Placed In Rio On The Same Event He Lost In London

Earlier this year, Cuban-American gymnast Danell Leyva thought he would experience the Rio Olympics as an alternate. But an injury to fellow American John Orozco before the Olympics resulted in Leyva claiming the spot. Today, Leyva proved why he deserved to be there. The dude totally dominated in his two individual men’s gymnastics events and we couldn’t be prouder.

Danell Leyva’s first finals event was the parallel bars.

Credit: nbcolympics.com

Leyva was the first competitor to take to the parallel bars, setting the bar (?) for the rest of the Olympians battling for the gold.

He was strong, graceful and determined to medal.

Credit: nbcolympics.com

“I’m incredibly honored to be chosen for the team but I’m equally devastated for John having seen how much he’s fought and battled for his spot makes these circumstances even harder,” Leyva said in an Instagram post after Orozco tore his ACL during Olympic Team training.

And with a solid dismount, Leyva secured his place on the podium.

Credit: nbcolympics.com

Leyva took home the silver with a score of 15.900, just behind Ukraine’s Oleg Verniaiev, who scored a 16.041. The bronze medal went to Russia’s David Belyavsky, who scored a competitive 15.783.

Then it was on to the high bar. Leyva had a score to settle after his disappointing loss at the London 2012 Games.

Credit: nbcolympics.com

And, once again, the alternate turned medalist came through.

Leyva delivered a strong and intimidating routine. This time, he was the last of the finalists to compete.

Credit: nbcolympics.com

You could see his coach and stepfather, Yin Alvarez, nervously mimicking Leyva’s routine as if to help in spirit.

There was a small hop on the dismount, but overall, his performance made Germany’s Fabian Hambuechen, the leader, nervous.

Credit: nbcolympics.com

Once the results where final, Leyva ended up with his second silver medal for the U.S. in less than two hours. Leyva scored a respectable 15.500, falling just short of Hambuechen’s 15.766. The bronze was awarded to Great Britain’s Nile Wilson, who scored a 15.466.

Leyva’s coach/stepfather is all of us right now.

Credit: nbcolympics.com

READ: This Tearful Thank You By A Latino Gymnast Will Make You Hug Your Parents

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UCLA’s Star Gymnast Nia Dennis Stuns In Excellently BLACK Floor Routine

Fierce

UCLA’s Star Gymnast Nia Dennis Stuns In Excellently BLACK Floor Routine

UCLA senior Nia Dennis is back with the big tricks again!

The fantastic graduate put on a majestic floor routine over the weekend with a spectacular mashup of music from Black artists. The star gymnast’s exciting and powerful performance reigned in a massive volume of over 8 million views on Twitter.

Nia’s floor routine earned her a near-perfect 9.95 score.

The powerful routine paid tribute to Black Excellence and took only 90 seconds to stun. Featuring mega artists such as Kendrick Lamar, Beyonce, Missy Elliott, Soulja Boy, Megan Thee Stallion, and 2Pac. Speaking about the routine Nia explained to NBC that she really wanted her routine to “shine light on Black culture and bring it into the gymnastics world, and that’s what I feel like I did.”

It’s not the first time Nia’s floor routine has made people lose their ahe ahe breath.

The gymnast from the University of California Los Angeles stole the show last spring in March when she did a performance to Beyoncé’s best hits.

The Beyoncé fan took on songs like “Crazy In Love” and “Ego” during her routine.

During her routine, the college junior mashed up several of Beyoncé’s beloved classics including “Lose My Breath” and “Crazy in Love.” She nailed and hit every spin and flip she set out to do with the confidence of Queen Bey and the perfection of an actual queen. Dennis finished the routine by pantomiming a crown on her head.

In the end, Dennis scored a 9.975 for her routine– which is close to a perfect score.

Naturally, Bey fans were thrilled over the gymnast’s routine and her routine has quickly gone viral.

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Spanish Actor Javier Bardem Will Be Playing Cuban Entertainer Desi Arnaz in a New Movie and Fans Wish Hollywood Cast a Latino Instead

Entertainment

Spanish Actor Javier Bardem Will Be Playing Cuban Entertainer Desi Arnaz in a New Movie and Fans Wish Hollywood Cast a Latino Instead

Images via Getty

Recently, it was announced that Amazon studios will be producing a movie based on the lives of groundbreaking Old Hollywood power couple Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. According to reports, Nicole Kidman is set to play Ball while Spanish actor Javier Bardem will be playing Arnaz.

Seeing as Arnaz is widely viewed as one of the first Latino actors to achieve mainstream success in the United States, this news was positive for many. But for others, the news was less than ideal.

Some critics are lambasting the decision to cast Bardem as Arnaz, seeing that Bardem was born and raised in Spain, and is therefore not Latino.

One disgruntled Twitter user wrote: “I guess it’s really hard to find a Cuban actor so you have to hire a Spaniard…Whitewashing can happen to Latinos too.”

The criticism around Hollywood relying on Spanish actors and actresses to play Latino roles is not a new one. For years, Spanish actors like Antonio Banderas, Penelope Cruz, and Paz Vega have played Latino characters in American movies. The preponderance of this phenomenon have led some people to accuse Hollywood of “white washing” Latino characters by casting Spanish actors.

Antonio Banderas is one of the most famous examples of a Spanish actor who built his career off of playing Latinos.

He has played Latinos for so long that many people think he is, in fact, Latino. But when he was erroneously called a “person of color” by American publications when he was nominated for an Oscar in 2020, there was quiet the outcry in Spain.

Spanish publications condemned American media for having an “absurd obsession” with race, and not understanding that Spaniards are, in fact, white.

Publications wrote arguments like: “Banderas might pass as a Latino ‘person of color,’ to an Arkansas farmer, great-grandson of Germans, but never to a California delivery man born to Guatemalan immigrants.”

To some observers, it seems that Hollywood prefers casting Europeans as Latinos because Hollywood sees Europe as more “sophisticated” than Latinidad.

25-year-old Spaniard Juan Pedro Sánchez, summed up the problem on Twitter, saying: “A lot of people in Spain are bothered if others confuse them for Latin American because Spaniards see Latinos as people of color, and they don’t want to be associated with that.”

He went on to say: “What bothers me is not being considered a person of color, but that people ignore that Spain was a colonizer country. It erases that history.”

The bottom line is, fans are frustrated that Hollywood keeps looking to European actors to cast Latin American characters.

Study after study shows that there is still a stubborn lack of representation for Latinos onscreen. And when there is finally a role that puts a Latino character front and center, Hollywood prefers to hire a European actor over a Latino one.

Javier Bardem is an exceptionally talented actor and there’s no doubt that he will tackle the role of Desi Arnaz with creativity and dedication–but fans’ frustrations at the casting choice doesn’t have to do with Bardem’s acting capabilities. It has to do with the all of the ways that Latinos are discounted–including professionally.

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