Comedian, writer and kick-ass Oscars host Tina Fey was a guest on the frenetic TV show Billy on the Street. Host Billy Eichner, known for running around NYC asking strangers rapid-fire questions, slowed things down (a little) and had Fey play a game called “LaTina Fey.” Eichner asked Fey to pretend she was giving an Oscars speech and “thank” 20 Latino performers in just 60 seconds. How did she do?
Yeah, Fey’s first response was actually “Um, the woman from Jane the Virgin!”
When the original “Men In Black” premiered in 1997, there’s no denying it was a mega box office hit. In fact, we’re a bit more surprised that it took this long for there to be another installation to the franchise. Now, 22 years later, the new version, fittingly titled, “Men In Black: International” the film is more inclusive, which is certainly appreciated in this day and age.
It’s because of this diverse representation that Latinas can see themselves on the big screen.
Last week, during the “Men In Black” premiere Tessa Thompson spotted a little girl who was dressed just like her in the movie.
Thompson recounted the moment on Instagram and discussed how much she’s been through with the filming of the movie and doing press all over the world. She said it was this moment that meant so much to her.
“These past couple weeks have been almost a blur— except, my favorite moment of all— meeting the one person I really made @meninblack for. Hers was the first face I saw when I arrived to the premiere— and it’s still on my mind. And what she said to me, I’ll never forget.”
This moment really signifies why representation matters so much.
People seem to forget how many others are excluded when we see a movie or TV show, so when you see a person that looks like you starring in a massive project, it’s an encouraging thing that means to so many. Now we’re wondering what that little girl said to her. Please tell us, Tessa!
Thompson’s role in the new “Men In Black” also came with a couple of changes including something she didn’t want to say just because Will Smith said it in the original.
Thompson said in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter that she didn’t want the new movie to be too much like the old one, which makes sense especially because this is 2019! We don’t need to regress to 1997.
In the original movie, Smith says “I make this look good” after he first puts on his suit. Thompson said she would never say that line.
“I wouldn’t have said it. In fact, I think someone did ask me to — just as an option — and I said no. M [her character] is just different from that character [Agent J/Smith]. Yeah, I was really conscious of too much nostalgia. Also, inside of that, there were moments when I thought, ‘Let’s lean in.'”
Yes!! That is why we need more women of color in movies!
We see celebrities all the time at the airport. Sometimes they’re noteworthy (Edward James Olmos, Rosario Dawson), sometimes they’re yawners (Gérard Depardieu), but imagine seeing one half of Outkast at your gate. Wouldn’t you freak out? That’s exactly what happened to a New York-based journalist.
Antonia Cereijido, a producer for NPR’s Latino USA podcast, was casually waiting for her flight at the Los Angeles Airport when she spotted André 3000.
The sighting almost wasn’t meant to be. Cerejido explained that she had missed her first flight.
“The crazy thing is I was supposed to take a flight at 11:15 the night before,” she told Slate in an interview, “but there were 50 minutes of traffic at the airport, so I missed my flight. I was very upset. I had to buy flights for the next day, and I was annoyed. I arrived super early, like, “I’m not going to miss my second flight.”
When she realized it was him, she — as any smart person would do — asked to take a picture with him.
“Well, I think I said, ‘I’m a big fan of yours,’ and then because my friend had said, ‘That’s not a flute,’ I asked, ‘What instrument is that?’ and he said, ‘Oh, it’s a flute. It’s an indigenous double flute.’ Then I asked to take a photo. I was sort of starstruck. I took the photo, and I went away as quickly as possible before I said anything and I sat down. Then we all boarded the plane, and I uploaded the post on Instagram and on Twitter. I saw that it was popular because it was probably only up for 10 minutes and it had 600 likes.”
Yeah, her tweet was popular. It’s gotten more than 50K retweets.
“I had one tweet before get kind of popular,” she told Slate. “It was, like, a thousand likes, so I was excited. Then I turned my phone off. And then, when we landed six hours later, it had 68,000 likes. And actually, my first feeling was dread. I felt kind of bad, like, what if I’m outing—what if this is what he does, he goes to places and plays the flute and kind of stays low-key? Because it wasn’t like he was asking for a lot of attention—he was doing his own thing. And I could tell that he saw I was staring at him when he was going back-and-forth, but it wasn’t like he was mad at the attention. He was just sort of neutral.”
But, about that indigenous flute.
People on social media actually questioned her about her flute knowledge, but she got the response directly from André and the makers.
“I just got off the phone with Guillermo Martinez the man who made Andres’s beautiful flute, she tweeted. “It’s a Mayan double flute. He and his shop are doing incredible work by keeping the music if indigenous North American communities alive. Here is his website: https://www.quetzalcoatlmusic.org/ “
The best part about the story is how Outkast is part of her family history.
“My family is originally from Argentina, and when we first moved from New York to San Diego, it was so different from my experience up until then that my family became really close,” she told Slate. “And there were two things we listened to all the time: the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Outkast. And we became obsessed with the Speakerboxxx/The Love Below album. My mom had a dream that André 3000 taught us the “Hey Ya!” dance. I always remembered that, because it was such a funny thing for my mom to say. And so I have this very fond feeling about him, and he lived up to that. My mom dreamed that he would be nice and teach us something, and that happened to me in real life, which is so crazy.”