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Films, Videos ♦ December 18, 2022

Check out the first teaser trailer for the upcoming movie Barbie! America doesn’t appear in this teaser, but it’s great to see some scenes from the film before the July 2023 release date!

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Interviews, Magazines ♦ November 11, 2022

With the impending arrival of midterm elections, who better to preach than the voice of America herself, America Ferrera? Known for her highly acclaimed role as Betty Suarez in Ugly Betty, Ferrera claims awards as the first Latina to win a Primetime Emmy in the category for Best Actress, as well as an Emmy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Screen Actors Guild Award. Named in the top 100 most influential people of all time, the multi-hyphenate actress opts for an agenda to re-examine voter narratives and hearten civic engagement, particularly within the Latinx and Indigenous communities.

In efforts to reframe how people perceive their position in the electoral system, Ferrera underlines a mirror of approaches necessary to paint a picture for Latina communities. What is the 50-year plan? How does the community gain political power and cultural agency – in the long term?

Climate and voting activist, Saad Amer sits down with Ferrera to discuss voter engagement, Harness, and overall threats to democracy.

Saad Amer: Right now, America is under attack. You literally are America, and you took this personally, you know. *laughs* Why do you feel such a strong need not only to vote but to organize and get out the vote?

America Ferrera: I have a lot of my own criticisms about our elections, but I think it’s so important that we continue to show up and remind ourselves and each other that we have to engage with the system that exists; otherwise we are at risk of losing our democracy. We are living the reality that elections have consequences, and they have consequences for a lot longer than any one person holds office. We can’t afford to sit out elections that impact the lives of people who aren’t even born yet.

SA: You were just recently in Texas, and given that it’s a swing state, it could be Democratic or Republican in the midterms right now, depending on turnout and what the people of Texas vote towards. What were you doing there, and what did you want to say to the people of Texas?

AF: I think Texas is important for the entire country. Texas has set awful precedents in terms of gun control, gun safety, women’s rights, and protecting LGBTQIA+ youth. We need voters in Texas to show up and have their voices heard and ensure that Texas is actually being represented the way they want to be represented. There are strong forces working to disenfranchise Texas voters. I’m heading back to Texas this weekend. I’m going to San Antonio to do a really awesome, fun event called Quince to the Poles.

SA: That’s awesome. Is it like a party to the polls?

AF: It’s a party to the polls but very specific to a certain community. An organization I co-founded with my husband [Ryan Piers Williams] and Wilmer Valderrama called Harness has worked with many frontline organizers and artists on civic engagement. One of our team members, Allie Young, this extraordinary young organizer, did this in the midterm elections with indigenous people who rode their horses from their reservations. She was engaging with her indigenous community in a way that spoke to them, their history, their ancestors, their relationship, voting, and why they do it.

SA: Why do you think that storytelling is such a crucial component to how we view these different communities, and why do you personally spend so much time—as an actress—doing the work to change these conversations?

AF: If we want people to buy in, we have to win their hearts and minds. That is about painting a new picture, telling a different kind of story about who we are, who they are, what their place in this country is, and what their place in this electoral system is. We have to really interrogate which narratives and stories are winning and dominating in our culture and our country. We have to be very real about who’s doing the best storytelling and who’s really winning hearts and minds.

SA: I’m curious if there are any instances–you have a whole portfolio, a whole reel of all of these different roles that you’ve played– where there were stereotypes that you felt like ‘this is such a narrow way to understand my community or some other community.’

AF: I will say that the one thing I did that was really about breaking things down was in 2020, I took to my Instagram and did a little series in a moment called ‘America AF,’ and it was just me in front of my phone talking about voting and elections in the most simple and basic terms so that we can understand that actually not that hard to understand. It has been made complicated and hard to understand on purpose by people in positions of power who would like for us to be too intimidated to engage or too exhausted by it to engage.

SA: We’ve seen recently, with the decision of Roe v. Wade, how women’s bodily autonomy is now coming up for question, and I know you’ve been very vocal about this issue. Why do you think that this is such a critical issue in this election cycle?

AF: It just strikes to the core of, who are we? What do we believe? Do we believe that women are full humans or not? Are we created equal or not? You cannot have a free and fair country when more than half of the population doesn’t have the right to control their own bodies. It’s unconscionable; it’s hypocrisy; it’s completely devoid of any integrity. It’s a threat to democracy in and of itself and to the very ideas that this country was founded on.

Source: V Magazine

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News ♦ November 03, 2022

As part of a battle for young Latino voters in Texas, activists have turned to sponsoring quinceañeras, both in Austin and across the state.

Driving the news: Actress and activist America Ferrera recently hosted a quinceañera-themed event in San Antonio with hundreds of people showing up for a parade to a voting center to encourage civic engagement ahead of the Nov. 8 elections.

Why it matters: Pew Research Center estimates 6.2 million Hispanic people in Texas are eligible to vote, making the state home to the second-largest Hispanic voter population, behind California.

Context: Quinceañeras, or 15th birthday celebrations, are a monumental rite of passage for young women in Latino culture.

What happened: Harness, a nonprofit co-founded by Ferrera, and Austin-based Jolt Action, which describes itself as the “the largest Latino progressive organization in Texas,” organized the symbolic “Ride to the Polls” activation.

  • The event featured about a dozen debutantes, lowriders and a mini festival with voting information.
  • Young women in sparkling debutante gowns encircled “La Veladora of Our Lady of Guadalupe,” a ceramic mosaic by Jesse Treviño, to kick things off.
  • Eulogia Rodriguez, 14, participated in the event and said civic engagement isn’t “popular” in her community but she wants to be part of the change by sharing voting information.
  • At her upcoming birthday, Rodriguez will give a speech centered on civic engagement. Jolt, which provides a free photo booth, will also register guests to vote at her celebration.

What they’re saying: Pacita Rudder, programs manager at Harness, told Axios the civic engagement group hopes the cultural relevance of the activation reaches Latinos throughout the U.S. and combats apathy tied to the electoral process.

  • “We know that a lot of times the young folks in families are actually the ones that are pushing their older family members and relatives to make change, so having them speak up about voting is a really powerful moment,” Rudder said.
  • Ferrera noted the teens involved in the event aren’t old enough to vote, but believes the “power and strength” of their early engagement motivates their family and friends to participate.
  • “Our voices are worthy of being in the rooms where decisions are being made,” Ferrera said.

By the numbers: Jolt has held 17 Poder Quince events around the state, including one in Austin — with another scheduled for later this year.

  • Jolt registered more than 13,600 voters this year.
  • As part of its get-out-the-vote efforts, the organization has sent out more than 55,000 mailers and more than 19,500 texts.

NextGen, an organization that targets young, likely progressive voters, told Axios a year ago that it aimed to register 150,000 individuals this election cycle — but a spokesperson declined this week to release to Axios its registration figures until after the election.

Meanwhile: Gov. Greg Abbott has been running ads emphasizing his Hispanic connections — one ad features his wife, who is Hispanic; another features a niece, who calls him Tío Greg.

  • This week, Abbott, who has vowed to win the Latino vote, was in Laredo, appearing at the Republican National Committee’s Hispanic Community Center.
  • Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke has been conducting rallies in Spanish, campaigning in South Texas and appearing with luminaries like Dolores Huerta and Lin-Manuel Miranda.

What’s next: Friday is the final day of early voting in Texas. Election Day is Nov. 8.

Source: Axios

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Interviews, Videos ♦ October 28, 2022

Emmy-winning actress America Ferrera discusses her career, representation in Hollywood and the work she’s doing to get out the Latino vote.

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Films, News ♦ October 21, 2022

America Ferrera is set to join the A-list ensemble of Sony and Black Bear Pictures’ upcoming dramedy Dumb Money. She joins Paul Dano, Seth Rogen, Sebastian Stan, Shailene Woodley, Anthony Ramos, Vincent D’Onofrio, Dane DeHaan and Pete Davidson, with Craig Gillespie directing.

The pic based on Ben Mezrich’s book The Antisocial Network tells the story of fortunes won and lost overnight in the David-vs.-Goliath GameStop short squeeze that may have ended up changing Wall Street forever. It offers a gripping portrayal of how a loosely affiliated group of private investors and internet trolls on a subreddit called WallStreetBets took down one of the biggest hedge funds on Wall Street, firing the first shot in a revolution that threatened to upend the establishment.

The script adapted by Rebecca Angelo & Lauren Schuker Blum. Ryder Picture Company’s Aaron Ryder, Black Bear’s Teddy Schwarzman and Gillespie will produce. Principal photography is underway.

Sony recently swooped in to land distribution rights after the film was announced at this year’s Toronto Film Festival. Sony also holds Latin America, Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, South Africa, India and select Asian rights.

Executive producers include Michael Heimler, John Friedberg, Andrew Swett, Angelo, Schuker Blum, Mezrich, Johnny Holland, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss and Kevin Ulrich. Black Bear Pictures is fully financing, with Black Bear International handling foreign distribution rights after launching sales at Toronto.

Ferrera can be seen next year in Greta Gerwig’s Barbie alongside Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Will Ferrell, Simu Liu and Kate McKinnon. She recently starred on the Apple TV+ series WeCrashed opposite Jared Leto and Anne Hathaway. She is making her feature directorial debut with an adaptation of Erika Sánchez’s New York Times bestselling novel  I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter for Netflix.

She is repped by CAA and Peikoff Mahan.

Source: Deadline

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Interviews, Videos ♦ October 06, 2022

America Ferrera and Yonas Kibreab discuss their roles in Elio, the upcoming film from Pixar.

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News ♦ October 06, 2022

In recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month, Poderistas is hosted “Poderistas @ the White House” to bring together Latina leaders to meet with senior White House and Biden Administration officials.

Founded by Eva Longoria and America Ferrera during the 2020 election cycle, Poderistas is a digital community built to celebrate Latina culture and harness Latina power in all aspects of life, including at the ballot box.

The October 5 event was a monumental moment for the Latina community, with over 40 Latinas convening at the White House, including leaders from the entertainment industry, community activists, hometown heroes from across the country, philanthropists, and more.

Attendees included authors, activists, and actresses such as Poderistas Co-Founder America Ferrera, Chloe Bridges, Robin Arzón, Justina Machado, Anjelah Johnson-Reyes, and many more.

Over the day, they discussed various critical topics, including the economy, community leadership, health care, education, climate change, sustainable communities, and Latina glass ceiling breakers.

Source: Hola

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