Inside the LatinX TV Explosion, From ‘Narcos: Mexico’ to ‘One Day at a Time’

TheWrap Emmy magazine: ”One thing is for sure: Things need to change,“ Justina Machado says

A version of this feature about Latinx TV first appeared in the Drama/Comedy/Actors issue of TheWrap’s Emmy magazine.

In our last Emmy issue, Stolen by My Mother star Niecy Nash commented, “The world is bigger than just Black and white people, you know what I mean? There is a whole group of people who are being underrepresented.”
The Latin and Hispanic experience has certainly been underrepresented on American television and at the Emmys over the years. Yes, Puerto Rican actor Jose Ferrer was nominated at the third Emmys in 1950, and “I Love Lucy,” executive produced by Cuban-born Desi Arnaz, won in 1952 and ’53. But overall, the embrace was so half-hearted that Rita Moreno was the first Latinx nominee in five different categories.

Moreno, who at age 88 is still in the Emmy conversation thanks to her role in Norman Lear’s “One Day at a Time” reboot, is one of the performers and creators we’ve talked to for this special section, which comes as Pedro Pascal and Diego Luna head up two different Star Wars spinoffs on Disney+, “The Mandalorian” and the upcoming “Rogue One” prequel series. That might be a sign of real progress in diversity — but as “One Day at a Time” star Justina Machado said, “We in Hollywood cannot say that we believe in all of those things and then not show it on screen.”

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