Last night was the annual National Hispanic Media Coalition Gala, and it was full of powerful, courageous Latinx members in the media. It was held at The Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles, California, and sponsored by companies, such as: WarnerMedia, Univision, Southwest, T-Mobile, NBCUniversal, and more. The reception started at 6 pm, and following that, was when the awards ceremony commenced.
The ceremony was co-hosted by American actress, Justina Machado, and Mexican-American actor, Jacob Vargas. Their on stage chemistry was incredible. They cracked jokes, finished each other’s sentences, and they provided a light hearted night to remember.
The nominees that were honored were: Lin Manuel Miranda’s upcoming film, In The Heights, America Ferrera, Isabella Gomez, Jay Hernandez, Dany Garcia, Ozzie Areu, and Freeform’s Party of Five.
Honduran-American actress and producer, America Ferrera, won the Outstanding Series Producer Impact Award. She produced, directed, and starred in NBC’s hit comedy show, Superstore, playing the role of Amy. However, it’s been announced that she will unfortunately be leaving the show, after five years on the team. Her speech at the awards show was incredible, as she declared that the Latinx community is growing stronger than ever, and that members of the community “no longer have to scramble and compete with one another for a poultry slice of a pie. Instead, we’ll be serving up a whole bunch of tres leches.”
In The Heights, a Lin Manuel Miranda adaptation film, won a Visionary Impact award. Ann Sarnoff, the CEO of Warner Brothers, accepted it on behalf of the cast. In The Heights releases in theaters on June 26th, and follows a group of Latinos, living their lives in the New York City area of Washington Heights.
The Outstanding Series Performance Impact Award was presented to none other than Isabella Gomez — Elena Alvarez in Netflix’s remake of One Day At A Time. While Gomez is Colombian-American, Elena is Cuban-American. In the Netflix series, Gomez portrays a very relatable teenage girl, who goes through challenges with self-discovery, family issues, and her Cuban heritage. Gomez’ acting is, indeed, outstanding; so, that award was certainly meant for her. Catch Isabella Gomez in the next season of One Day At A Time, streaming on PopTV later this year.
Ozzie Areu won the Trailblazer Impact Award, for making history in the Latin community. Areu is the first Latino to own a major Hollywood studio. He owns Areu Bro. Studios, and according to an article by NBC, his goal with this studio is to provide more jobs in media for people of color. Areu Bro’s. Studios is currently located in Atlanta, Georgia.
Nicaraguan-American producer/writer, Roberto Aguirre Sacasa, won the Outstanding Executive Producer Impact Award. Sacasa is famously known for his producing/screenwriting credits on hit tv shows, such as: Riverdale, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, and Katy Keene, just to name a few. He certainly is a prime example that no matter what ethnicity you are, hard work and dedication will get you to where you want to be. Sacasa continues to be such a positive reflection on the Latinx community.
Executive producer, Amy Lippman, accepted the Outstanding Television Impact Award on behalf of ongoing television series, Party of Five. The show revolves around five kids that watched helplessly, as their hardworking, undocumented parents got sent back to their home country by ICE. Now, they must face life challenges and obstacles on their own, without their parents being there to guide them. It’s heartbreaking and emotional, but it brings awareness to issues that undocumented immigrants have had to face in America. You can watch the episodes on Freeform on Wednesdays at 9/8c, or you can catch up with all of the episodes by downloading the Freeform app, or by watching on Hulu.
Cuban-America producer, Dany Garcia, was given an Impact Award for Outstanding Film Producer. She has 30+ credits on a variety of well known films, such as Baywatch, Jumanji, Rampage, and more. She co-founded Seven Bucks Productions with well known actor, Dwayne The Rock Johnson. Garcia also manages “The Rock”.
Finally, Mexican-American actor, Jay Hernandez, was awarded for Outstanding Television Performance. Hernandez has partaken in many different roles over the years; his most recent, being Thomas Magnum on the 2018 remake of Magnum P.I. on CBS.
Congratulations to all of the honorees for contributing to Latinx history in the entertainment industry. Your talents and hard work are truly appreciated.