The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences launched an interview series dedicated to Latino cinema on Monday. “Seen” reviews the careers of stars such as Eva Longoria, John Leguizamo, and Edward James Olmos.
The interview series is directed by Argentine-American filmmaker Nick Barili and is available on the Academy’s website, and YouTube channel, the institution said in a statement.
As reported by the Los Angeles Times, the first episode visits the home of Colombian John Leguizamo in New York. It reviews the evolution of Latinos in U.S. show business, as well as the stereotypes the actor had to face in his early days.
The conversation with Leguizamo covers tokenism, colorism, and the work that remains to be done for the fair representation of Latinos in film.
Other episodes will be devoted to the likes of Edward James Olmos, who leads several educational initiatives in Los Angeles, and Eva Longoria, who will take audiences to California State University, Northridge, where she received a master’s degree in Chicano Studies in 2013.
“What a dream to host a series celebrating our community leaders like John Leguizamo, Eva Longoria, and Edward James Olmos by giving them the recognition they deserve. Not only for trailblazing with their careers but also for using their platforms to be a voice for our community. I look forward to sharing their journeys, their passions, and their legacy with the world,” Barili told Deadline.
“This is a step in the right direction to address the lack of representation in Hollywood, but we still have a lot of work to do,” he added.
Director Nick Barili is co-founder of the Latinx in Media & Arts Coalition (LIMA), which focuses on promoting Latino creatives, increasing access to traditional and new media platforms, providing resources and opportunities to young people, and cultivating the next generation of Latino entertainment and creative professionals.
Barili is also the founder of Hard Knock TV, the first hip-hop channel on YouTube, which has garnered more than 100 million views and 285,000 subscribers, Broadway World explained.