America Ferrera: “We Can Write A New Mandate for Latinos”

Superstore BELatina Latinx America Ferrera
SUPERSTORE -- "Angels and Mermaids" Episode 311 -- Pictured: America Ferrera as Amy -- (Photo by: Adam Rose/NBC)

After surprising fans with the sudden announcement of her departure from NBC’s “Superstore,” Latin American actress America Ferrera has decided to start “the next chapter” in her career.

“The last five years on ‘Superstore’ have been some of the most rewarding, enriching and enjoyable years of my career,” Ferrera said in a statement obtained by CNN. “Producing, directing and acting with this wonderful cast and crew has given me opportunities to grow as a person and storyteller. I’m so grateful to my partners at NBC and Universal Television for the support and belief they have always placed in the show, and I’m most thankful to the brilliant Justin Spitzer for creating the funny, smart and relevant world of ‘Superstore’ and inviting me to be a part of it.”

The actress of Honduran descent has become one of the most powerful Latino voices in the television industry, with a career that dates back to 2002, but that took off with her lead role as Betty Suarez in ABC’s comedy drama Ugly Betty.

With honors such as a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress, the Screen Actors Guild Award, and an Emmy Award, Ferrera has now been honored for her role as producer and writer in the new generation of television content representing the Hispanic community in the United States.

Since 2015, the actress has starred as Amy on the NBC sitcom Superstore, where she has also worked as a co-producer, and which, according to CNN, “averages 3.8 million viewers per week, a number that accounts for seven days of delayed viewing.”

Similarly, and according to NBC, Superstore is among “one of the network’s strongest digital performers.” However, Ferrera believes it’s time to turn the page.

“We are living in an era brought upon by many, many generations of Latino and Latina actors, producers, writers, directors, who stayed the course, and they paved the path,” she said last Friday during the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s 2020 Impact Awards. “Sometimes they did it all alone. Sometimes they went completely unseen, unrecognized, uncelebrated, and sometimes, they never got to see their visions and their talents meet with opportunities that they deserved.”

The actress now plans “to create a pipeline for Latino stories to be seen and celebrated,” according to Deadline, in conjunction with “allies” in the Latino community, whom Ferrera recognized for their ability “to see the value of our lives, of our stories.”

“If you empower us, we will deliver beautiful content and voracious audiences,” she added.

During last Friday’s gala, Ferrera was honored with the outstanding series producer prize, which she thanked by recognizing the generations of Latino artists who laid the foundation for successful careers like hers, including her “personal hero” Lupe Ontiveros, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

“For a very long time I felt very isolated and alone as a Latina in this industry, I know many of us in this room have felt that way,” she said. “But we can write a new mandate for Latinos in this industry.”