Eva Longoria is speaking out about the changes that need to be made in Hollywood. The 44-year-old Grand Hotel producer joined Jay Shetty for the On Purpose podcast where she broke down the important work that needs to be done to better represent Latinos in Hollywood. “Not only are we severely underrepresented in Hollywood but the eraser of Latinos in film is creating the problems we’re having in society,” she shared. “It definitely is correlated. If you only see gangbangers, drug dealers and criminals in TV and film, that educates a community about who we are. It educates people who don’t have a Latino in their town to go “Oh, that’s who they are.’”
The images shown don’t just affect those who aren’t part of the community. According to Eva, it has a direct impact on the younger generation of Latinos. “I think more important than that, it educates our community on who we are. So, if I’m a young Latino and only see those portrayals it’s damaging. You can’t be what you can’t see, and I think there has to be a conscious change.”
Throughout her career, Eva has championed creating roles onscreen and off-screen for Latinos in Hollywood. The Desperate Housewives alum has worked behind the scenes to make sure that positive stories of Latinos are being told.
Earlier this year, Eva was the main producer for the ABC series Grand Hotel. The series was one of the few with an all Latino cast, something that was important when putting the series together. Ahead of the series premiere, Eva opened up about the purpose and importance of the representation on primetime.
“I think this is why we need a show like this—to show a different side to Latinos, and not just what you hear in the news or from this particular administration who is villainizing the word Latino," she told Oprah magazine.. "For me, that makes producing and making Grand Hotel even more urgent."