If you look across the new and continuing TV series on ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC‘«Űin the cast, on the crew, in arcs or as guest stars‘«Űyou can see one happy fact: there are many Latinos in front and behind the camera, in more than thirty shows; more than ever before. At the same time, you can see something that's equally unhappy: there's not a single program anywhere in sight that has a Latino as "Latino" in the starring role, or that focuses on Latino family or culture. Not a one.
But that may be about to change. We've already talked about a few shows already in the works, but now NBC has made it unanimous: all four networks now have at least one program with a Latino character in the lead role, centering on Latino culture in one form or another.
The latest arrival: NBC has just announced that director/choreographer Kenny Ortega ("High School Musical," "the remake of Dirty Dancing") and writer Ligiah Villalobos ("Under The Same Moon," "Go Diego Go") are working with them to develop an as-yet-untitled project about a Latino family that runs a Latin dance studio in Miami. (The producer of the project, Steve Stark, was also producer of NBC's "The Event," which featured a Cuban-American President, and is producer of USA Network's "Fairly Legal" with Sarah Shahi).
Meanwhile, Silvio Horta, creator of "Ugly Betty"‘«Űthe last successful "Latin-centric" series on network TV‘«Űis working with exec producer Jennifer Lopez and FOX on a dramedy about an entirely different Latino family in Miami. (Could the popularity of Miami have as much to do with the cheap and plentiful production facilities in Florida, as it has to do with a new fascination with Cubans? Good question.)