ABC continues its ambitious plans to embrace the Latino market, and Eva Longoria remains at the forefront. This time, "Deadline Hollywood" reports that Longoria's stepping up to be executive producer for an English-language version of Univision's very popular telenovela, "Soy Tu Due??a." The drama "centers on a Texas heiress who loses her fortune and is forced to move back to the ranch where she grew up." Longoria's involvementÔÇôas the most visible Latina in the ABC 'family'ÔÇôis interesting; equally important is the inclusion of a Latino writer and showrunner in Jorge Zamacona.
The title of the project is interesting in itself. Though it literally translates to "I Am Your Owner," its meaning is something closer to "Woman of Steel," and the premise seems to present the main character as a strong woman fallen on hard times who returns to her roots and is the better for it. This is a far cry from the other telenovela adaptation that ABC seems to be developing with "Desperate Housewives'" Marc Cherry, "Devious Maids," which is already ginned up some serious criticism about its presentation of Latinas as stereotypical servants for rich white people who are, by definition, dishonest. (Hard to see Longoria getting on board for a concept like that; "Woman of Steel" seems a lot more appropriate.)
Many have noted, if only in passing, that some Univision primetime programming has actually out-performed English language network shows in recent months, especially in the always-desirable 18-49 demographic. "Soy Tu Due??a" is one of those shows, where it has often appeared in the Top 10 for shows in any language, and even in the Top 5 with the golden 18-34 demo.
It's a little early to start talking casting and celebrating premieres, but it does show that the trend towards development of Latino properties, themes, and culture on the English-language network is getting to be a pretty big thing. Finally.