×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Coco’ Takes Top Honors at Imagen Awards, Film’s Star Talks Sequel Possibilities

While the theme song for “Coco” may be “Remember Me,” the outpouring of love for the Pixar film was certainly hard to forget at the 33rd annual Imagen Awards held at the JW Marriott in Downtown Los Angeles.

“‘Coco’ was just so beautifully conceived, I loved it. And wasn’t that abuela marvelous? With that enormous head of hers,” Rita Moreno, who was nominated for her work on “One Day at a Time,” said of the film that took home the awards for creative achievement, best picture, and best director on Saturday.

Character designer on the film Alonso Martinez noted that “We began ‘Coco’ with a simple thing: a love note to Mexico, for all the beauty of the people, the traditions, and the depth of love that is inside Mexico.”

Anthony Gonzalez, who voiced young guitar-strummer Miguel in the film, shared his hopes that the story of “Coco” will continue on now that Miguel can openly embrace his musical proclivities — whether that be a stage show, a live-action adaptation, or a sequel.

“If there was a chance, I would love to. I hope there’s a sequel even if I’m not in it. I’d just love to see more about Miguel — what he’s up to, what he’s doing. I want to know about his relationship with his new baby sister,” Gonzalez said.

Later on in the evening, Gonzalez performed a heartfelt rendition of “Remember Me” with Trio Ellas, leaving not a dry eye in the ballroom.

The ceremony, founded by Norman Lear, seeks to encourage and recognize positive portrayals of Latinos in the media, and Moreno explained how she’s glad Hollywood is finally waking up and realizing cultural touchstone films like “Coco,” “Crazy Rich Asians,” and “Black Panther” are giving audiences the chance to see themselves onscreen.

“We could’ve told everybody a zillion years ago. And we have been. It’s just now they’re listening because they’re seeing the green bags,” she told Variety.

During her speech for best comedy primetime program, “One Day at a Time” co-showrunner Gloria Calderon Kellett cited the importance of creating positive portrayals of the Latinx community especially in “times like these,” praising those in attendance at Imagen who are “making content that is not only representing people that desperately need to be represented, but it’s changing the way people view us.”

Peter Murrieta, who was distinguished with the Norman Lear writing award, recalled how novel it was for Disney to embrace telling Selena Gomez breakout series “Wizards of Waverly Place” from the vantage point of a Mexican-American family. “The original show was called ‘The Amazing O’Malleys,'” Murrieta said. “And I wasn’t sure that I wanted to do Disney Channel. But I was amazed they ended up letting me do a show that resembled my family, which is half and half.”

Throughout the evening, honorees like Jenna Ortega for “Stuck in the Middle,” Stephanie Beatriz for “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” and Gina Torres for “Suits” also acknowledged that their parts originally were not written with Latinas in mind.

“My part wasn’t written for a woman, much less a Latina woman. It was written for a 60-year-old white man,” Torres said during her acceptance speech for best TV supporting actress. She and Beatriz tied for the award for the first tie in Imagen’s history. “For seven seasons I have been honored to color ’em up.”

“Grown-ish” star Francia Raisa shared her optimism that Latinx portrayals are looking up, especially in light of auditioning for Steven Spielberg’s upcoming remake of “West Side Story.”

“I really appreciate that he’s sticking to Latin people telling the story,” she said. “He literally is looking for people that do speak Spanish, not someone that has a Spanish last name. He’s looking for, do you speak Spanish, can you sing, [and] can you dance. It would be a dream if I could be a part of it.”

Moreno, original cast member and Oscar winner for her role as “Anita” in Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise’s 1961 version of the musical, says she is “very curious to know what’s going to happen.”

She has not received a call from Spielberg yet to appear in the film, but is unsure what role that could possibly be. “There’s nothing in there for a woman my age.”

But she does commend Spielberg’s casting efforts to find Latino actors for Latino-specific roles. “Well, why not?” she asks. “I wish him luck, and I hope it works. The music is certainly gorgeous. I don’t know what they’re doing about the dances or the choreography.”

Additional big winners for the evening were “The Long Road Home,” which won best primetime program – specials, movies & mini-series, best supporting actor – television for Jorge Diaz, best actor – television for E.J. Bonilla, and “Station 19,” which won best primetime program – drama.

“Station 19” creator Stacy McKee kicked off her speech in shock: “I can’t believe I’m standing up here. We’ve had 10 episodes. This is nuts.”

More Scene

  • Billy Eichner Power of Pride Variety

    Billy Eichner on Taylor Swift's 'Calm Down' Backlash

    When Taylor Swift released her “You Need to Calm Down” music video, it seemed like every member of the LGBTQ in Hollywood was included — except for Billy Eichner. “I’m still not gay enough for Taylor Swift — or too gay — I don’t know what it is,” Eichner joked at Variety’s Power of Pride [...]

  • Bebe Rexha

    Mumford and Sons, Sting, Ciara, Bebe Rexha Light Up Cannes Lions

    There was no shortage of excellent music at the 2019 edition of Cannes Lion. The international gathering of creatives drew top music brands – among them: Spotify, Live Nation, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM/Pandora, VEVO and Universal Music Group – and a slew of well-known acts to stages across the Croissette, to villas above the city and onto [...]

  • Patrick Wilson

    Patrick Wilson, Mckenna Grace on Scary Stories From 'Annabelle Comes Home' Set

    Tales of spooky occurrences on the sets of horror movies like “The Exorcist” and “Poltergeist” have circulated for years, and it looks like “The Conjuring” franchise is following in their footsteps in that regard. The cast of “Annabelle Comes Home” shared their unnerving stories from set at the film’s premiere on Thursday night at the Regency [...]

  • Donald Trump Chucky Childs Play

    'Child's Play' Stars on New Chucky's 'Creepy' Resemblance to Donald Trump

    At Wednesday night’s world premiere of the “Child’s Play” remake, it was obvious that evil doll Chucky — the star of seven films over three decades — had a little work done. And now he bears a striking resemblance to Donald Trump. “Oh, you caught that?” Aubrey Plaza asked Variety on the black carpet outside [...]

  • Cara Delevingne attends The Trevor Project's

    Cara Delevingne Recalls Producers Saying That Being Queer Will Hurt Her Career

    Hollywood may be celebrating LGBTQ Pride Month with displays of the rainbow flag and lots of talk about supporting diversity and inclusion, but Cara Delevingne says there’s still work to be done. “Behind closed doors, we are still being told, as I have, by powerful Hollywood producers that we can’t make it if we’re queer,” [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content