Camila Maria Concepción, a trans Latina writer, actor and activist who worked on the Netflix series “Gentefied” and “Daybreak,” died last week by suicide, her representative confirmed to Variety. She was 28.
She was most recently a staff writer on the zombie series, and served as a writers’ assistant on “Gentefied,” the recently-premiered bilingual show about three Mexican American cousins and their struggle to chase the American dream.
“We are heartbroken by the loss of Camila Concepción,” the “Gentefied” team said in a statement. “She was hired as our writers’ assistant on ‘Gentefied,’ but quickly made her way into our hearts as a sister, writer and friend. She co-wrote episode 109 ‘Protest Tacos,’ and we were so blown away by her amazing talent and unique voice. She was definitely a force to be reckoned with and we are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our brightest stars.”
Concepción, who was from the Inland Empire, came up in the biz under Jill Soloway, and worked closely with the “Transparent” creator to advance the 50/50 by 2020 initiative, which is campaigning for gender parity in the industry. Prior to pursuing a career in entertainment, she studied English literature at Yale University.
In a statement, Netflix described her as a “talented writer with a passion for storytelling, lifting up underrepresented voices, and fighting for representation in front of and behind the camera.”
“We are deeply saddened to learn of the tragic passing of Camila Concepción,” read the streamer’s statement. “She made bold and critical contributions to our industry, most recently through her incredible writing on Gentefied, and her legacy will live on through her work. Our thoughts are with her family and friends in this time of loss. “
Concepción was represented by UTA, who said “she was a fierce advocate for all she believed in and was taken away from us way too soon.”
“Camila was a one of a kind soul and we were so lucky to have worked with her,” the agency said. “She had many stories left to tell and we will continue to work on her behalf to ensure that those stories are shared with the
Many who worked with Concepción have taken to social media to pay tribute to her. “Gentefied” co-creators Marvin Lemus and Linda Yvette Chávez shared their memories of her, and their disbelief at the news.
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Camila, mi amor, I can't seem to write these words without bursting into tears. I can't believe I'm writing these words at all. Because you're supposed to be here, Camila. You were supposed to be there Thursday and you weren't. And I texted you because I was worried. Because you were missing. A big part of this dream was missing and i should have known… I should have listened to that voice inside that said something was wrong… My love, you were brilliant. You were powerful. You were a creator Marvin and I were ready to champion to the ends of the earth. The first time you sat in that room with us a year and a half ago you were magnetic. You told story like you were spinning cotton candy. The sweetness enveloping the jagged edges of a woman looking to heal. My girl from El Monte who went to Yale who loved her girl from Norwalk who went to Stanford. And we trauma-bonded over being the only ones in a sea of whiteness. Over leaving our hoods and doing better and doing right by our mamis. You were an angel God sent me. I'll never forget the first text you sent me filled with so much love, respect, and adoration. You said you looked up to me but in words that felt like they were coming from the universe itself because you always seemed to send them when I needed them most. When I was struggling with making the show and was having a hard time believing in myself. You were this angel that would pop into my messages or into my office and say exactly what I needed to hear… and did I ever thank you for that? I thought I did but now I can't remember. And fuck I hope I did. You were a light. A brilliant light that struggled to shine in the midst of the darkness in this world. But I saw you, girl. I fucking saw you from the moment I laid eyes on you. I knew you were fucking magic and I wanted the world to devour your magnificence the way you deserved. Baby, you were going to have a show on HBO. I needed that show. I needed your voice. Your story. Your wisdom. Your fucking fierce wit and fearless IDGAF fervor. You should be here.
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I’ve been trying to avoid writing this post all day. Late last night the Gentefied family learned that we lost one of the brightest souls, not only on this show, but that I’ve ever met in my life. I’ve been trying my hardest to numb the hurt by focusing on the show and all the love coming in, waiting to get a phone call to let me know this was a sick joke. Camila, Im so mad at you right now. I’m so fucking pissed because I kept waiting to hear back about that coffee. I was excited to see what crazy outfit you were going to wear to the premiere. I’m mad that I don’t get to hear you ramble on and on about what you thought of your first episode of television. What I’m sure would be mostly talking about how fucking great you are. And you would be absolutely right. When Linda and I met you, we knew you were the most special, raw talent we’d ever fucking met. We knew you were going to be huge. You were going to be bigger than just our writer’s assistant. I’m so fucking mad at you because I’m one of your million adoring fans and I was going to make it my personal mission to make sure the fucking world knew your name. I was so excited thinking about being in the room again with you and being annoyed at how many fucking pictures you would ask me to take of you because you knew my conceited ass also wanted to get the best shot that made you look amazing. Mija, I knew just an inkling of the pain you were feeling and the hurt you had gone through. You inspired me every day with your perseverance and your ability to shorten very fucking word to fit into your schedule. Mija, I hope you’re at peace now. I’ll get over my anger. I’m not ready yet. Maybe it’s just my way of holding onto just a bit of the flame that made you so incredibly bright. The past 24 hours were supposed to be for all of us. Pero te lo juro que we’ll make every minute from now on count in your honor. Siempre. Rest in Power. Rest In Peace. Te amo. Your big brother, Marvinganoosh.
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@camilamariaconcepcion I love you. Pic 1: How I will always remember you. Fine as hell and achieving your dreams. Pic 2: How you always delighted me with your very judgemental sarcasm which is exactly what our @gentefied writers room needed a healthy dose of. I’ll see you next lifetime, my love. You are Free!!!
I’ll never forget meeting Camila María Concepción at a Hollywood meeting of writers and funders, to whom she introduced herself w the pronoun “that bitch.” Sad you couldn’t stay, love. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/eTAq2F05wA
— Jamilah King (@jamilahking) February 23, 2020
So incredibly sad to hear about the passing of the thoughtful, creative, funny, incisive Camila María Concepción. Cursing the world that hurt you and made you feel devalued and that is so much worse with your absence. https://t.co/mNYno0Zivy
— Sally Kohn (@sallykohn) February 26, 2020
It's absolutely heartbreaking to lose such a bright light in this way. I plan to keep Camila Maria Concepción's light shining by pushing for trans liberation.
Trans community, I love you.
— Maceo Persson (@MaceoPersson) February 25, 2020