Esteemed actress Eva Longoria stepped into the director’s shoes this year with her film Flamin’ Hot. This award-winning film is a heartfelt tribute to the Mexican-American community, deeply rooted in Chicano culture. The renowned Hollywood Museum recently unveiled a new Flamin’ Hot exhibit to commemorate Hispanic Heritage Month. Longoria was present at the event, along with Diane Warren, the lyricist behind the original song “The Fire Inside,” and the film’s inspiration, Richard Montañez, accompanied by his wife Judy.
The exhibit is a visual treat, showcasing photos and memorabilia from the set, including Longoria’s director’s chair canvas, Warren’s songwriting notes for “The Fire Inside,” a lowrider convertible from the music video performed by Becky G, and more. It serves as a testament to the unyielding spirit of dreamers in the face of adversity.
Like Richard, Longoria has faced her share of rejections throughout her career. The Desperate Housewives star confided to HOLA! USA at the event, “I’ve been told ‘No, you can’t do things like that.’ I believe this film is a cultural milestone, a love letter to the Mexican American community, which is seldom represented in cinema.” “I was aware of the unique opportunity I had,” she added.
Before Longoria shared the stage with the President of the United States at the White House screening of Flamin’ Hot, she had spent years in front of the camera, nurturing her ambition to direct. The Mexican-American Texan has directed episodes for TV shows like Black-ish, Jane the Virgin, and Gordita Chronicles, but it was Flamin’ Hot that finally gave her the chance to direct a film. An opportunity that is rare for women, especially Latinas.
Longoria has underscored the stark disparity in directorial opportunities, noting that women are often given only one chance to fail. With Flamin‘ Hot, she continues to inspire Latinas with similar aspirations, who will likely face rejection or grapple with imposter syndrome at some point in their careers. For Longoria, she told HOLA! USA, “I feel like imposter syndrome was invented by men to make women believe they can’t achieve something.” “We are capable of anything. We should never feel like we’re impostors. You learn by doing.”