‘Selena: The Series’ Shows How Selena Resisted Singing in Spanish

by Jeremy Spirogis
Selena: The Series

Selena: The Series tells the story of Selena’s rise within the music trade. She started as a tejano singer of Spanish language songs. Unfortunately, her English language crossover got here after her demise in 1995 on the age of 24. The Netflix sequence additionally reveals how studying to embrace the Spanish songs supplied Selena with the premise to cross over. 

Selena: The Series
Christian Serratos | Netflix

Selena: The Series creator Moisés Zamora spoke with Showbiz Cheat Sheet by telephone about telling the story of Selena and her household on Netflix. We’ll have extra with Zamora this weekend, however first a preview of what you’ll see on Selena. The present premieres Dec. four on Netflix.

The creator of ‘Selena: The Series’ struggled along with her crossover too

Zamora grew up in a Mexican-American group in California. He mentioned he usually heard Selena songs at weddings and quinceaneras. Zamora mentioned he was a junior in highschool when Selena died. That was additionally when her English album Dreaming Of You got here out.

I simply began seeing a few of my highschool associates that weren’t Latino or that didn’t develop up along with her begin singing it and loving it. It was slightly jarring as a result of each of my worlds had been slightly bit separated. Now they had been colliding and I didn’t know what to do with it. I used to be so resentful that they had been singing Selena as a result of I felt type of possessive about who she was for us. But I understood and she or he helped me perceive my Mexican-American identification. We grew up separating these worlds however once they do come collectively, it truly feels such as you’re really entire, otherwise you’re growing your individual identification at such a younger age. I feel that was a part of that rising up course of for me.

Moisés Zamora, interview with Showbiz Cheat Sheet, 11/20/2020

Moisés Zamora assembled various writers to seize the complete scope of ‘Selena: The Series’

To additional seize the crossover enchantment of Selena, Zamora made certain Selena: The Series writers included Latinx and African-American writers, and many ladies. It was additionally essential to Zamora to incorporate Latinx writers who got here from totally different Mexican-American cultures. 

Young Selena and FamilyYoung Selena and Family
L-R: Juan Martinez, Ricardo Chariva, Madison Taylor Baez, Seidy Lopez and Daniela Estrada | Sara Khalid/Netflix

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“We wanted to make sure that we didn’t have any blind spots telling this from a single point of view,” Zamora mentioned. “Additionally, there is huge diversity when it comes to identity and within the Latino community, especially within the Mexican-American community. Mexican-American, second and third generation people from South Texas are not culturally 100% in tune with people from Chicago or Washington or California. So there was even diversity within the Mexican-American writers. We had four from Texas. For the family, it was important to channel South Texas.”

The singer had the identical struggles as her followers 

Selena: The Series reveals Selena from eight years previous to the top of her life. As a youngster in Corpus Christi, Texas, Selena Quintanilla favored her American influences. 

Selena y Los DinosSelena y Los Dinos
L-R: Carlos Alfredo Jr., Hunter Reese Pena, Noemi Gonzalez, Christian Serratos, Gabriel Chavarria, and Jesse Posey | Michael Lavine/Netflix

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“I wanted to be able to see the evolution of Selena and how the kids dealt with that, how she wanted to sing in English” Zamora mentioned. “She was an American teen first. She loved Jodi Whatley, Janet Jackson and she pushed for those songs in English but it’s just the opportunities were not there at that time. Because of the immigrant workforce and the connection to that community that they had, they wanted a specific kind of music that was still part of their lives.”

Fans know that Selena in the end does launch English-language music. Zamora mentioned Selena: The Series reveals the Quintanillas develop their Mexican facet alongside the best way.

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“It was something that she had to learn and they had to embrace,” Zamora mentioned. “Ultimately it paid off. It paved the way to that mainstream crossover that eventually happened for her, even though it’s after her death. That was really important and it was also important to the family to make sure that it was authentic, that they were English at home and there was a little Spanish here and Spanish there. Slowly they embraced that second language and that Mexican identity.”

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