'Devious Maids,' Producer Eva Longoria Fight Racial Stereotypes

Image: 'Devious Maids,' Producer Eva Longoria Fight Racial Stereotypes

Monday, 24 Jun 2013 07:30 AM

By Clyde Hughes

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TV producer Marc Cherry struck gold with Eva Longoria with the ABC show "Desperate Housewives," but the two are trying to overcome criticism of racial stereotypes in their newest pairing on Lifetime's new "Devious Maids."

Longoria is listed as one of the executive producers of "Devious Maids" that features Latina cast members Ana Ortiz, Dania Ramirez, Roselyn Sanchez, Judy Reyes and Edy Ganem. Ortiz, Ramirez, Sanchez and Reyes play maids working in the home of a Beverly Hills mansion, according to IMDB.com. Ganem plays Reyes' daughter, who has a love interest with the son of powerful family the maids work for.

The series is an adaptation from the Mexican telenovela "Ellas son la Alegria del Hogar" or "They Are the Joy of Home," according to the Los Angeles Times. The show, which also stars longtime "All My Children" star Susan Lucci, is set to premiere on Sunday, June 23, but charges of negative stereotypes are already flying.

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"I love that Eva Longoria is trying to blaze the trail for more Latino/a-produce content to hit the mainstream airways; however, her means to that end is endlessly disappointing and shortsighted," said Tanisha L. Ramirez of Huffington Post's Latino Voices.

Longoria defended the show and her involvement in the project to E! News.

"I'm not the authority of Latinos, but I definitely have a perspective that Marc respects and I'm a very big advocate in my community and so I'm happy to contribute in that way," Longoria told E! News. "So storyline-wise, I always wanted to make sure that the girls are the moral compass of the show and that they're really the heroes. And you'll see that throughout the season."

Longoria told the Huffington Post that the angle of the Latina maids is one slice of Latino life and does not make it unworthy for being a vehicle to delve into other issues in a humorous way.

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"They are leads of the show, and they are playing maids, which is a realistic reflection of our society today in America," Longoria told the Huffington Post. "When we get any sort of backlash for -- 'Oh, they're playing the stereotypical maids' -- my immediate response is, 'So you're telling me those stories aren't worth telling, that those people are lesser than, that their stories aren't worth exploring, that they have no complexity in their life because they're a maid?'"

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