Revenge is coming back to ABC and this time the series will reportedly feature a Latinx lead as the central character though it has not been confirmed yet who will be cast in the role.
According to Deadline, the reboot will chronicle the story of a young Latinx immigrant who is guided by one of the original series’ favorite characters, she arrives in Malibu to exact revenge on a pharmaceutical dynasty (think: the Sackler family, who made $13 billion off OxyContin). Their greed leads to the murder of her biochemist mother, the destruction of her family, and a global epidemic like the opioid epidemic in the U.S. and this is what leads her to exact revenge on the family.
ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke previously told The Hollywood Reporter that she was open to revisiting some of the network’s “brand-defining” shows. “We’ll continue to lean into the female-forward but not male-repellent character dramas and comedies going forward. That means not necessarily female leads, but some entry point for our female audience, which is large.”
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Inspired by the Alexandre Dumas classic revenge novel The Count of Monte Cristo, the series will likely have the lead take on the same emotional journey as depicted in both the book and original series, with original series’ creator and executive producer Mike Kelley at the helm.
While they have not confirmed that the Latinx character will be played by a Latina actress, the hope is that this show will add to Latinx representation in entertainment. After all, we need more shows with Latina leads.
During the 2018 pilot season, nearly 30 shows were picked to air across various networks and only three included Latinx leads including Grand Hotel, which aired on ABC and was canceled after one season. But this isn’t due to a lack of material. Roughly 34 pilots that weren’t selected, nearly half featured Latinx main characters or storylines, NBC News reports. The other two shows that were selected were Roswell, New Mexico and the reboot of Charmed which are two seasons in and join current shows like Vida, East los High, On My Block, Queen Of The South, One Day at a Time, and Los Espookys with a predominantly Latinx cast.
“Latinx audiences need to show up, the same way they also show up for white content, and understand the power they have,” One Day at a Time creator Gloria Calderón-Kellet told NBC News.
The reboot is still in the early stages and the returning character has not yet been announced. There are also no actors currently attached to the project. The original Revenge cast included Emily VanCamp, Madeleine Stowe, Gabriel Mann, and Nick Wechsler. The series ran from 2011 through 2015. In the original series, VanCamp played Emily Thorne, a young woman who heads to the Hamptons to exact revenge on a wealthy family who had framed her father.
With such a successful show like Revenge featuring a Latinx lead on a major network, we’re hopeful it’ll achieve the success Grand Hotel couldn’t and that’ll open the doors for ABC — home of Black-ish, Mixed-ish, and Fresh Off the Boat — to give the same treatment to a Latinx-themed show. Until then, we’ll have to wait to see who they cast for Revenge and if it appeals to a Latinx audience.