Silvio Horta, Ugly Betty Creator, Found Dead at 45 of Apparent Suicide

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Silvio Horta, who created the hit ABC dramedy Ugly Betty, has died. 

Variety is reporting that the 45-year-old was found dead in a Miami hotel room in an apparent suicide.

Sources told the outlet that Horta died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

Silvio Horta

Horta is best known for adapting “Yo soy Betty, la fea,” for American audiences. 

The series, known as Ugly Betty, was a roaring success for ABC, propelling America Ferrera to stardom. 

Ferrera garnered an Emmy for her role on the series, with the series as a whole winning 42 awards throughout its run. 

The series even scooped a Golden Globe for Best Television Series - Musical or Comedy in 2007, with Horta taking to the stage to accept the award. 

Silvio Horta Attends Event

It focused on a young woman who landed a job at a glossy fashion magazine, despite not being fashionable. 

The supporting cast included Vanessa Williams, Becki Newton, Michael Urie, and Rebecca Romijn.

It also featured high-profile guest stars, including Lindsay Lohan, Adele, Martha Stewart, and Victoria Beckham.  

The series lasted four seasons and aired on ABC from 2006-10, with Horta on board as executive producer and showrunner.

ABC made the controversial decision to shift it to the lesser-viewed Friday night slot for its fourth season, and the ratings slipped lower. 

The network reversed the decision after, but the damage was done, and it was subsequently canceled. 

Silvio Horta Promotes Ugly Betty

Horta also created Jake 2.0, a sci-fi drama that lasted two seasons. It starred Christopher Gorham, who later starred on Ugly Betty. 

He also worked as a writer on Sci-Fi series The Chronicle. 

On the big screen, Horta wrote the screenplay for Urban Legend and its sequel Urban Legend: Final Cut. 

Horta was born on August 14, 1974, and was the son of Cuban immigrants. His parents divorced when he was 6, and Horta went on to graduate from Coral Gables Senior School in 1992.

He subsequently attended NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. He moved to Los Angeles in 1996 and that's where he found success. 

Silvio Horta Attends Impact Awards

America Ferrara has shared her thoughts on Horta's passing on her Instagram account:

“I’m stunned and heartbroken to hear the devastating news of Ugly Betty creator, Silvio Horta’s death,” She shared.

“His talent and creativity brought me and so many others such joy & light. I’m thinking of his family and loved ones who must be in so much pain right now- and of the whole Ugly Betty family who feel this loss so deeply.”

Her costar, Vanessa Williams, also shared thoughts on Instagram: 

“Still in shock after hearing the tragic news of our #uglybetty creator #silviohorta 💔 His creativity and passion will be missed by so many of us that worked with him. May he Rest In Peace,” she wrote.

He sold the screenplay for Urban Legend. The movie starred Jared Leto and grossed $72 million at the worldwide box office. 

We extend our thoughts and prayers to the friends and family of Silvio during this difficult time. 

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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