Michaela Jaé Rodriguez and Julio Macias' coveted series may have come to an end this year, but for these two stars, it's only the beginning.
These Latin(x) talents are two to watch, coming off highly buzzed-about roles on their hit series, each deep-diving into select communities and giving viewers insight into the lives of the underrepresented.
From following an Afro-Latinx trans woman and her Found Family through the height of the AIDS epidemic in NYC --- or a complex cholo with a heart of gold protecting loved ones in a fictionalized Californian hood, Rodriguez and Macias have only just begun to regal viewers with their storytelling.
And thus, the two grace the digital covers of the iconic Latina magazine (which is celebrating 25 years) in a special dual feature.
Twenty-Five years later, Latina continues to revamp itself and evolve, and their cover stars prove as much as the magazine hits milestones and looks ahead to the future of Latin representation and excellence.
It renews its mission of amplifying the voices and faces of the diverse Latin culture, championing trendsetters, trailblazers, and rising talents -- a task that the historic youngest Chief Content Officer, Camila Legaspi, 25, is taking seriously.
For Latina, when considering a breadth of rising Latin talents leaving a lasting impression, making a difference, and leading the charge in breaking through barriers in Hollywood, Rodriguez and Macias came to mind.
Michaela Jaé Rodriguez entered our homes and hearts as the lead of Pose, Blanca Evangelista.
And for three seasons, she blew us away with a heartrending, incredible performance so notable that she broke ground as the first trans actor nominated for an Emmy in the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series category this year.
Latina's Jasmin Hernandez speaks to the actress about this incredible accomplishment in detail during the feature interview.
"I feel like it was an ode to my ancestors on how hard they had to fight within the trans community. I feel like it was also an ode to my Latino and Black ancestors who never got a chance to see, you know, the ones thrive before them or see the ones thrive after them."
This triple-threat actress, singer, and dancer goes into great detail about her journey toward shattering glass ceilings for the trans and LBGTQ+ community, repping Afro-Latinas, and her deep connection to her role as Blanca.
It's a wonderful interview you don't want to miss.
In addition to gracing the cover of Latina, you can catch her in Netflix's Tick Tick Boom. You'll also want to keep a lookout for Apple TV's upcoming project with Maya Rudulph (potentially) titled Loot and Girls Can't Shoot (& Other Lies) alongside Beanie Feldstein, Jameela Jamil, and Lolly Adefope.
You should also check out her debut single, "Sometime to Say."
If Rodriguez is Latina's face of the new generation of unstoppable talents on their grind, then she's in good company with Julio Macias.
It's no surprise that Latina is praising the star for his storytelling abilities and versatility.
The double-feature was an unexpected delight and surprise when Macias' own cover dropped shortly after Rodriguez's.
While Rodriguez's fittingly hailed the multi-talented star as a storyteller and protector, Macias' simply asks the question of who is he?
It's a pertinent question for an actor with a deep understanding of two cultures as a Mexican immigrant immersed in Chicano culture.
And the answer is anything but simple when you factor in an actor whose goal is to be so versatile as an actor that he's damn near unrecognizable, "I want to be a chameleon. Prosthetic after prosthetic after prosthetic."
Macias' acclaimed Oscar "Spooky" Diaz is nothing like his depiction of Pete Astudillo in Selena the Series, and Macias loves it that way.
Lauren Sanchez's featured interview with Macias reveals the actor's passion for telling Mexican and Chicano stories, avoiding typecasts, and subverting them.
His experiences merge these two identities and use them to tell stories that represent La Gente well -- their authenticity and complexity.
He also speaks of what he channels to bring each of his characters to life, bringing historical context and intentionality to each role, which we've experienced ourselves when witnessing the depth and growth of Macias' Oscar Diaz.
If anyone intends to be at the forefront of changing how Hollywood views Latin culture, it's Macias, and we, for one, are excited to see him succeed with all his future roles.
Don't forget to check out the features of these two icons in the making and learn more about how Latina's Chief Content Officer Camila Legaspi is striving to elevate, diversify, and amplify the 'zine and its new generation of stars to watch with her fresh perspective and drive.
Over to you, TV Fanatics!
All photography featured by Natalia Mantini as part of Latina's dual-cover photos and featured piece highlighting these two actors.
Credits: Michaela Jae Rodriguez for Latina Photography by Natalia Mantini, Styling by Wilford Lenov. Makeup by Allan Avendaño, Hair by Tym Wallace, Nails by Thuy Nguyen, Cover Design by Lizette Ayala, Set Design by Little Apple Projects, Production by Camp Productions, Creative Direction by Camila Legaspi, Written by Jasmin Hernandez and Edited by Alissa Lopez Serfozo
Julio Macias for LATINA Photography by Natalia Mantini, Styling by Wilford Lenov, Grooming by Eliven Q, Cover Design by Lizette Ayala, Set Design by Little Apple Projects, Production by Camp Productions, Creative Direction by Camila Legaspi, Written by Laura Sanchez and Edited by Alissa Lopez Serfozo
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. She is an insomniac who spends late nights and early mornings binge-watching way too many shows and binge-drinking way too much tea. Her eclectic taste makes her an unpredictable viewer with an appreciation for complex characters, diverse representation, dynamic duos, compelling stories, and guilty pleasures. You'll definitely find her obsessively live-tweeting, waxing poetic, and chatting up fellow Fanatics and readers. Follow her on X.