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Actress Gina Rodriguez Producing Two Latino-Led TV Dramas About Immigration

Gina Rodriguez attends The 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium in 2017. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for TNT)
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By Alex Martinez

Actress Gina Rodriguez is keen to highlight the work of Latino artists and other actors of color on her Instagram account, which boasts nearly two million followers. So it’s no surprise that the Jane the Virgin star is producing a pair of shows that put Latinos and immigrants at the forefront.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Rodriguez has sold two Latino-focused dramas to CBS and The CW through her I Can & I Will Productions company, which aims to diversify the industry. Rodriguez said it’s been her goal to showcase more Latinos in Hollywood.

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Have Mercy is the CBS project, which focuses on a Latina doctor who can’t practice after emigrating to Miami, according to Variety. She begins to work as a nurse’s assistant but then decides to open a makeshift clinic in her apartment to help her community, Variety reports. It’s based on the German pilot Dr. Illegal, which Rodriguez optioned in January.

Dailyn Rodriguez, co-executive producer for Queen of the South, will write the script and will executive produce with Intrigue Entertainment’s Tariq Jalil and Lucas Carter, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Rodriguez and Emily Gipson will also executive produce.

Titled Illegal, The CW show centers on the real-life experience of Rafael Agustín, a 16-year-old high school student who is just trying to survive puberty, according to Deadline. Agustín, a graduate of UCLA and Mt. San Antonio College, was born in Ecuador but grew up in the United States. It wasn’t until high school that he learned he was undocumented.

The show is written and co-executive produced by Agustín, who also writes for Jane the Virgin. Rodriguez and Gipson will executive produce, Variety reports.

Agustín on Wednesday announced the show in a tweet declaring his support for DACA, the Obama-era program that protects young immigrants from deportation. On Tuesday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the program would be rescinded:

Rodriguez has also been a staunch supporter of the program: