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As two studios battle for her next feature slot, Gina Rodriguez has signed on to voice CARMEN SANDIEGO in a new animated series that’s in the works at Netflix, the Tracking Board has exclusively learned. The deal comes as the Golden Globe-winning actress negotiates for the lead role in Sony’s remake of MISS BALA and 20th Century Fox’s comedy FIRE ME — though she may have to choose between them.
Miss Bala follows a beauty pageant contestant who witnesses a gang shooting and is subsequently kidnapped and forced to work for the gang in the drug trade. Gerardo Naranjo directed the original film, which received a foreign language Oscar nomination.
Fire Me marks the feature directorial debut of Ryan Case, the Emmy-winning editor and director of Modern Family. Ben Still’s Red Hour Films is producing the movie, which is inspired by the Libby Malin novel, and is said to be similar in tone to the 1980 comedy 9 to 5.
Sources say that the two projects are scheduled to shoot around the same time, so it would be difficult for Rodriguez to do both, though Sony sees Miss Bala as a potential franchise starter, which could give it an edge.
In any event, the star of the hit CW series Jane the Virgin is making time in her busy schedule to voice Carmen Sandiego, which is based on the iconic video game series Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? and the subsequent TV show of the same name, which starred Lynne Thigpen as “The Chief.”
Insiders say that Netflix has ordered 20 episodes of the series, which aims to be as educational as it is entertaining, given the title character’s globetrotting adventures.
Interestingly enough, the two studios duking it out for Rodriguez’s next live-action feature slot both have animated films coming out later this year that feature the actress. She voices Mary in Sony Pictures Animation’s The Star, which will light up theaters in November, and she voices Una in Twentieth Century Fox Animation’s Ferdinand, which gallops into theaters the following month.
Rodriguez recently starred opposite Mark Wahlberg in Peter Berg’s Deepwater Horizon, and she’ll next be seen alongside Natalie Portman in Alex Garland’s sci-fi movie Annihilation, which debuted footage at CinemaCon that looked absolutely incredible. With a fall release planned, you shouldn’t have to wait too much longer for Paramount to unveil that trailer.
Jeff Sneider | Editor in Chief