On Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Rosa Diaz
- Beatriz originally read for Amy. When another Latina was cast in the role, she assumed she wouldn't be called back because no network show would cast two Latinas in lead roles.
- After Beatriz came out as bisexual, Twitter/fandom began to imagine Rosa was, too.
- She always played Rosa with the possibility of bisexuality and/or polyamory in mind.
- Was thrilled when Dan Goor suggested the coming out storyline. As the 99th and 100th episodes, it got extra attention and promotion.
- Beatriz used her own coming out experience to inform Rosa's family's reactions; it was important to her to debunk certain things about bisexuality via those characters.
- Her main stipulation was that Rosa say "bisexual" often and without stigma: "She names her sexuality, versus many bisexual characters that you see in television in the past that have just happened to date men and women, and they’re just fluid and sexy [...]"
- Gina Rodriguez was cast as her love interest because they're friends and Beatriz's first project was with her.
- Thinks it's important to see Rosa kiss a woman on screen next season.
- The first gay character she saw on TV was Wilson Cruz on My So-Called Life.
- Will and Grace was valuable but followed gay white males and she's a Latina bisexual female: "I can sort of claim it, but also I can’t."
- Many times bisexual characters are hypersexualized villains and their sexuality is part of their amorality, which makes bisexuality feel inherently wrong.
- It's mostly straight white people who get happy endings on TV.
- As a child, she sometimes wished to be white because it looked much easier; that feeling recurred as an adult: "the morning after the election, I had that feeling, which was devastating to me because it’s not really what I want. I want to be who I am, but I felt in that moment, wouldn’t it be so much easier if I was?"
- Sometimes feels she has to "choose a fight" between her race and her sexuality.
- When she was young, she took some stereotypical "spicy Latina" roles to pay the bills; now, while she's not opposed to playing characters with an accent, she wants them to be complex and not stereotypes.
- Realized she was bisexual at 11, visiting a Frida Kahlo exhibit.
- "Museums were probably the root for me because it was free rein to stare at the beautiful bodies in all the paintings [... and] to stand in a group of people and not feel like what you’re doing is wrong."
- She was wary of coming out to her family, especially when she was not in a relationship with a woman anyway.
- It felt inauthentic, especially as an actor who wanted her bisexuality to serve as representation for others like her
- Her parents are immigrants and religious, having relied on the church for a sense of community.
- Her parents found out through the internet: "It was a slow progression of coming out to some friends, to my sister, and then publicly, and having my parents react with the public coming out, which hasn’t been an easy road, but I think they’re okay."
- They watch every episode of B99 but haven't commented on Rosa's coming out.
- Anticipates having the "I'm still bisexual" conversation forever since she's married to a man and monogamous.
- The whole cast is supportive of Terry Crews sharing his story of sexual harassment.
- She's proud of him for his strength in breaking down society's expectations of men (especially black men) to be hypermasculine and unassailable.
- Cast and crew rallied around her when she called out a guest star on using pet names.
It's a nice interview, so I recommend reading it in her own words.
What first made you realize your sexuality? and/or
What character(s) do you see yourself in?