‘Telenovela’ stars ready for their close-up

Canela and Longoria
Canela and Longoria Jordin Althaus/NBC

Jencarlos Canela is ready for prime time.

The Hialeah native is headlining the upcoming NBC workplace comedy Telenovela, as Eva Longoria’s ex husband and ego-driven costar. It officially premieres at 10 p.m. Jan. 4, but a two-episode preview aired Monday night.

Canela knows a thing or two about telenovelas, with such Spanish-language soaps as Más Sabe el Diablo, Mi Corazón Insiste and Pasión Prohibida on his résumé.

You could say the 27-year-old, who doubles as a pop singer (Bajito), is proud of his crossover success.

“I want everyone to realize the importance of a series like this one,” he said Friday from Marlins Park during rehearsals for the Grand Slam Party Latino concert. “It’s in English, with a Spanish title, and all of the cast members are either Latino or of Latino heritage.”

Like Longoria. The actress was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, and is a ninth-generation American of Mexican descent. But, like her Telenovela character — aging diva Ana Sofia Calderon — she has a poor command of the Spanish language.

“It’s not good, even though I wish it were,” admitted Longoria on Thursday from the launch of The Global Gift Initiative: Miami, assisting local women in their careers, at Auberge Residences & Spa downtown sales office. “Believe me. I don’t even speak Spanglish!”

Working with the former Desperate Housewives star was a learning experience for Canela.

“Eva is one of the smartest people I have ever met in my life and one of the most prepared,” said the actor of the 40-year-old.

One thing we can definitely learn from Longoria — how to pull together an outfit.

The ravishing brunette was flawless in a lace cutout olive dress, not one hair out of place, not one lash smudged, despite the inclement weather. A few hours earlier, the humidity reisistant star appeared at Casa Tua in Miami Beach for the launch of interior designer Ricardo Barroso’s photographic memoir, Ricardo Barroso Interiors, in a different ensemble — an emerald pantsuit with plunging neckline.

Longoria said it was all in the color.

“My stylist is telling me I should wear more green. What do you think?”


What a life. In between Baseling like a boss, Gabrielle Union managed to squeeze in some retail therapy. On Saturday, the actress took a break from the endless rain and gallery hopping to browse the Calypso St. Barth Art Basel Pop Up at Soho Beach House, shopping the luxury lifestyle brand’s curated selection of dresses, tops and accessories. Union was so impressed, she took to Instagram to show off her favorite Calypso Caftan:


All’s good in Kim Kardashian’s world. That’s according to her BFF, restaurateur Jonathan Cheban, who was hanging out in Miami Beach with girlfriend Anat Popovsky on Monday. When a bystander asked her how the new mom was coming along with baby son Saint, as per The Daily Mail, the sometime reality star replied: “She’s doing great.”

Caterina Balzano contributed to this report.