We're all just five seconds away from ugly.~America Ferrera
One of the first things you may notice about this petite brunette bombshell is she doesn't fall into the usual Hollywood mould. Lucky for us. Intended or not America Ferrera is a role model for plus size women.
Born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, America Ferrera and her five siblings (four sisters and one brother) were raised by their mother who instilled a good work ethic. America is the youngest and will graduate from the University of Southern California (USC) where she is studying International Relations. The importance of education is not lost on their family; she is the last child to complete a four year university program. Three cheers for her mother for putting them all through school.
At seventeen, America first came into prominence when she appeared in Real Women Have Curves in the starring role of Ana. It's a story about a curvy teenager trying to break away from her family. She won a Sundance Best Actress nod for this performance and has been a role model for young women ever since. Yes Virginia, you can be curvy and successful!
In The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants she played Carmen, a teen struggling to be accepted for who she is, while spending the summer sharing a pair of jeans with her three best friends. It became an instant hit with teenagers and young adults. It had a huge likelihood for success because the story already had a following of readers from Ann Brashares' successful book series.
Currently America is staring in the hit TV series on ABC, Ugly Betty. It's a warm, loveable comedy based on a show from Columbia called Betty La Fai. The show has been successfully adapted in India, Germany and Russia where they are big hits. It has played in some form in over 20 countries. Humans just love to root for those underdogs, don't we?
With silver braces, bushy eyebrows, and crazy clothing, America is transformed into Betty Suarez, the last person in the world that fashion magazine mogul Daniel Meade would sleep with. So when she goes for an interview at the elite Mode Magazine his father jumps at the opportunity of hiring her. The office is stunned when she walks in the building and decide she's unacceptable strictly by her superficial appearance. At first everyone is against the poor girl, even her womanizer boss Daniel but her integrity, sweetness and loyalty win her a few comrades.
I've been addicted to this show since its first teaser previews aired. It makes me laugh, it makes me cry, and it makes me think about our society's expectations as a whole. Betty gives hope even in some of our darkest moments. There's also an interesting background story filled with mystery and intrigue.
America has won a Golden Globe and Screen Actor's Guild award for her performance in Ugly Betty. And it's well deserved. Betty knows who she is and it is evident America does too. A curvy body can mean success. That's why this twenty-three year old actress is such a coveted role model for plus size teenagers and women everywhere.
Visit America Ferrera's Official Website