Whether you are watching “And Just Like That,” an entertainment tv show, or the news, you have probably seen Sandy Tejada’s face or heard her voice more than once — especially since she is the only Afro-Latina acting in the pilot of the HBO Max comedy-drama series and in the trailer.
“I play the host of a trendy restaurant, and I opened the show with Sarah Jessica Parker. But before that, I had the first line of the show, which is huge,” Tejada told HOLA! USA, adding, “I did not see this coming because honestly when I saw the trailer, and I heard my line, I’m like, ‘Oh my God, I didn’t see my face! My scene got cut.’
According to Sandy, it was a nerve-wracking moment because it had happened to her in the past when writers go in a different direction. “But luckily, this time, I’m the Afro-Latina opening in the Sex and The City reboot,” she says. “This show transformed from being an American all-white show to adding diversity. The show is huge. It is a game-changer.
“I’m representing women, Latinas, Afro-Latinos from all over the world, and it was an amazing opportunity.”
The actress told us that it had been a dream come true co-starring next to Sarah Jessica Parker, Kristin Davis, and Cynthia Nixon, and the positive feedback added an extra layer. “Honestly, I have not had the opportunity to process it. I was shocked and in disbelief that I made the cut,” she said. “I got a lot of positive feedback. I had people emailing me, calling me; I got a lot of reposts and congratulations; it just felt good. It gave me a boost to want to work harder, and I’d want to work for bigger roles.”
Sandy said she is working nonstop and auditioning for another show in the hopes of being part of the change. “Latinos don’t look alike. I’ve auditioned for so many shows, and they end up falling into Hollywood’s stereotypes of Latinas — which is someone with pale skin and dark hair,” she told us. “We come in different shades, and it’s about time that Hollywood starts making these changes because it’s just disappointing.”
Tejada knows that such changes should come from the writer’s room; therefore, she aspires to become one. “I aspire to write and direct in the future,” she says. “But right now, I’m just still trying to create a name for myself and get myself in the door. I’m already in the door with casting; I’m trying to book bigger roles, recurring roles, leading roles, and even supporting roles. I’m pushing for more.”
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Although Sandy wants to keep growing her acting career and explore other roles, she says that “co-stars are extremely important,” anding that “having a one, two, or three liners is so difficult to execute.” The star says it took her “years actually to perfect them and know the power of being a co-star whether you have a name or whether you act as a cyclist, police officer, or whatever it is.”
Tejada told HOLA! USA that she is going to continue to proudly represent the Latinx community.