A talented and innovative group of Latinos and like-minded artists have joined forces to produce a web series showcasing the issue of the gentrification of Bushwick, Brooklyn. The series, East WillyB, presently airs two short segments online. The segments are less then three minutes long and future segments will be aired.
Creators Julia Ahamuda Grob and Yamin Segal aim to reach the “new generation of Latinos” who are wired and plugged in, educated, and tired of one-dimensional stereotypes in the media. With limited English language Latino programming on television and the challenges of getting such shows on the air, the pair decided to launch their series online.
The webisode earns its name from “East Williamsburg,” a name conceived by real estate agencies to reference Brooklyn’s popular Williamsburg area and entice renters to neighboring Bushwick. The name also refers to the main character, a second-generation Puerto Rican named Willie Reyes Jr. who is the owner of a neighborhood sports bar. With hipsters moving into el barrio and rents going up, Willy Jr. is faced with the possibility of going out of business.
The web series features April Hernandez (Dexter, Freedom Writers), Flaco Navaja (Fighting, Falling Awake), Raul Castillo (Nurse Jackie, IFC’s Cold Weather), Caridad “La Bruja” De La Luz (Bamboozled, Down to the Bone), Danny Hoch (Black Hawk Down, American Splendor), and many of NYC’s top Latino actors.
If the series is successful more segments will be aired, so visit the East WillyB site, signup for segment notifications, join its Facebook and Twitter pages, and pass along this information to anyone you think would enjoy this incredible online effort.