Eva Longoria‘s about to turn up the heat on her directing duties (and maybe get some bright red fingers in the process).
EW has confirmed that Longoria is officially attached to direct Flamin’ Hot, a biopic about Richard Montanez, the man who the invented iconic snack, Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. DeVon Franklin (Breakthrough) will produce through a deal at Fox, and the film is slated to be a Fox Searchlight title.
Flamin’ Hot tells the story of Richard and Judy Montanez. The son of a Mexican immigrant, Richard rose from humble beginnings, working as a janitor at Frito Lay when he developed the idea for Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, inspired by the flavors of his community. The spicy snack (and twist on an already popular brand) not only revitalized Frito Lay, but disrupted the food industry and created a pop culture phenomenon.
The Desperate Housewives star turned multi-hyphenate has directed numerous episodes of television, including episodes of Jane the Virgin, Black-ish, and Grand Hotel, on which she executive produces and has guest starred. Now, Longoria will make her feature film directing debut with two films in the span of a year with Flamin’ Hot and Universal’s 24/7, which was previously announced.
It’s a huge step for Longoria, but for the industry at large as well. According to Stacy Smith’s USC Latino Inclusion Study, only one Latina in the past 12 years has directed one of the top 1,200 grossing films. Longoria will be directing two major studio films within the course of a year, the only Latina to do so.
Flamin’ Hot is far from the first biopic to look at the creators of products that have changed our world. David O. Russell directed Joy about Joy Mangano, who built an empire after developing the Miracle Mop, while 2016’s The Founder delved inside the story behind fast-food chain McDonald’s. Longoria reportedly landed the job partly because of her authentic ties to the ways in which Montanez used his background and community to find unique success.