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Eva Longoria and Zoe Saldaña ‘heartbroken’ over ‘Gordita Chronicles’ cancellation

The heartwarming HBO Max sitcom was cancelled after one season — and fans are disappointed.
Breakout star Olivia Goncalves steals the show as Cucu Castelli.
Breakout star Olivia Goncalves steals the show as Cucu Castelli.Laura Magruder/HBO Max

“Gordita Chronicles” has been cancelled after just one season, and executive producers Eva Longoria and Zoe Saldaña are “heartbroken.”

On Friday, HBO Max confirmed to TODAY that it would not be renewing the sitcom for a second season.

“We are heartbroken by the larger programming changes at HBO Max that will not allow our special show that is ‘Gordita Chronicles,’ showrun by LatinX comedy powerhouse Brigitte Muñoz-Liebowitz, to have a second season at its original home,” Longoria and Saldaña said in a joint statement to TODAY. “As producers and storytellers who are continually seeking out the authentic and original stories that highlight our community’s joy and talent, we are so proud to have worked on this piece of magic.”

“We continue to be blown away by the overwhelmingly positive critical response coupled with our growing audience numbers, which prove that viewers recognize the importance of this show’s existence and the crucial space it is filling for LatinX content in the media landscape,” the statement continued.

Released on June 23, “Gordita Chronicles” is set in the ‘80s and follows the Castelli family as they move from the Dominican Republic to start a new life in Miami. Created by Claudia Forestieri, it’s a heartwarming and hilarious comedy led by newcomer Olivia Goncalves as the show’s lead, 12-year-old Cucu. 

Aside from serving as an executive producer, Longoria also directed the show’s first episode.

In a statement to TODAY, a spokesperson for HBO noted that the cancellation was due to the streaming services’ programming shift.

“Live-action kids and family programming will not be part of our programming focus in the immediate future, and as a result, we’ve had to make the very difficult decision to end ‘Gordita Chronicles’ at HBO Max,” the statement reads. “The series earned critical acclaim and a loyal following, and we are proud to have worked with creator Claudia Forestieri and our two powerhouse executive producers, Eva Longoria (who also masterfully directed the pilot) and Zoe Saldana, to bring Cucu’s journey to the screen.” 

Adding, “We thank them and the talented cast and crew for creating such a heartfelt, groundbreaking show that connected deeply with a very important demographic.”

Showrunner Muñoz-Liebowitz confirmed that they would be shopping the show, hoping to get it picked up by another network.

“This is a load of lemons... but Gorditas make lemonade! We’re shopping for a shiny new spot. #gorditachronicles @hbomax,” she tweeted alongside an article by Deadline, who first reported the cancellation.

Forestieri who has written for shows like “Selena: The Series” and “Good Trouble” — also tweeted, “Cucu needs a new casa🏡people... *sigh* #gorditaneedsanewcasa #gorditachronicles.”

Many more fans expressed their sadness over the show being canceled.

"Tapping into the #SaveGorditaChronicles fight. All hands on deck my friends. Get loud with us This show is a treasure. Not only one of the best Latine comedies but best comedies in general this year. 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. Join us! #SaveGorditaChronicles," actor Dani Fernandez tweeted.

Writer on the show Fran Cabrera also wrote, “This week has been quite heartbreaking. But if there’s one thing Cucu taught us, was to persevere. I can’t wait till we find a new home for our Castelli family to continue to make us laugh. We’re immigrants, we don’t give up easily. #GorditaChronicles"

“So sad to see that #GorditaChronicles got canceled feels like #OneDayAtATime allover again,” another fan tweeted, with another adding, “I know Gordita Chronicles will find another home!! #SaveGorditaChronicles !!”

"What’s a word for shocked but not surprised? Latine shows ALWAYS get cancelled before their time," one person tweeted. "Gordita Chronicles was a warm hug of a show and I hope it finds a new home #SaveGorditaChronicles"

"As someone from Miami, Gordita Chronicles was a fun, feel-good show with rich and authentic characters that reminded me of home. Sad to see it be cancelled so quickly, but hoping it finds a new home ASAP!" someone else wrote.

In a TV landscape where Latinx characters are already underrepresented, Latinx-led shows frequently get cancelled. “Gordita Chronicles” is one of many Latinx shows that prematurely ended like “Vida,” “Grand Hotel,” “One Day at a Time” and “The Baker and the Beauty,” to name a few. This year, Netflix’s “Gentefied” and ABC’s “Promise Land,” which both had predominately Latinx casts, were canceled.

In 2021, UCLA released a Hollywood Diversity Report TV analysis that revealed that Latinx talent — including actors, directors and writers — remain marginalized in Hollywood, according to Variety. While 18.5% of people in the United States identify as Hispanic or Latinx, in the 2019-2020 season Latinx actors made up only 6.3% for broadcast, 5.7% for cable and 5.5% for digital.