This article originally appeared in the March/April 2017 issue of Latina Magazine.
Becky G’s first interaction with the Power Rangers was just a tad illegal. “I used to have really bootleg cable,” she says, laughing, “and Power Rangers would be one of the shows I’d see in the morning when I was getting ready for school.” This March, Becky gets to live out a “childhood dream” as the Yellow Ranger in the film adaption of the popular ’90s children’s show. She was a no-brainer—the mexicana’s musical career is a marvel. Discovered on YouTube by covering Jay Z and Kanye West songs, dropping hit singles (“Shower”) without a proper album, then making a splash in the Spanish language market to fill the void left by the late legends, Selena and Jenni Rivera, she’s pretty superhero-esque if you ask us.
Power Rangers is your first major film role. What spoke to you about your character?
My character Trini is a total badass. All the kids in the movie are teenagers and we’re figuring out who we are and where we fit in the world. You’ll see Trini going through a transition of being this loner and owning it to realizing that she actually has real friendships that are meaningful. She isn’t necessarily knowledgeable of how powerful she can be, she low-key underestimates herself but pretends like she’s got it all under control. A huge part of the reason I got cast is because I went into my final audition with our director, Dean Israelite, and he didn’t talk to me like I was “Becky G,” he was more interested in my upbringing and my experiences in school. When I was really honest about being bullied and misunderstood, I think he realized that it would be really easy to tap into that character even though I’m not a trained actress. And it was a really fun role to play.
You and your fellow rangers comprise one of the most ethnically diverse superhero film casts ever.
It’s very diverse. We’re all from different continents, we all come from different backgrounds, we’re just a mix of different cultures. We represent who we are and we don’t have any shame in that. What was really awesome about the audition process was that in the character breakdown there was no ethnicity to any of the characters. It wasn’t based on, “We have to have this ranger be this skin color.” It had to do with the personality. I think it was intentional to be diverse but not the way everyone expected it to be—it was done in a more positive, genuine way.
Your first acting gig was on Empire, which is music- focused. Now you’re doing a superhero film. Was it a conscious decision to do a film not connected to your day job?
With Empire, it was super fun and a nice introduction to the acting world. And shooting a TV show is much different than filming a movie. Valentina was the total opposite of me; she was sexy, feisty, conniving, and rude and I’m everything but those things. In Empire people got to see me as a grown young woman, and in this they’ll see an innocent side of me. This movie is so special because as much as there is action, there is a lot of heart to the film, which I think will give non-fans of the Power Rangers something to relate to.
You’re also breaking new ground in music with the reverse crossover into the spanish-language market.
I always wanted to do it. Real talk: I was born in America and I’m proud to be both American and Mexican. I listen to Spanish and English music. The first album that I bought was by Christina Aguilera and on one side you could listen to the song in English and then you’d flip it over and hear the same song in Spanish.
On a personal note, you’re enjoying a great relationship with soccer star, Sebastian Lletget. What’s the difference between dating a Latino as opposed to a non-Latino?
It’s different. There’s nothing more special than being able to bond over the culture, how united we are, how important his family is to him; it makes me fall for him even more. He takes care of them. He is very passionate about his career, our relationship, and his family, and that’s something to admire in a man. I mean for a young man to admit his feelings to the whole world about his girl, it’s not easy. And he doesn’t even have to think about it. I love that about him.
Power Rangers morphs into theaters on Friday, March 24th! Check out a pic of the cast below: