What Gentefied’s Karrie Martin, J.J. Soria And Carlos Santos Have Learned From Working With Their Veteran Co-Stars

Netflix’s Gentefied is easily one of the streamer's most underrated titles. The bilingual dramedy, which centers on three Mexican-American cousins, has a freshness to it, which is firmly established by co-creators Marvin Lemus & Linda Yvette Chávez. And of course, the show features an excellent cast that includes lead stars Karrie Martin, J.J. Soria and Carlos Santos. The three actors certainly shine, as do the veteran performers they work with. As you would imagine, the young stars definitely appreciate their colleagues, and they recently opened up about what they’ve learned from them while working on the show. 

Over the course of two seasons, the trio have had a chance to act alongside a number of seasoned performers. Alma Martinez, Alejandro Patiño and Manuel Uriza are among the notable stage and screen actors that have graced the show with their presence. When I spoke with the three younger stars ahead of Season 2’s release, I couldn’t help but ask about what they’d soaked up on set. Karrie Martin, who plays the bubbly, intelligent and socially conscious Ana, shouted out co-star Joaquín Cosío, who plays the lovable Pop: 

Joaquín brings such a stillness to his work and is so thoughtful and meticulous in every word he speaks that as... for myself, as a young actress, I feel like it really forces me to listen and to take in, in such a great deal, the emotion that he approaches everything with. So it’s been a classroom in itself working with him.

You really can’t argue with the actress’ sentiments, as Joaquín Cosío has more than proven himself as a skilled actor over the past few decades. For years, the celebrated Mexican performer has played key roles on both the big and small screens. A Better Life, Quantum of Solace, Savages and The Suicide Squad are only a few of the credits he has under his belt. In Gentified, he manages to breathe incredible life into Casimiro, the proud and loving patriarch of the Morales family. And his performance only ramps up in Season 2, as Pop faces the prospect of deportation.

Joaquín Cosío as Pop on Gentefied

(Image credit: Netflix)

J.J. Soria, who plays goofy but well-meaning new dad Erik, also had praise for his prolific co-star. Though he also gave props to all of their collaborators for their contributions to the show:

I love working with [Joaquín], I know that, with everyone. Our whole team just feels like a solid, talented group. I’d be lying to you if I said some specific thing that I learned, I didn’t. But it was a great experience nonetheless.

Veteran actors can really serve as a source of comfort for younger performers, especially for those who are in the early years of their careers. Carlos Santos, who fans know as the wisecracking Chris, also made note of Joaquín Cosío and reflected on how his presence and that of other stars helped him adjust: 

I think with Joaquín… the first season, it was a big deal for me because it was my first shot at a series regular role, so I was coming into like [confused noise]. And whatever I absorbed from that when we started the second season, I just felt the difference in just the way that everything worked, and that’s a testament to just being there on set and just absorbing, like Karrie was saying, just absorbing that energy.

The actor also took a moment to shout out co-star J.J. Soria, who’s appeared in various films and TV shows over the years. While his co-stars playfully referred to him as a “back-up veteran,” it’s clear they have plenty of respect for him. You can’t underestimate how invaluable it is to have seasoned talent around you, whether it be the stars in front of the camera like Joaquín Cosío or those behind it like director and EP America Ferrera. And based on their work, it’s clear that the three leads are taking full advantage of their colleagues’ knowledge. 

Gentefied Season 2 is now available to stream on Netflix. Also, be sure to check out CinemaBlend’s 2021 fall TV schedule for more on the shows that are returning and premiering by the end of the year.

Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.