What Can’t Stephanie Beatriz Do?
Stephanie Beatriz, best known for playing detective Rosa Diaz in the Fox TV show, “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” is an accomplished actress with 61 acting credits since 2009 and eight awards for her performances. Most recently, she played Carla in the 2021 film version of “In the Heights” and Mirabel in Disney’s newest animated feature,“Encanto” — both of which show off the actress' singing skills.
While the entire “Encanto” soundtrack was nominated for Best Original Score at the Academy Awards, “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” specifically charted at No. 1 on the Billboard 100 for several weeks in a row now — the first Disney song to do so in 30 years.
So, what's next for this trending celeb? At 41, she is forging ahead with new projects and stepping out of her comfort zone, all the while setting an example for girls and women of all ages.
She Moved to the U.S. at Age 2
Stephanie Beatriz was born in Argentina and moved to Texas at age 2 with her Colombian father and Bolivian mother.
She became a United States citizen at age 18.
She Got Into Acting to Save Money
She joined her high school choir because, unlike many other activities, there were no related fees. Believe it or not, the choir director suggested that maybe speech and debate would better suit her talents.
She soon segued from there to theater.
Her Middle School Crush Mistook Her for Her Brother
Her acting skills were so good that when she played a male villain in her middle school play, a classmate asked her to extend his compliments to her brother on his performance. (She doesn’t have a brother.)
She told Buzzfeed she didn’t know how to react, so she said thank you and that she would pass on the compliment. This made her think that maybe she could be an actor.
Her Background Is in Dramatic Theater
After graduating college, she lived for nine years in New York, traveling often for regional theater.
Most of her roles were in plays by Shakespeare and other classics.
She Had Several Minor Television Roles
She got her start in television playing minor roles in "The Closer" and "Southland" as well as a recurring role in "Modern Family" as Gloria’s sister Sonia.
She told Backstage that working in television took time to get used to because it was so different than theater, especially the necessity of hitting your mark (where you need to stand in order to be in the shot).
She Is Almost Legally Blind
She has severe astigmatism but rarely wears her glasses onscreen.
She has had trouble wearing contact lenses and has admitted on Twitter that she has often missed her marks because she couldn’t see them, even though they were large and hot pink.
She’s Had Some Interesting Jobs
When asked about her most memorable job, Beatriz told Backstage it was working as a guide to a corn maze in Queens, New York.
Her job was to give customers instructions and then travel through the maze helping those who had not listened and were now lost.
She Was Broke When Cast in ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’
She admitted to Build Series that, when she got the role in “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” she had only $50 in her bank account and was teaching workout classes.
She Pined for a Comedic Role
After moving to Los Angeles in 2010, she was hoping for a comedic role in television on a show like "Parks and Recreation."
When telling her about the audition for a role on "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," her agent told her it was from the same people who write "Parks and Rec."
She Didn’t Think There Was Room for More Than One Latina
She auditioned for the role of Amy Santiago in "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" and was asked to come back for that role and also for the role of Megan (this name was changed to Rosa after she got the role).
When she heard Melissa Fumero was cast as Amy, she cried; she was certain two Latinas would not be cast for the same show.
She’s Bad at Improv
While there was quite a bit of ad-libbing on the show, Beatriz told HuffPost that she is “notoriously horrible” at it.
She told BUILD Series that it took her three seasons to get comfortable with the idea.
Her Real Voice Is Nothing Like Rosa’s
Beatriz’ voice is about an octave higher than Rosa's. Also, unlike the character she plays on
"Brooklyn Nine-Nine," she is upbeat and laughs easily.
In a Variety interview, she shows how easily she can slip into Rosa’s voice and admits that it does confuse people when they hear her real voice.
She Came Out as Bisexual on Twitter
Beatriz replied to a tweet about falling in love with both girls and guys with one simple word, “Yup.”
Since then she has been a vocal advocate for the LBGTQ community. She wrote in GQ that she takes her marriage vows to a heterosexual man “very seriously — till death do us part. But I’ll be bi till the day I die.”
Her Eyebrow Scar Has Prompted Intrigue
Beatriz has a distinctive scar on her right eyebrow that serves to enhance her tough image as Rosa Diaz. She revealed how she got the scar on Twitter: It was either a Lego or a knife fight.
When promoting "LEGO Movie 2," she confessed the whole truth to Collider: After refusing to clean up a pile of Legos in her room when she was 10 or 11, she tripped over some and fell. The scar is the lasting result of that accident.
She Has an Eating Disorder
She wrote in Instyle about being a “disordered eater.” She says that particularly around the time of photoshoots, she searched for things wrong with her body, then used food as both a remedy and a punishment, in cycles of restricting and bingeing.
She shared that she had to work to get better, admitting that it is hard, every day.
She Met Her Husband on a Dating Site
She told Vulture that there’s no way she would have met her husband if it weren't for on a dating site because “he’s just completely outside of my world that I built in Los Angeles.”
After just a few messages, she knew she wanted to know what kind of person he really was and suggested they meet in real life.
She Used to Dress Just Like Rosa
She used to wear a leather jacket all the time but started to dress differently after “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” so that people wouldn’t think she was dressing like her character.
She Learned to Direct by Studying Directors
After an internal battle when Season 6 was saved, she gathered the courage to ask to direct an episode. While she had no qualifications, she had been secretly shadowing the show's episodic directors for more than 200 episodes, in a sort of “master class” of her own design.
She got her chance and, in February 2019, directed the episode “He Said, She Said.”
Her Film Debut Addressed a Serious Topic
She stars in the 2017 indie feature film, "The Light of the Moon," a drama that tells the story of sexual assault and the road to recovery from the victim’s point of view.
Reviews in both The Hollywood Reporter and Varietypraised her performance, and the film won the 2017 Audience Award for Narrative Feature Competition at the South by Southwest Film Festival.
She Is an Accomplished Voice Actor
Playing Mirabel Madrigal in "Encanto"was not her first animated voiceover. She has also voiced animated characters in many television series, including "Bob’s Burgers" and "Duck Tales" as well as in several movies such as Gertie in "Ice Age: Collision Course" and General Sweet Mayhem in "The Lego Movie 2: the Second Part."
She tells Daily Republic that voiceover acting is a dream come true, admitting that as a child she used a Fisher Price tape recorder to make radio shows in which she played all the roles herself.
She Worked Right Up to Delivery Day
Though she didn’t tell anyone at the time, she was in labor when she recorded “Waiting on a Miracle” for "Encanto."
Fortunately, this performance was the final take that ended up in the movie; her daughter was born the next day.
Having a Daughter Changed Her Focus
After having a daughter, her focus on appearance has changed. She told Cosmopolitan that, while she used to worry about her appearance and how she looked in dresses, she now is more concerned about how her daughter will feel in her body.
Beatriz also looks at her own body differently and now celebrates it for what it can do.
She Gets Excited About Food
When Cosmopolitan asked her on Oscar night about who she hoped to meet at a post-party, who was her “pie-in-the-sky person,” her reply was “the pie.” It seems that the running joke about how hungry people are at the annual awards show has some truth to it.
On her list: burgers, In-N-Out, chicken nuggets and pizza.
She Is a Podcaster
Beatriz hosts relationship podcasts "Twin Flames"and "Reality Bites" and also has roles in a few audio series.
She plays a lone Latina Texas Ranger in "Tejana," a fictional, true-crime drama. (She also is working to bring this series to television.) Plus, she stars in the 12-episode audio drama "SOLAR," a sci-fi thriller that launched in March 2022.
A West End Performance Was on Her Bucket List
She made her London West End debut in December 2021 in the second run of "2:22 A Ghost Story"at the Gielgud Theatre. She told Sky News that she loved the script and chose to end the year with this role, largely because it was something she’d never done before.
Her character in the play (Lauren) is very different from those her fans know.
She Appreciates Her Fans
Speaking of fans, she enjoys connecting with them and is mostly fine with fans approaching her. She told the Independent that many ask her to “do the Rosa thing.”
While she is happy to oblige with a snarl, she says that it would be nice if everyone were more polite and asked rather than demand the angry face.
She Is a Huge Dolly Parton Fan
She loves “anything Dolly” and said that the first time she was in the singer’s presence she understood what it meant to be star-struck.
She told Buzzfeed that she met Parton backstage at Rockefeller Center when she was on a morning show. When Dolly walked past her after her segment, Beatriz found herself unable to speak.
Mirabel Is the Character She's Most Like
Beatriz says that voicing a Disney character was a dream come true, but she says that this role was special because it shows that anyone can be a hero. She told Looper that Mirabel is more like her than other characters she has played.
This is true not only in appearance and voice but also in that they both grew up feeling like outsiders.
She Had to Pass Up the ‘She Hulk’ Role
Beatriz was interested in playing the title role in "She Hulk," but due to scheduling conflicts with "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," she removed her name from consideration.
She was, however, impressed with some fan art, asking on Twitter how she could get her arms to resemble those in the picture.
She Is Unapologetically Real
She is refreshingly sincere in promoting body positivity.
While she does have posed “glamour” shots in her Instagram feed, she also has untouched selfies including one with the comment: “Don't even care about my visible acne (side note; you are not your acne!).”
Costume and Prop SNAFUs Can’t Stop Her
She lost the entire nail of her thumb during a stage performance of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" when she closed a makeup box on her hand but had to continue the scene while trying not to let her thumb bleed all over the set.
She described this “worst moment” for the Chicago Tribune, which also included a stuck zipper and an important prop going AWOL.