February 21, 2019 / 7:54 AM

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Selena Gomez & Freeform Team Up For New Latina Drama Series Similar to Fox's 'Empire'



Selena Gomez might be known for topping the music charts and gracing both the small and big screen, but this time she's looking to do a little work behind the scenes. Gomez has been recruited to executive producer a new Latina drama series on Freeform (formerly ABC Family), alongside co-producer Aaron Kaplan. The untitled series is said to be similar to FOX's hip hop drama Empire.

The forthcoming project is currently in development. It's set in a low income predominantly Latino neighborhood and told through the eyes of an 18-year-old girl eager to become a big star, according to a recent Deadline report. The series is inspired by true-life events that happened to Los Angeles high school senior, Ana Cobarrubias.

Cobarrubias is expected to act as a consultant on the project. Both Gomez and Kaplan will produce the series through his Kapital Entertainment production company. The "Hands to Myself" singer will also have a little taste of home on set. Mandy Teefey, Gomez's mom, will reportedly be involved in the project, but specifics about her role has yet to be revealed.

Cobarrubias caught the attention of many, including Kaplan, when she delivered a powerful speech at the Zimmer Children's Museum Discovery Award Dinner last November. Her speech focused on her East LA upbringing and her determination to make a difference in the community and exceed society's low expectations of anyone who comes from similar circumstances. She captivated the audiences, which ultimately led to a standing ovation.

The 23-year-old reigning queen of Instagram will not be starring in the series. Gomez and her mother were also tapped to executive produce a 13-episode series for Netflix based on the popular young adult novel, 13 Reasons Why. Oscar Award winner, Tom McCarthy, is set to direct the first two episodes.

Kaplan, who is no stranger to working with Freeform, is also keeping busy with a new comedy series based on Nicki Minaj's childhood. The project recently shot a pilot, directed by Ride Along's Tim Story.

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