Jaime Camil Talks Dream Come True Series Lotería Loca, SAG-AFTRA Strike & Possible Jane The Virgin Reunion

Jaime Camil is fulfilling a longtime dream of bringing a beloved Mexican game to American audiences. He will host and executive produce the upcoming new CBS series Lotería Loca, premiering Monday, Oct. 2 at 9 p.m.

“Lotería has been around for around 400 years and it’s played by 40 million people every day. It’s a ‘must have’ game for many Latin American families. It’s like Bingo and we’ve changed it up a little for television purposes,” Camil tells Deadline. An exclusive look at how the TV version will be played can be found in the video above.

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He continued, “We made some adjustments and now it’s more like Bingo but without forgetting the heritage of the [original game]. We also made the characters on the cards fun and animated; they come alive. Each card also has a monetary value, which is different from the original game.”

Lotería Loca proudly embraces its Latino roots with its celebratory vibe. The series will be a hybrid of “a game show, a variety show and a late-night show” with the legendary Sheila E. serving as the house band’s leader.

“This a CBS show airing on prime time following the Price Is Right At Night. The show is made for a mainstream audience [and among those viewers] are people from underserved communities who will feel represented and who will be proud. This show is for everybody,” Camil shared.

“It’s super special and we designed it to be 100 times better than just sitting down and marking cards on a Lotería board. It’s also been really cool and exciting bringing the game to life, which I credit to Jeff Apploff, who is a master when it comes to game shows.”

“I am more excited about this show than anything I’ve done in a long time, and the reason is that it’s so different than anything on TV. It’s loud, it’s colorful, it’s rooted in culture and it delivers to an underserved audience,” shared Apploff, creator and executive producer of the series as well as CEO of Apploff Entertainment.

The series is produced by Warner Bros. Unscripted Television in association with Warner Horizon and Apploff Entertainment.

As emotional as Camil is to release Loteria Loca, he says the moment is “bittersweet” as his union, SAG-AFTRA, is still on strike. Loteria Loca is produced under a separate contract that incorporates the terms of the 2021-2024 SAG-AFTRA Network Code which is currently active and not struck.

“It’s a bittersweet moment, you know? The feelings about watching a show with so much excitement, being grateful to the universe and being thankful that I’m working. It’s such a bittersweet sentiment, right?” Camil, who supported the WGA and SAG-AFTRA joining the pickets on multiple occasions, said.

“There’s still things to be resolved when it comes to our contracts and we still need to get a better and fair contract and better things. So you know, on one side, I’m super happy about the show. And on the other side, I’m like, wow, I really wish my brothers and sisters from the unions that are struggling right now get fair deals,” he continued.

And while it’s as yet unknown when SAG-AFTRA will return to the table with the AMPTP to continue negotiations, Camil hopes a fair deal is not far away. And maybe sometime in the future, a reunion with his Jane the Virgin castmates for an official small-screen project.

“That’s Jennie Urman’s decision. I don’t think [a Rogelio] spin-off is a good idea but I think what she wanted to do was revisit the show 10 years after in a 10-episode limited series,” he explained. “It would show where all the characters from Jane the Virgin after 10 years or something. As you know, Jennie is always full of great ideas and she’s an amazing producer. It wouldn’t be like the Friends reunion though. I really hope she does that.”

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