El Rosario has assembled some of Austin’s finest local talent. These artists have come together with their own life experiences and backgrounds to bring the characters of El Rosario to life and captivate you.
Joseph Thomas was born in Winfield, Illinois. A graduate of Mission High School, class of 1991, Joseph Thomas started acting in high school, where he took part in many plays for his drama class. His desire to fulfill his dream of being an actor brought him to Austin, Texas and in the early 2000’s he landed his first gig that would change his life forever. Joseph Thomas was hired on as an extra in the movie “The Alamo.” He later became a featured extra performing various stunts, and was one of the Davey Crockett Executioners. His range of skills span from acting, voiceover, stunts, lighting, sound, writing, editing. Recently, he starred in a video for the very popular Accordion Player & Vocalist Aniceto Molina. He received The Merit Award for Best Supporting Actor at Indie Fest 2009 for the role of Benito in Guilty. Sin City 1 & 2 , Machete & Machete Kills, Spy Kids 4, Friday Night Lights the Movie & More recently he has worked on Dusk til Dawn (TV series). You can see him in Queen of the South, Cagers, Harbinger and the ABC series, American Crime written & produced by writer John Ridley writer of (12yrs A Slave).
Born and raised in Houston,TX, Kelly Medina is a Latin American actress and singer. Coming from a musically talented family that stems from Santa Cruz, Bolivia, she is the grand-daughter of Bolivian radio legend, Lorgio Arauz. With a passion for the arts, Kelly began to practice her craft at the very young age of 8 with school plays and musicals. Through the trials and tribulations of a rough upbringing, Kelly found comfort and an escape from her home life on stage. By age 18, she won Tommy Tunes “Best Actress” award, an award created by TUTS that recognizes excellence in musical theatre by high school students in the greater Houston area. She was the first Latina to receive this recognition and marked a turning point in her perseverance in the arts. After a short break to obtain a bachelors of science from the University of Texas at Austin, Kelly transitioned from theatre to film upon being hired on the set of “Our Brand is Crisis” as a Bolivian protestor. Her first lead roles were in a short film called “Listen,” a web series lead on “Retribution” as Lilith followed by the role of Luz Gutierrez in “El Rosario.” Kelly shows no signs of stopping yet, and currently lives and continues her acting career in Austin, TX.
Rebeca McKnight is from Mexico City. As a child and all the way through her young adulthood years, she loved to perform, sing and do interpretive dance for her Grandmother. She came from Mexico to reside in the United States in 1993, where she began performing in public, participating in plays at local churches and in Hyde Park Theater, in Austin, as Ms. Malone, in The Day the Coloreds Integrated. She has attended improvisation and audition workshops at The Institution Theater, taken acting classes at BriteLites Acting Studio, The Actors Arena, where she was coached by the fabulous Terry Kiser, The Arena Conservatory and at the Actor’s School, where she has taken singing classes. Being on set as an extra (in TV series like From Dusk Till Dawn, and The Son, and in a couple of commercials,) has provided her with some rich practical knowledge of what acting for TV is. Being part of El Rosario is a dream come true for her. She feels her character, Ofelia, fits her “como anillo al dedo.” Rebeca is very appreciative of the warmth that she has experienced while working and spending time with the great cast and the welcoming crew of El Rosario.
Mayra Veronica Gonzalez (Veronica) was born in the city of Dolores Hidalgo Guanajuato Mexico. She is 24 years old and has two older sisters and a younger brother. Her family immigrated to the United States when she was eight years old. Moving to this country was an intimidating and gratifying experience providing a challenge to adapt to the culture and learn the language.
From a very young age the world of modeling and acting captured her attention, and she began to model at the age of 15. She moved to Austin at the age of 19 when her passion for acting came alive. She attended acting classes and workshops and was cast in multiple TV commercials for HEB, Gattis Pizza, Mary-Kay, Verizon, Elite Fitness and All-star Mitsubishi. She has also worked on multiple TV shows, including American Crime, Urban Cowboy and Crunch Time. More recently she has been featured as an extra in multiple episodes of Robert Rodriguez’s Dusk til Dawn.
Her mother, Laura, is one of her biggest influences and taught her the value of hard work, sticking to your values and preserving her Hispanic culture. Veronica is currently working on her communications degree while continuing to take acting classes to further her career in the entertainment industry.
Introducing our junior actors:
Akiana “Aki” Sky Ramirez was born in 2012 in Austin, Texas. Her parents are Ruben and Erica Ramirez, writer/director/producers of El Rosario. Akiana enjoys riding her bike, dancing and drawing pictures of her family. In El Rosario, she plays Alma, the daughter of Luz. She is making her acting debut and enjoyed having a “movie” mom.
Azariah “Azi” Herrera was born in 2007 in Austin, Texas. His parents are Michael and Nancy and he is the nephew of Ruben and Erica Ramirez, the director and producers of El Rosario. This is Azi’s first role and he plays Carlos, the son of Luz. Azi enjoys playing video games and has a passion for basketball. Someday he would like to become a professional basketball player and after his successful time on set as a part of this film, he is considering acting in his future as well.
Faith Gracelyn Ramirez was born in 2007 in Austin, Texas. Her parents are Ruben and Erica Ramirez, writer/director/producers of El Rosario. Faith loves playing with her dog, rollerblading, singing Bruno Mars songs and is constantly working on DIY crafts. In El Rosario, she plays Faith, Mando’s daughter. She is making her acting debut in this short film and wants to be a fashion designer when she grows up.
We also want to include “Root Beer” in the cast list, the classic Impala lowrider that plays an important role in the film. Thank you to Rob Mize for allowing your Impala to be a part of this production.