EFEBy Antoni Belchi Miami

U.S. actress of Mexican descent Eva Longoria admits she has sometimes felt rejected by the Latino community because she didn't speak Spanish "perfectly," so she had to improve her command of the language so she wouldn't feel "undervalued."

"It's very difficult to live in our community if you don't speak Spanish - everyone will judge you," Longoria said in an interview with EFE in Miami just before the launch of her new series "Telenovela" on the U.S. network NBC.

For that reason, the star of "Desperate Housewives (2004-2012) believes that many second- and third-generation Latinos, who hardly speak any Spanish, will identify with the story of Ana Sofia, the character she plays in "Telenovela," the NBC prime-time comedy that premieres next Monday.

Another cast member, the Cuban-American Jencarlos Canela ("Mas Sabe el Diablo"), added that in the U.S.A. "a lot of Latinos don't speak Spanish perfectly and feel rejected in our community," which is why he believes that "these people ought to be represented" on television.

The actress, also the show's executive producer through her company UnbeliEVAble, said it wasn't "hard" to convince NBC execs to launch the project.

"It's not a novela, it's in English, but we're into all kinds of subjects like falling in and out of love, divorce, insecurity of all kinds," Longoria said, who plays a popular actress striving to maintain her superstar status despite the passing of time.

With "Telenovela," Longoria and UnbeliEVAble seek once again to win an Anglo audience with very Latino characters and outlooks, following the hit achieved by "Devious Maids" (2013-2015), a series on the Lifetime channel about five Hispanic housekeepers working in Beverly Hills.

Besides Longoria and Canela, the cast includes such well-known Latino actors as Amaury Nolasco ("Prison Break") and Diana Maria Riva ("What Women Want").

"It's a really passionate, dramatic world, but with a lot of laughs and so much fun," said Canela, who knows the world of telenovelas well from acting in series like "Pasion Prohibida" (2013) and "Pecados Ajenos" (2007).