Isabel the Fairy Godmother

This post is also available in: Spanish

Here is some fun news from Chandra, Isabel’s beloved assistant. They had a lot of fun in sunny Los Angeles on the set of Jane the Virgin. Here’s the best part, the episode that Isabel appears in is airing this Friday, November 17th at 9pm on The CW. Those are the facts, now here is the gossip:

Gina Rodriguez (Jane) and Isabel


A few weeks ago, Isabel and I arrived on the Jane the Virgin set, a nondescript building in LA, not knowing what to expect. Isabel hadn’t been on a TV or movie set since 1988, when she visited the set of The House of the Spirits in Denmark (and before that the telenovela sets of Venezuela in the 1970s), so this was a whole new experience.

Isabel had been invited to play herself in a cameo appearance after Jane finally realizes her dream of becoming a published author. Jane has mentioned Isabel several times on the show—Isabel is the character’s favorite author—so we were so excited to bring the real Isabel into Jane’s life.

ohhhh, hair and makeup time!


We arrived during an LA heat wave, sweaty and bedraggled, dragging our suitcases behind us and feeling less than glamorous. That soon changed when we found ourselves in the costume department, where Isabel was measured and shown racks of fabulous clothes and walls of sparkly jewelry. This was followed by a whirlwind week of hours in the hair and make-up chairs—a shout-out to the wonderful hair and makeup crew—being photographed, eating craft services, van rides back and forth to the hotel, filming scenes with the fabulous Gina Rodriguez, going off on location, and above all meeting and being taken care of by some of the hardest working people in TV. (And waiting, there was lots of waiting.)

Isabel with Petra, Yael Grobas and writer Michah Shraft


the two grandmothers, Isabel and Ivonne Coll


Xo, Andrea Navedo and Isabel


We met Andrea Navedo (Xo, charming and kind), Jaime Camil (quite similar to his character of Rogelio), Yael Grobas (Petra and her evil twin, Isabel’s favorite characters on the show), Ivonne Coll (Abuela; a calming presence, she helped Isabel learn her lines in a crunch), and of course Gina Rodriguez who was as sweet and funny as Jane. Unfortunately, Justin Baldoni was away; his wife was having a baby, which was bad timing for us as meeting him was my main reason for tagging along. Maybe someday, Rafael…I mean, congrats on the new baby, Justin!

Isabel did really well under the direction of Melanie Mayron, and the writers Carolina Rivera and Michah Shraft wrote a fun script. Tune in this Friday to catch our girl in her first—and last—U.S. telenovela appearance. Her last because (you can probably guess) Dulce wasn’t invited to the set.

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