It’s been over six months since we last heard about Nickelodeon’s live-action take on the globe-trotting Dora the Explorer. Outside of a funny attempt by FunnyorDie, no one had heard who would be cast as Dora, the young woman who travels the world alongside her monkey companion, Boots, and her cousin, Diego. Well, now we know that 16-year-old actress Isabela Moner will be strapping on Dora’s backpack and we sought out to learn some interesting facts you can share about the new Dora the Explorer!
Dora the Explorer hits theaters August 2, 2019.
Moner was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio and is Peruvian on her mother’s side. Growing up, Moner exclusively spoken Spanish. “I grew up surrounded by food, traditions, books, and music in Spanish.” Unfortunately this led to Moner struggling to learn English and made her resistant to speaking Spanish in the future; “My teachers thought I was ‘slow’ because I was very bad at grammar.” When she had the language under her belt, though, Moner embraced her Spanish side. Her Peruvian roots run deep, as evidenced by her Instagram account, which celebrates finding Peruvian food. “I wish I could say I was 100% Peruvian; I have always felt I am,” she said in a YouTube video.
She starred in 'Evita' on Broadway at age 10
At the tender age of 10 Moner got the opportunity of a lifetime, playing a small role in Evita on Broadway. Her role, according to the show’s Playbill, is simply “girl,” but it gave the actress her first stage experience. And, to only increase the pressure, she got to sing with fellow Evita co-star Ricky Martin. She has only good things to say about Martin, posting a tweet about his compassion during their last performance.
She's got quite the filmography brewing this year
Last year Moner starred in the summer action vehicle Transformers: The Last Knight and she’s not wasting any time. This June you can see her opposite Benicio del Toro and Josh Brolin inSicario: Day of the Soldado, the sequel to the 2015 film Sicario. She recently wrapped filming on the Mark Wahlberg comedy Instant Family, where she’ll play opposite Octavia Spencer. And, of course, she’ll also have the role of Dora the Explorer after that.
She cares about current events
Moner has shown her love and support for a multitude of causes, predominately helping the environment and supporting gun violence. She’s posted declarations of love for the Parkland survivors in both English and Spanish, and, to celebrate Earth Day, she showed a video of monkeys and asked that people shown a greater kindness for Mother Earth. In March, she showed her support for single mothers of Peru, many of whom are children. There’s little surprise why she got the role of Dora considering she’s more than proven herself a teen passionate about her causes.
She's a Selena fan
Isabela Moner knows who the Queen is! A month ago, in honor of Tejano superstar Selena’s birthday, Moner posted a sweet tribute to the singer who she cites as an “inspiration” to her. Moner praises Selena’s connection to her roots, something Moner is passionate about, and it’s just cool to see newer, younger generations still share a love for all things Selena!