‘The Walking Dead’ Spinoff Adds Ruben Blades and Elizabeth Rodriguez to Cast

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AMC’s The Walking Dead kicked off its first season in the midst of a pretty effin scary zombie apocalypse, and over 67 episodes they’ve done a pretty good job of mining that premise. But wouldn’t it also be pretty effin’ scary to see exactly how human civilization disintegrated at the hands of flesh-eating zombie automatons in the months prior? Well, AMC is betting it will with their upcoming companion series Fear the Walking Dead, and who better to drive home the point than salsa legend Rubén Blades?

Yes, you read correctly, Rubén Blades has been cast in one of the series’ starring roles and by all accounts will not be performing Latin standards such as “Tiburón” and “Pedro Navaja” for legions of marauding zombies. He will, however, be playing Daniel, the father of Ofelia, played by inexplicably swarthy Swedish actress Mercedes Mason.

Of course, this comes as no surprise given that Blades has made a rather enviable career for himself as an actor since his breakout role in Leon Ichaso’s 1985 feature Crossover Dreams, and more recently in Ridley Scott’s critically panned The Counselor, but never has the sonero found himself scrambling to survive the total breakdown of society.

Oh, and the fiesta doesn’t stop there. Playing Daniel’s wife Griselda, is Mexican grande dame Patricia Reyes Spíndola, who may be best known to U.S. audiences for her turn as Matilde Kahlo in Julie Taymor’s biopic Frida. Then there’s our homegirl Elizabeth Rodríguez — better known as the tough love mom Aleida Díaz on Orange is the New Black — who will have a chance to expand her dramatic range in the role of Liza, a free-spirited bohemian mom still reeling from a difficult divorce.

Details about the upcoming series are still pretty vague, but we can certainly expect more information closer to the series’ August premiere. Until then, we can just keep listening to our Rubén Blades records.

Fear the Walking Dead season 1 premieres in August of 2015.