Francia Raisa: Everything is a Journey

By Jenny Lynn Castro

Francia Raisa
Photo by Jeff Vespa/@portraits

Francia Raisa is a versatile and skilled actress who has appeared in several films and television shows. Currently starring as “Valentina” in Hulu’s new hit series “How I Met Your Father,” Raisa is excited to be a part of the new series and describes her character as “fun, flirty, and vibrant!”

“The show is about a group of friends navigating life in their 30s looking for love while simultaneously attempting to achieve in their separate occupations,” she adds.

Raisa is a first-generation American with a mixed background: her mother is Mexican, and her father is Honduran. Born and raised in California, Raisa grew up in a home where Spanish was the dominant language, while English was something she picked up in school.

“I am half-Mexican, half Hondureña, first-generation American,” she shares. “Being Latin is my life. I didn’t realize I was American until maybe I was in high school, but I also didn’t know anything else until I was three or four years old. I spoke one language at home. I ate one type of food. I listened to one kind of music, and then I went to school, and all of a sudden, it was a whole other language, and they were giving me food without tortillas. So navigating both worlds has been my life, and I still do it until this day.”

Raisa’s dreams of becoming an actress began when she was a child. Ever since she was five, she watched novelas, and would tell her grandma, “I’m going to do that someday.”  Raisa took up dancing while growing up, and her athletic dance background can be seen in her first film, “Bring It On: All or Nothing,” from 2006, in which she plays a cheerleader. Other notable work includes the series, “The Secret Life of an American Teenager” which she starred in from 2008-2013, “Life-Size 2: A Christmas Eve,” which she starred in from 2018, and the show “Grown-ish,” in which she plays the role of Ana Torres.

When recalling her favorite projects she has worked on, Raisa shares different memories. For instance, she danced in her first film, “Bring It On,” and had the opportunity to meet Rihanna and the rest of Destiny’s Child. Raisa has also dabbled in comedy.

“I can go on about the love of my projects, but currently, “How I Met Your Father,” in particular, is a dream come true,” she shares. “One, I’m more confident in my craft, and I get to play Hilary Duff’s best friend. “I hope you love the new show, and I am excited to bring more to the table.” Some words of wisdom for her fans, “Just what Rita Moreno told me, “Study, study, study,” It’s not one of those things where you can wake up one day and expect to be successful. Everything is a journey.”

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