in plain view principal cast   who's who
Rene Lavan


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Originally from Artemisa, Havana, Cuba, Rene Lavan debuted on Broadway in 2005 with the critically acclaimed play "Latinologues," a comedy about life in America. Early this year he worked with Benicio Del Toro on the feature film "Guerrilla" directed by Steven Soderbergh. Rene plays the young lead in Revolution Studio's "Christmas With The Kranks" starring opposite Tim Allen, Jamie Lee Curtis, Dan Aykroyd and Cheech Marin. This film is directed by Joe Roth. He plays the role of the Revolutionary, Carlos Suarez, on LGF-Miramax's "Havana Nights, Dirty Dancing." Rene has been a guest-star on CBS's "CSI Miami" and on NBC's "Las Vegas." He co-stars in "El Nominado," an independent film shot in Chile in October 2003, now playing at many international film festivals. Rene was chosen as one of "The Top Ten To Watch In 2004" by the San Diego Latino Film Festival.

American audiences were first introduced to Rene when he played the role of Javier on ABC's "One Life to Live." It was while working as a cast member on this series that he was offered the role of a lifetime, as the lead in the critically acclaimed feature film "Bitter Sugar," directed by Leon Ichaso (Piñero, El Cantante). Orestes Matacena, "Bitter Sugar" writer, showed Leon Ichaso a picture of Rene which led to casting him as the lead. The film was inspired by true events of the oppressive Cuban regime governed by dictator and tyrant Fidel Castro. It chronicles the character of Gustavo (Rene) an honor student and former Castro supporter who could no longer tolerate the decay and repression in his beloved Cuba. Rene received rave reviews and the film was very well received worldwide.

As an actor Rene gained recognition co-starring in one of the most popular Spanish soap operas ever, "Morelia." He has since starred in the very popular soaps "Maria Belen" and "Enamorada." He has become an internationally reknown actor and is a household name in Spanish speaking homes around the world. His soaps and films have been seen in over one hundred countries. Fluent in both English and Spanish Rene has been working steadily in both the American and Spanish markets since receiving his education at the prestigious New World School of the Arts, Performance and Visual Arts Center and with Uta Hagen.

Audinces have seen Rene appear in hundreds of television and radio commercials and seen him host the following TV shows: "The Billboard Music Awards," "Fox Sports" and "Sueños de Fama," (Spanish Star Search) to name a few.

Rene has also graced the pages of American publications such as "Vanity Fair," "Harper's Bazaar," "Details," "W" and hundreds of Spanish publications such as "Vanidades," "Cosmopolitan," "Cristina" and recently was named "one of the 25 most beautiful people" of People Magazine (Spanish Version).

Rene is a true crossover actor in every sense of the word, from film to television, from drama to comedy. He is one of the few actors that have successfully made a name in both the American and Spanish Markets. His latest endeavor is starring and producing Latino theme television shows and films for his newly formed production company.

  Ruth Livier

Ruth was a series regular on Showtime’s groundbreaking drama "Resurrection Blvd." Among her guest-starring and recurring television credits are: "Mission Road," "Haunted," "NYPD Blue," "According to Jim," "Becker," "King of the Hill," "The Pretender," "Beverly Hills 90210," "Soldier of Fortune," "Profiles," AND "Reyes y Rey."

Recently Ruth has completed production of the following independent feature projects: Orestes Matacena's (Azucar Amarga/Bitter Sugar) “In Plain View” opposite Rene Lavan, “Ranchero” opposite "Spy Kid’s" Danny Trejo, Joseph Merhi’s “Oranges” starring opposite Tom Sizemore, Richard T. Jones & Heather Locklear and a leading role in the comedy “Haunting Passions.”

Some of Ruth's theatre credits include work at the Kirk Douglas Theatre "A Perfect Wedding," South Coast Repertory "Lovers & Executioners," Long Beach Opera "The Indian Queen," The Met "Sexo, Pudor y Lagrimas," East LA Classic Theater "A Midsummer Night’s Dream," The Wiltern "Latinologues," Mark Taper Forum "NWF." Ruth also toured with Mexico’s premiere comedian, Eugenio Derbéz, in Rick Najera’s "Latinologues."

Ruth has been featured in prominent publications: TV Guide, EMMY Magazine, People Magazine (Spanish version), Latino Leaders, Hispanic. Ruth has earned a Best Actress ALMA Awards nomination and a win for "Resurrection Boulevard," she received special recognition by the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, the Viva Los Niños award from the March of Dimes, the Breakthrough in Entertainment Industry recognition from Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante and the NAMIC Legacy Award (Resurrection Boulevard.)

Ruth is a founding member of Inside Out, a successful after-school program for at-risk youth. She has been a keynote speaker at the Latina Youth Conference and the Hispanic Lifestyle Conference, a presenter at the NAMIC and the IMAGEN awards, MC’d several events including the TEJANO MUSIC Awards with Tony Plana and the NALIP conference with Cristian de la Fuente and Nicholas Gonzalez.

As a producer Ruth was invited to tour her original bilingual game-show BECA at the 2006 Edward James Olmos Latino Book & Family Festival. Among her participating celebrity guests have been Tony Plana (Ugly Betty), Dave Foley (Kids in the Hall), Florinda Meza (Chespirito), Nicholas Gonzalez (The OC), Valente Rodriguez (George Lopez) and Rene Lavan (Maria Belen) who stars in the movie "In Plain View."

Ruth proudly sponsors and supports CCF (The Christian Children’s Fund) and the ONE Campaign.


Ruben Rabasa

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Ruben was born in Havana, Cuba, on April 13th, 1938. In 1955, he emigrated to the US and lived in New York City for 20 years.

Ruben's artistic career started with the group, "Añorada Cuba" (The Yearning of Cuba) directed by Esteban Alvarez. This group guided him into the arts, where he took his first steps in song and dance, which he had done for a few years in the famous 5th Avenue parades in New York City, proudly representing the Cuban people, especially those living in America.

During that period, Ruben took acting classes with actor, director and teacher Miguel Ponce, dancing with prima ballerina Margarita Parla and singing at the Carnegie Hall Conservatory. On the weekends Ruben went ballroom dancing at the most prestigious ballroom dance venues in New York City.

In “The New York Theater of the Americas” Ruben performed in numerous plays and became one of the executives of the company, founded by Miguel Ponce and Orestes Matacena.

Years later, Ruben, Clara Hernandez and Orestes Matacena joined the founder of the "Cuban Cultural Center of New York," Ivan Acosta, established the Cultural Institution. In the theater division, Ruben performed as an actor in many of their plays.

In the beginning of February 1977, Ruben flew to the Dominican Republic to star in his first movie entitled “Los Gusanos,” (The Worms) where he played the part of a commando leader infiltrating Cuba to rescue a political prisoner.

Ruben returned to the Dominican Republic in 1978 to play a priest in his second movie, “Guaguasi,” about Fidel Castro's rise to power and establishment of his tyranny in 1959.

Upon his return to New York, Ruben shot two more movies entitled “Bla-Bla-Bla” with Guillermo Alvarez-Guedez and “3-K-3” opposite the famous Cuban radio and television legend, Leopoldo Fernandez, Tres Patines.

In 1980, Ruben decided to move to Miami, Florida to work in TV and Radio commercials while also continuing a career in theater. This is where he met the great hair stylist Gilberto Febles, designer of all of Ruben’s wigs to this day.

Actor/writer/director/producer, Orestes Matacena offered Ruben a part in his film that he planned to shoot in North Carolina. Ruben loved the character and left to Hendersonville to work on “Tainted.”

After the “Tainted” shoot, Ruben worked in many more American films while living in Miami.

While in Miami, Latin household name, Don Francisco, hired him to work on his famous show “Sabado Gigante” for the next eight years as a comedian. In the last three seasons, Ruben constantly flew to Chile to add new vignettes to the show.

When recording the principal role of the cartoon “Duckman,” Ruben had two other jobs: shooting the sitcom "Taina" for Nickelodeon and working on a radio show at Radio Unica. He then decided to pick up his bags and move to Hollywood, where he now resides. He lost both jobs on 9-11-2001.

After settling in Los Angeles, Ruben wrote his first screenplay entitled “Windmills of Manhattan” based on all his delirious anecdotes.

Upon the completion of his script, Ruben joined forces again with Orestes, to shoot a compilation of jokes, called "The Two Faces of Ruben Rabasa." They shot in various locations including Las Vegas, Hollywood, Beverly Hills, majestic mansions and even the famous Queen Mary in Long Beach. This wonderful project surprises and engages the audience by intercutting all the jokes with a candid and heartwarming interview about the journey through his life.

Ruben is an eternal student dedicated to his craft. After completing work on three films in a row and one sitcom filmed in Spain, he is taking three different acting classes and going to speech lessons to improve his English.

  Orna Rachovitsky

Orna Rachovitsky has produced two feature films, "Sex Guns Money @ 20" and "In Plain View." She is also working on a feature documentary on the legendary Cuban Latin Jazz Conga player Francisco Aguabella.

In both movies Orna portrays the role of a detective. In "Sex Guns Money @ 20," she plays a supporting character and "In Plain View," one of the starring roles.

It was not easy to give such a wonderful performance as she did because her other hat was being the producer of the film.

  Chris Alan

Chris Alan, born Christopher Alan Yoosefi, has been acting since he was just a young boy in Roseville, California. Always outgoing and full of life he decided to pursue acting as a career and moved to Los Angeles.

Since his move to LA, Chris has endured many hard times in pursuit of his dream. They include, but are not limited to, being homeless, not eating for days on end, numerous nights without sleep and countless hours of stressed thinking about what tomorrow brings. Chris is very happy to be here and working on his craft and turning his dream into reality.

Chris would like to thank everyone involved with "In Plain View" for their support. He says he had a great time and would love to work with the cast and crew again.

  Benny Nieves

Benny is a native New Yorker with Puerto Rican roots who dreams to follow and emulate fellow countrymen actors Raul Julia and Jose Ferrer. He has had the privilege and honor to have worked with and shared the screen with actors including Al Pacino, Harvey Keitel, Bill Cosby, Jerry Orbach, Gary Sinise, Elizabeth Perkins, Diane Venora, John Cusack, Benjamin Bratt, and directors Taylor Hackford, Harold Becker and Franc Reyes.

Benny considers himself to be extremely blessed by God to have had such an experience. He currently lives happily with his beautiful wife of seven years and pet Pug in the Santa Clarita Valley region of California.

  Shelly Kurtz
I was born in the Bronx into an orthodox Jewish family. I attended orthodox Jewish schools until I graduated Yeshiva University. I became interested in acting while in summer camp when I was about 12, and found that girls began noticing me. I went off to Syracuse University for graduate work and survived the culture shock of finding myself in a non-Jewish environment. I left after a year because the academic and intellectual approach to theater held little interest for me. I just wanted to do it. I went back to New York, started chasing a career and here I am, so many years later, still in the chase.

In the interim I have performed in well over a hundred plays having had the privilege sharing the stage with such luminaries as Shirley Booth, Hans Conreid, Dody Goodman, Carol Lawrence, Susan Egan and Shelley Berman.

Interestingly enough, it was in the late 60’s that I first worked with Orestes Matacena in The Theater of the Americas, a multi cultural theater company, which he founded with his two great friends and fellow artists, Miguel Ponce and Ruben Rabasa.

In New York, I kept myself busy doing off and off-off Broadway plays, commercials and occasional roles on the soaps "Days of Our Lives" and "The Doctors" and an awful lot of temporary day jobs.

I emigrated to Los Angeles in 1975, and continue to this day doing play after play after play. I have guest starred on numerous episodics such as "Dallas," "The New Lassie," "Hill Street Blues," "Hunter," "Resurrection Boulevard," "American Family" and "Knot’s Landing." In addition to Matacena’s "Cuba Libre," and earlier feature "Sex Guns Money @ 20," I also had major roles in the features "Jumping for Joy," " The Darkling," and "The Last Day."

  Agustin Buñuel

Agustin worked on "The Shield" and "Mind of Mencia." Past film credits include "Gothic Vampires from Hell" and "Desert of Blood." He was also seen on stage at the NoHo Arts Theatre in "In Search of Me" and as Tony Montana at "Universal Studio's Halloween Horror Nights."

Agustin is currently working on his autobiography, "My Mom, My Dad, and Miami" while residing in his hometown, 'Little Havana' Miami, Florida. He has a Bachelors in Theater from the University of Florida and a Masters from Roosevelt University in Chicago.

  Carolina Barcos

Carolina Barcos grew up in New York City. She trained at Circle in the Square and received her M.F.A. degree from UCLA’s School of Theatre, Film and Television.

Her recent credits include playing the lead role in the films "Send, Got Papers" and "The Music Box" and the television series "In Plain View," directed by Orestes Matacena. Currently she can be seen in the well received, comedic series "Sands of Passion," directed by Jerry Zucker.

Carolina is also a cofounder of Big Dog Little Dog Productions, a non- profit theatre company designed to provide, culture, education, entertainment and support for young artists in the Los Angeles theatre community. In their latest production, Carolina received an LA Weekly Award for her role of Beth in "A Lie of the Mind" by Sam Shepard.

  Teresa Berkin

Teresa Berkin performed in high school productions back in the “olden days” of the early ‘70s.

She appeared as Moth in "A Midsummer Night's Dream," Louise/Waitress in "Top Girls," and Agatha in "Guys and Dolls" at Cal State Dominguez Hills.

A decade passed before Teresa dipped her toe into the acting pool again, with supporting roles in the feature films "21" (as an overeager prostitute) and "Willoughby" (as a drug dealer's mother), as well as a handful of student projects.

Following another six-year hiatus, she jumped into the deep end in the spring of 2005 and has since appeared in over twenty feature films, scores of short films, three music videos, and half a dozen TV shows.

She performed the title role of Doris Platt in BrynCo Theatre Group’s debut production of the one-act musical "Woman with Pocketbook."

Additional stage roles include Julia Leverett in "Lend Me a Tenor," various parts in "A . . . My Name is Alice," and Gertrude Stein in "Romeo and Julius."

Teresa lives with her husband Geoff and son Richard in Sherman Oaks, California and is grateful for their enthusiastic support and encouragement

  John W. Allen
I was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee; and I spent my formative years in the great outdoors. I was active in the Boy Scouts, which was perfect in Tennessee; and I reached the rank of Eagle scout.

After graduating from college, I served in the U.S. Army in Berlin, Germany. Then it was off to school in Mexico to study art history. I eventually settled in Dallas, Texas, where I caught the acting bug, which meant that I would soon have to leave. California was my final stop.

I developed my acting craft at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute in Hollywood; this proved to be one of the most rewarding adventures in my entire life. It has been exciting to have been a part of numerous independent films, television and commercial projects, which include several of my latest endeavors: the independent film "Promises" and the pilot "L'Originale Burlesque."
  Dennis Curry

Dennis was born at Hamilton Air Force Base just outside of Sausalito, California. He has been acting for over thirty years. Dennis' start and creative acting base is the stage, but he enjoys the challenges of acting on camera.

In addition to acting, Dennis is partners in the production company Stage 6 Digital. Although Location Audio and Post Sound Design have been in the forefront for Dennis and his team, they also have four feature projects in development that they are also co-producing.

Dennis is married and the proud father of a senior in high school.