The actress expressed her heartbreak over the unexpected death of the screenwriter and producer.

By Lena Hansen
January 08, 2020 12:46 PM

America Ferrera expressed her heartbreak over the death of Ugly Betty creator Silvio Horta, who was found dead at age 45 on Tuesday in Miami, PEOPLE confirmed. “I’m stunned and heartbroken to hear the devastating news of Ugly Betty creator Silvio Horta’s death,” the Honduran American actress, 35, wrote on Instagram, sharing a photo with Horta and Salma Hayek at the 2007 Golden Globes. “His talent and creativity brought me and so many others such joy and light. I’m thinking of his family and loved ones who must be in so much pain right now, and of the whole Ugly Betty family who feel this loss so deeply.”

Other Ugly Betty stars also mourned Horta, who reportedly died from apparent suicide. “Silvio Horta gave me two of the greatest opportunities in my career with Jake 2.0 and Ugly Betty,” Christopher Gorham wrote on Instagram. “I will be forever grateful for his creativity, his enormous heart, and his friendship. His family was his world and my heart goes out to them tonight. Let’s all take care of each other.”

Mark Indelicato, who played Justin Suarez on Ugly Betty, expressed in his Instagram Story: “Truly devastating news. Silvio gave me my start at 11 years old and trusted me with a character that was so close to his heart. He will be greatly missed by all.” Singer and actress Vanessa Williams, who played Wilhelmina Slater on the series, shared a photo with the late screenwriter on Instagram and wrote: “Still in shock after hearing the tragic news of our Ugly Betty creator Silvio Horta. His creativity and passion will be missed by so many of us that worked with him. May he rest in peace.”

Ugly Betty, co–executive produced by Salma Hayek, starred America Ferrera as a young Latina who, despite her lack of style, lands a job at a fashion magazine, falls in love with her boss, and transforms everyone’s notion of beauty.

Developed by Horta, Ugly Betty ran from 2006 to 2010. The series was based on Fernando Gaitán’s Colombian telenovela Yo Soy Betty, La Fea, which has had numerous TV adaptations worldwide. Yo Soy Betty, La Fea is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most successful telenovela of all time, having been adapted in various languages and countries like Greece, Albania, Malaysia, Croatia, and Vietnam.

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