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Germaine Franco: for bringing Mexican music to the big screen

To mark International Women's Day, Univision honors 15 incredible Latinas who are innovating in fields from sports to science.

To achieve the mosaic of sounds heard in the soundtrack of the movie Coco, composer Germaine Franco traveled to Mexico with members of the Disney Pixar team, where they immersed themselves in music, spending time with more than 50 street musicians.

The composer shares a lifelong passion for music with the main character of the film, Miguel: "When I was a young girl, no one in my family was a musician but I had this major drive to play music. I was a drummer girl and also played piano. I started writing and, following that path of passion led me to some crazy places, but then also sometimes you land an amazing situation that was Coco,” she said recently in an interview.

Originally from Texas and of Mexican origin, Franco grew up on the border and has a long history as a composer and arranger for films like DOPE, Walk With Me, Kung Fu Panda, Toy Story, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, The Italian Job and Fargo. For this work, she was the first Latina to be invited to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Coco just won two Oscars for the best animated film and best original song for “Remember Me.”

"Follow your passion,” Franco recently told a reporter. “Do not let anyone else ever tell you that you can’t do it."

Emma Gonzalez
For calling B.S. on the NRA
Marlen Esparza
For revolutionizing women's boxing
Germaine Franco
For bringing Mexican music to the big screen
Rita Moreno
For redefining what it means to be 86
Alianza Nacional de Campesinas
For bringing marginalized farmworker's voices into the #MeToo conversation
Diana Trujillo
For getting us closer to Mars
Princess Nokia
For infusing rap with punk rock, feminism and 'Afrolatinidad'
Candi CdeBaca
For fighting gentrification in a changing Denver
Sabrina Gonzalez Pasterski
For breaking barriers in the exploration of space and time
Cristina Martínez
For daring to talk about undocumented restaurant workers
Geisha Williams
For leading California into a green energy future
Elizabeth Guzman
For taking her immigrant story to the Virginia legislature
Reyna Montoya
For encouraging undocumented youth to dream and heal
Maria Hinojosa
For putting Latino stories front and center
Gabby Rivera
For being the first queer Latina to write for Marvel Comics

Coordination: Jessica Weiss, Olivia Liendo and Allie Jaynes.

Illustrations: Grace Berríos and Jackie Albano.

Web design and development: Juan Jesús Gómez.

Editorial: Nathalie Alvaray, Tamoa Calzadilla, Juliana Jiménez, Douglas Gómez and Rogerio Manzano.

Photo Editing: David Maris.

This story was produced in collaboration with Univision Contigo, Univision's social responsibility team.

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