Is Rene Rivera Related to Carlos PenaVega? The Truth Behind the Rumors

If you are a fan of the Hallmark Channel, you might have seen the movie Love in the Limelight, starring Alexa PenaVega and Carlos PenaVega as a pair of pen pals who fall in love. The movie is based on the true story of actors Willie Aames and Winnie Hung, who co-wrote the film

But did you know that Carlos PenaVega has another connection to the movie? His father, Rene Rivera, plays his character’s father, Antonio Rivera, in the film. Is Rene Rivera related to Carlos PenaVega in real life, or is it just a coincidence? Here’s what we know.

Who is Rene Rivera?

Rene Rivera is an American actor who has appeared in many films and TV shows, such as ER, CSI: Miami, NCIS: Los Angeles, and Jane the Virgin. He is also a voice actor who has lent his voice to animated shows like The Loud House, Elena of Avalor, and Victor and Valentino

Rene Rivera was born in San Antonio, Texas, and grew up in a bilingual household. He studied theater at the University of Texas at Austin and later moved to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career. He is married to Karin Argoud, who is also an actress. They have two children together: Carlos PenaVega and Andres PenaVega.

Rene Rivera is Carlos PenaVega’s biological father. Carlos was born as Carlos Roberto Pena Jr. on August 15, 1989, in Columbia, Missouri. His father is of Spanish and Venezuelan descent, while his mother is of Dominican descent.

Carlos grew up in Weston, Florida, where he attended Sagemont Upper School. He was interested in acting and singing from a young age and appeared in local productions of Grease and Man of La Mancha. He also starred in TV commercials for Super Soaker water guns.

Carlos moved to Hollywood in 2009 after landing the role of Carlos Garcia on the Nickelodeon series Big Time Rush. He also became a member of the pop boy band of the same name, along with Kendall Schmidt, James Maslow, and Logan Henderson. The band released three albums and toured worldwide before going on hiatus in 2014.

Carlos met Alexa Vega, another former Nickelodeon star who played Carmen Cortez in the Spy Kids franchise, on the set of the TV movie Big Time Movie in 2012. They started dating in 2013 and got married in 2014. They changed their last name to PenaVega, combining their surnames. They have two sons together: Ocean King PenaVega and Kingston James PenaVega.

Why did Rene Rivera and Carlos PenaVega work together on Love in the Limelight?

According to Hallmark Channel’s website, Love in the Limelight is inspired by the real-life love story of Willie Aames and Winnie Hung, who co-wrote the film with Rich Tabach. Aames is best known for playing Tommy Bradford on Eight Is Enough and Buddy Lembeck on Charles in Charge. Hung is a former Miss Hong Kong who became an actress and producer. They met online as pen pals and fell in love after years of correspondence.

The film follows Summer Rivera (Alexa PenaVega), a project manager who is tasked with renovating a lodge in her hometown where she used to perform with her former love Nick Mendez (Carlos PenaVega), a boy band lead singer who comes to town for a concert. Their friendship reignites as they work together on the lodge, with the help of Summer’s hip grandma (Ivonne Coll) who has a TikTok following.

Rene Rivera plays Antonio Rivera, Summer’s father who owns the lodge and wants to sell it to a developer. He is skeptical of Nick’s intentions and does not approve of their relationship. He also has a strained relationship with his daughter due to his past mistakes.

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight , Carlos PenaVega revealed that he suggested his father for the role after reading the script. He said that he wanted to work with his dad because they had never done anything together before. He also said that he was proud of his dad’s performance and that they had a lot of fun on set.


Rene Rivera is related to Carlos PenaVega as his father in real life and as his character’s father in Love in the Limelight . The movie is based on the true story of Willie Aames and Winnie Hung, who co-wrote the film with Rich Tabach. Rene Rivera is an actor who has appeared in many films and TV shows, as well as a voice actor for animated shows. Carlos PenaVega is an actor and singer who rose to fame on the Nickelodeon series Big Time Rush and the pop boy band of the same name. He is married to Alexa PenaVega, who plays his love interest in the movie. They have two sons together. Carlos PenaVega suggested his father for the role after reading the script and enjoyed working with him on the film.

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