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Ektor Rivera talks about ‘Groundswell’ film on Hallmark

Ektor Rivera chatted about being a part of the new Hallmark movie “Groundswell.”

Ektor Rivera in 'Groundswell'
Ektor Rivera in 'Groundswell.' Photo Credit: Karen Neal, Crown Media
Ektor Rivera in 'Groundswell.' Photo Credit: Karen Neal, Crown Media

Multifaceted entertainer Ektor Rivera chatted about being a part of the new original movie “Groundswell,” which just came out on Sunday, August 21, on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries.

Margaret Mead once said: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” This quote applies to actor Ektor Rivera, who stars in “Groundswell.”


The synopsis of “Groundswell” is as follows: On the heels of a personal and professional setback, Chef Emma (Lacey Chabert) travels to Hawaii where she meets Ben (Ektor Rivera), a handsome, reclusive surf instructor whose lessons help her to regain her footing after being on the heels of a personal and professional setback. It was filmed in Hawaii. “Ben is a surf instructor but I never surfed in my life,” he said with a sweet laugh.

“I lived in Puerto Rico in front of the beach when I was young but I never tried to surf, I would only swim, so it was nice to experience a different sport. I like the fact that they kept my character Puerto Rican. They gave me a lot of liberty with this character. It was fantastic to be a part of this movie.”

“‘Groundswell’ was amazing,” he exclaimed. “This was my first time traveling to Hawaii. It was fantastic, as an actor experiencing Hawaii was really nice. We had a lot of fun over there.”

Rivera had great words about working with Lacey Chabert, who played the female lead in this film, as well as director Lee Friedlander. “Working with Lee was amazing,” he said. “Lee was super kind and open to letting us do what we doing, so it was very nice to work with her.”

“Lacey Chabert was incredible too,” he said. “Lacey was so humble and she treated the project with passion and openness. She was fantastic to work with and the chemistry was instantaneous. We had a lot of emotional moments in the movie. To be able to work with Lacey was one of the best experiences.”

“In this film, Lee did a great job combining the symbolism of surfing,” he said. “If you have anything in your life that is stuck in your head or your mind or still in the past, do what a surfer would do, and try to grab the surfboard and look forward. Focus on the present and what is in front of you. I hope the fans get that message with Emma and Ben.”

On being an actor in the digital age, he said, “There are more opportunities and the digital age allows us to explore more characters. There is more work and it allows more people to create stories on different platforms. You have a lot of content to watch and there are more opportunities for work.”

This Friday, August 26th, Rivera is looking forward to being featured in the “Suspenders Unbuttoned” podcast, which focuses on Hallmark stars. “I am excited to be a part of that and to do that,” he admitted. “Hallmark has a sweet and dedicated fan community.”

‘On Your Feet’ on Broadway

He had great memories of starring in “On Your Feet” on Broadway in New York City. “That was incredible, and it is crazy how fast the time flies. It was fantastic,” he said. “I will never forget being given the opportunity to play a Cuban-American, and to tell that story every night. Gloria Estefan and Emilio Estefan were both amazing.”

On the title of the current chapter of his life, Rivera responded, “Fatherhood.” “All of the emotions that bring a baby make me a better artist in all of the senses. My daughter Bria allows me to have more of an open heart.”


Rivera defined the word success as “having a balance in life with everything.” “To be happy in whatever you do. It’s not about the money or the projects you do, it’s about enjoying your ride, and having your dreams, goals, and ambitions. Enjoy the process,” he explained.

To learn more about actor and artist Ektor Rivera, follow him on Instagram and check out his Linktree page.

Ektor Rivera
Ektor Rivera. Photo Credit: Brendan Meadows, Crown Media
Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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