Bags of Cheetos

CleanLink recently covered the story of a former school janitor who was discovered to have been worth over $8 million after his passing — a story defined by remarkable discipline, frugality and keen investments. He isn’t the only custodian to successfully amass a fortune outside their primary job, however. 

In a story-turned-film called “Flamin’ Hot”, Richard Montañez was a custodian for the Rancho Cucamonga Frito-Lay manufacturing plant who crafted up the idea of adding a spicy option to Cheetos. Looking to pursue his vision further, he managed to get in touch with company executives and pitch his concept — the flavoring now used in Flamin’ Hot Cheetos all across the world. 

Yet as reported by Variety, which previewed the film, Montañez’s journey to getting his idea on that map was far from easy, as shrewd businessmen were trying incessantly to trick him out of maintaining his rights for the million-dollar flavoring. There are differing accounts on who actually came up with the Flamin’ Hot seasoning, however. Frito-Lay, while noting their appreciation for Montañez and his insight into customer preferences, doesn’t actually credit him with it. 

But the producers and actors of the film are siding with Montañez, including director Eva Longoria and Jesse Martinez, who plays the entrepreneurial custodian in the film. By their account, the story of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos revolves around Montañez as the pioneer. 

The movie trailer is available here, and will be available starting June 9 on Hulu.