Chrispin Martin

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Chrispin Martin (November 19, 1893 – June 27, 1953) was an American actor. He was born Ysabel Ponciana Chris-Pin Martin Paiz in Tucson, Arizona, and he was also credited in his films by other names, including Chris-Pin Martin, Chris King Martin, Chris Martin, Cris-Pin Martin and Ethier Crispin Martini.

His roles were as a rotund, roly-poly bumbling or slow comedic character who spoke in broken English. He acted in over 100 films between 1925 and 1953, including over 50 westerns. His most remembered western film role was as a sidekick on Gordito and Pancho in nine of the Cisco Kid films.

Martin was adept in both drama and comedy, in films like the melodramatic The Ox-Bow Incident (1943) as "Poncho" the Mexican who reluctantly becomes a part of the lynch mob of three hastily accused killers (Dana Andrews, Anthony Quinn, and Francis Ford). It's Martin who reluctantly becomes Quinn's confessor. His comic sensibilities were best utilized in light fare, as in A Millionaire for Christy (1951). In this Fred MacMurray comedy, Martin plays a brief but memorable role as "Manolo", a Mexican who knows no English, whom MacMurray enlists to help pull his stranded car out of the beach, along with Martin's non-English speaking crew. His animated performance with MacMurray proves Martin to be every bit the entertaining supporting actor, stealing many of his scenes.


On June 27, 1953, Martin died of a heart attack at 59, while addressing a Moose Lodge meeting in Montebello, California.[1] He is buried at the Odd Fellows Cemetery on Whittier Blvd, in East Los Angeles, California.[2]

Selected filmography[edit]


  1. ^ His death record can be found here by searching for Chrispin Martin with Paiz as the mother's maiden name.
  2. ^ Photo of Martin's grave

External links[edit]