Luis Guzmán

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Luis Guzmán
Luis Guzman 2012.jpg
Guzmán in February 2012 at the French premiere of Journey 2: The Mysterious Island
Born (1956-08-28) August 28, 1956 (age 63)
Years active1976–present
Spouse(s)Angelita Galarza (m. 1985)

Luis Guzmán (born August 28, 1956) is a Puerto Rican character actor. For much of his career, he has played roles, including sidekicks, thugs and policemen.

Guzmán starred in Steven Soderbergh's films Out of Sight, The Limey and Traffic. He also starred in Paul Thomas Anderson's films, Boogie Nights, Magnolia and Punch-Drunk Love. He starred in the HBO original series How to Make It in America and the Netflix series Narcos. He also starred in the CBS medical drama Code Black, where he portrayed senior nurse Jesse "Mama" Salander. He also co-starred on Cameron Crowe's Roadies, a comedy-drama on Showtime, as Gooch, a seasoned crew tour bus driver.

Early life[edit]

Guzmán was born in Cayey, Puerto Rico, and was raised in New York City's Greenwich Village and the surrounding Lower East Side neighborhood. His mother, Rosa, was a hospital worker, and his stepfather, Benjamin Cardona, was a TV repairman.[1] Guzmán began his career as a social worker and moonlighted as an actor, eventually becoming heavily involved in street theater and independent films.[2]


Guzmán at the 2009 premiere of Whatever Works.

Guzman's numerous movie credits include Carlito's Way, Carlito's Way: Rise to Power, Punch-Drunk Love, Welcome to Collinwood, Stonewall, Waiting..., The Salton Sea, and Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events.[3][4] He has also appeared on the TV shows Homicide: Life on the Street, Frasier and Oz and had a role in the video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and its prequel Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories. Guzmán starred in the short-lived 2003 television comedy Luis, and is a commentator on VH1's I Love the '80s, as well as I Love Toys and its sequels, including I Love the '70s and I Love the '90s. He co-starred on the canceled 2007 HBO series John from Cincinnati.

In early 2008, Guzmán starred in "Naturally Aged Cheddar Hunks" TV ads for Cabot Creamery.[5] He also appeared in the music video "Yes We Can." In 2010, he starred in HBO's How to Make It in America and appeared in a comical series of Snickers commercials that played during that year's Superbowl.[6][7]

Personal life[edit]

Guzmán resides in Sutton, Vermont.[8] He and his wife Angelita Galarza have five children.[9]

Guzmán endorsed Senator Bernie Sanders for President in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.[10]

During Telegramgate, Guzmán was interviewed by MSNBC, for his opinions on the situation in Puerto Rico and he expressed that 'Ricky had to go' and that corruption on the island was a major issue that he hoped would be solved.[11]



Year Title Role Notes
1977 Short Eyes Prisoner
1983 Variety Jose
1986 Seven Women, Seven Sins Lotto Man
No Picnic Arroyo
1987 Heartbeat Gang Member #2
*batteries not included Bystander Uncredited
1988 Crocodile Dundee II Jose
1989 True Believer Ortega
Rooftops Martinez
Black Rain Frankie
Family Business Julio Torres
1990 Q&A Detective Valentin
1991 The Hard Way Det. Benny Poole, NYPD
McBain Papo
1992 Jumpin' at the Boneyard Taxi Driver
To Catch a Killer Waiter Television film
Quiet Killer Adelaido Ortiz Television film
In The Shadow of a Killer Louis Velazquez Television film
Innocent Blood Morales
Empire City Unnamed Character Television film
1993 Guilty as Sin Detective Martinez
Double Deception Ronald Sharkey Television film
Naked in New York Auditioner
Mr. Wonderful Juice
Carlito's Way Pachanga
1994 The Cowboy Way Chango
The Burning Season Estate Boss Television film
Hand Gun Rick
El vagabundo con suerte Luis
1995 Lotto Land Ricki
Stonewall Vito
1996 The Substitute Rem
On Seventh Avenue Eddie Diaz Television film
1997 The Brave Luis
Pronto Buck Torres Television film
Boogie Nights Maurice TT Rodriguez Florida Film Critics Circle Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
1998 Out of Sight Chino
Snake Eyes Cyrus
One Tough Cop Gunman Papi
King of New York Unnamed Character Television film
1999 Mind Prey Det. Black Television film
The Limey Eduardo Roel Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
The Bone Collector Eddie Ortiz
Magnolia Luis Awards Circuit Community Awards Best Cast Ensemble
Florida Film Critics Circle Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2000 Luckytown Jimmy
Thin Air Chollo Television film
Traffic Ray Castro Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Table One Xavier
2001 Double Whammy Juan Benitez
Sam the Man Murray
Home Invaders Peligro
2002 The Count of Monte Cristo Jacopo
The Salton Sea Quincy
Punch-Drunk Love Lance Imagen Award Best Supporting Actor
Welcome to Collinwood Cosimo
The Adventures of Pluto Nash Felix Laranga
2003 Confidence Officer Omar Manzano
Anger Management Lou
Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd Ray
Runaway Jury Jerry Hernandez Uncredited
2004 Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events Bald Man
2005 Dreamer Balon
Carlito's Way: Rise to Power Nacho Reyes
Waiting... Raddimus
2006 Disappearances Brother St. Hilaire
Fast Food Nation Benny
School for Scoundrels Sergeant Moorehead
Hard Luck Million Dollar Mendez
Lolo's Cafe Lolo Voice; Television film
2007 Maldeamores Ismael Imagen Award for Best Actor
War Benny
Cleaner Detective Vargas
2008 Chicano Blood Mexican Mule 1
Beverly Hills Chihuahua Chucho Voice
I Kicked Luis Guzman in the Face Luis Short film
Nothing like the Holidays Johnny
Yes Man Jumper Uncredited
2009 He's Just Not That Into You Javier Uncredited
Still Waiting... Raddimus
Fighting Martinez
The Taking of Pelham 123 Phil Ramos Nominated—ALMA Award for Best Supporting Actor
Old Dogs Nick Uncredited
2011 Arthur Bitterman
The Caller George
Rise of the Damned Ramon
2012 Journey 2: The Mysterious Island Gabato Laguatan
Counter Culture Alonzo Television film
Departure Date Frank Short film
2013 The Last Stand Mike Figuerola
Turbo Angelo Voice
We're the Millers Mexican Cop
2014 Two Men in Town Terence
In the Blood Chief Ramón Garza
The Lookalike Vincent
Henry & Me Lefty Gomez Voice
Top Five Himself
Reclaim Superintendent
2015 Don Quixote: The Ingenious Gentleman of La Mancha Farmer
Ana Maria in Novela Land Licenciado Schmidt
Puerto Ricans in Paris Luis Executive producer
2016 Keanu Bacon
The Do-Over Jorge
2017 Aztec Warrior Aztec Warrior Executive producer
Sandy Wexler Oscar
Literally, Right Before Aaron Federico
The Duck Leonard Short film
9/11 Eddie
2018 The Padre Gaspar
Belleville Cop Ricardo Garcia
2019 Hold On Pastor Rivera
TBD Bread and Games Martin Pre-production


Year Title Role Notes
1985 The Equalizer Gypsy Cabbie Episode: "The Lock Box"
1985–86 Miami Vice Goon #1 / Miguel Revilla 2 episodes
1990 Hunter Carlos Delgado Episode: "La Familia"
1991 Monsters Luis Episode: "Desirable Alien"
Law & Order Cesar Pescador Episode: "Heaven"
1992 Civil Wars Hector Rodriguez Episode: "Tape Fear"
1993 Homicide: Life on the Street Lorenzo Molera Episode: "Son of a Gun"
Walker, Texas Ranger Gomez Episode: "Storm Warning"
NYPD Blue Hector Martinez 2 episodes
1994 seaQuest DSV General Guzmano Episode: "The Good Death"
1995 House of Buggin Various 10 episodes
1995–96 New York Undercover Joaquin / Det. Lopez 2 episodes
1998 Early Edition John Hernandez Episodes: "The Quality of Mercy"
Michael Hayes Santos Episodes: "Vaughn Mowery"
1998–2001 Oz Raoul "El Cid" Hernandez 12 episodes
2002 Frasier George Episode: "Enemy at the Gate"
2003 Luis Luis Cortez 9 episodes
2007 John from Cincinnati Ramon Gaviota 10 episodes
2010–11 How to Make It in America Rene Calderon 16 episodes
NAMIC Visions Awards Best Performance in a Comedy
2011 Community Himself Episode: "Documentary Filmmaking: Redux"
2013 Republic of Doyle Charles Alomar Episode: "The Devil Inside"
2014 Mind Games Nate 3 episodes
2015–18 Code Black Jesse Salander 47 episodes
2015 Narcos José Gonzalo Rodríguez Gacha 6 episodes
2016 Roadies Gooch the crew's tour bus driver 3 episodes as of mid season
2018 The Untitled Action Bronson Show Himself Episode: "An Australian Surprise and Luis Guzmán"
Bar Rescue Himself Episode: "Operation: Puerto Rico"
2019 Shameless Mikey O’Shea - Hobo Loco Contestant 3 Episodes
2019 Perpetual Grace, LTD Hector Contreras Main role
2019 Godfather of Harlem Alejandro "El Guapo" Villabuena 3 Episodes

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2002 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Ricardo Díaz Voice
2006 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories
2011 Gangstar Rio: City of Saints Fumo

Music videos[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2002 "Undisputed" Prisoner
2013 "Gorilla" Strip zoo owner
2017 "1-800-273-8255" Track coach
2018 "Está Rico" Gambler

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Luis Guzman Biography (1957?-)". Retrieved May 15, 2013.
  2. ^ "Luis Guzman Biography". Star Pulse. Retrieved June 19, 2011.
  3. ^ "Actor Luis Guzmán had a very different job before Hollywood. He drew on it for 'Hold On.'". NBC News.
  4. ^ Desk, BWW News. "Based On A True Story, Independent Film HOLD ON Opens 12/06".
  5. ^ Swansburg, John "Cheese Puff" (January 18, 2008). Retrieved on May 1, 2008.
  6. ^ "Snickers Ad Starring Luis Guzmán from Super Bowl 2020 Ads". E! News.
  7. ^ "Snickers TV Commercial, '#SnickersFixedTheWorld: Online Date' Featuring Luis Guzman".
  8. ^ "Legislative Documents". Retrieved May 15, 2013.
  9. ^ "Puerto Rican actor Luis Guzman Marriage life; Adopted Four Children".
  10. ^ "Bernie Sanders campaign taps Rosario Dawson, Luis Guzman to woo Latino voters in LA". Los Angeles Daily News. May 26, 2016.
  11. ^ "Luis Guzman on Ricardo Rossello and protests in San Juan". 21 July 2019. Retrieved 18 August 2019.

External links[edit]