Nestor Carbonell

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Nestor Carbonell
Carbonell in May 2009
Born Néstor Gastón Carbonell
(1967-12-01) December 1, 1967 (age 47)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Alma mater Harvard University
  • Actor
  • writer
  • director
Years active 1989–present
Spouse(s) Shannon Kenny (m. 2001)
Children 2

Néstor Gastón Carbonell[1][2] (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈnestor ɣasˈtoŋ karβoˈneʎ]; born December 1, 1967) is an American actor. He is perhaps most famous for his roles as Richard Alpert in ABC's drama series Lost, and Mayor Anthony Garcia in the Christopher Nolan films The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. He is also known for his regular roles as Luis Rivera on the sitcom Suddenly Susan, and Batmanuel on the live-action sitcom The Tick. Carbonell currently portrays Sheriff Alex Romero on A&E's drama-thriller series Bates Motel.

Early life[edit]

Carbonell was born in New York City to a Cuban family of Spanish descent (his grandparents were of Catalan, Basque, Navarran, and Andalusian origins).[3] His parents emigrated to the United States from Cuba in 1960.[4] Carbonell's father, Néstor T. Carbonell Cortina, worked for PepsiCo,[5][6] which required the family to live for periods of time in London, Mexico City, the Bahamas, and Caracas.[7] His father is also active in the Cuban community, and wrote the book And The Russians Stayed: The Sovietization of Cuba.[8] Former professional baseball player Rafael Palmeiro is his cousin. His great-grandfather, José Manuel Cortina, was a noted Cuban orator and diplomat.[9]

Carbonell attended The British School while living in Caracas. He and his family later moved back to the U.S., and he attended Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts with future Lost co-star Matthew Fox.[10] He went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts in English from Harvard University (his father's alma mater), graduating in 1990.[11] Carbonell was raised a Roman Catholic.[12]


Carbonell's first acting role was a guest starring part as the character Alberto Cordova in an episode of As the World Turns. He then appeared on episodes of Law & Order, Melrose Place, A Different World, Reasonable Doubts, Good Advice, Brotherly Love, and The John Larroquette Show. In 1995, he starred in two roles, as Roberto and one half of the Couple in Bar, in Stephen Sondheim and George Furth's comedy-thriller play Getting Away with Murder. That same year, he appeared as a main cast member on the short-lived The WB sitcom Muscle. He subsequently portrayed the regular role of Luis Rivera on the Brooke Shields-led sitcom Suddenly Susan for four seasons (1996–2000).

For much of his early career, he played characters with thick Hispanic accents, and was so convincing that people thought it was how he actually sounded. One of his first obstacles in Hollywood was convincing them that in reality he didn't have an accent and that he is capable of doing broader roles.[13] In 2000, Carbonell made his debut as a screenwriter with the comedy film Attention Shoppers, in which he also starred as Enrique Suarez, the lead role. He has since had recurring roles on Resurrection Blvd., The Tick, Kim Possible (as the voice of Señor Senior Jr.), Century City, Strong Medicine, and Cold Case. He also guest starred on Scrubs (in the episode "My Moment of Un-Truth"), House (in the episode "Cursed"), Monk (in the episode "Mr. Monk Gets Married"), and Day Break (in the episode "What If He Can Change the Day?").

In 2006, he appeared alongside his future Lost co-star Matthew Fox, as assassin Pasquale Acosta, in the film Smokin' Aces. Carbonell was cast as Richard Alpert on the third season of ABC's drama series Lost. The mysteries surrounding his ageless character were heavily discussed among the fan community throughout his arc in the season.[14] While producing the final episodes of the third season, Carbonell was cast in a starring role as Frank Duque on the CBS series Cane. The writers of Lost modified their original story plan for the third season in anticipation for Carbonell's potential unavailability. Despite Carbonell's willingness to return to the ABC series, CBS president Nina Tassler ruled out another guest appearance.[15] Cane was cancelled during the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike, freeing Carbonell from his contract with CBS.[16] In 2008, Lost showrunner Carlton Cuse stated that Carbonell would reprise his role as Richard Alpert towards the end of the series' fourth season,[17] as a result of Cane‍‍ '​‍s cancellation.[16] Carbonell made appearances in the episodes "Cabin Fever" and "There's No Place Like Home". Cuse cited this as an unintended positive consequence of the strike.[17] Carbonell appeared in nine episodes of the fifth season,[18] and was upgraded to a main cast member of Lost for its sixth and final season.

In 2008, he landed the role of Mayor Anthony Garcia in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight.[19] His wife, Shannon Kenny, was previously involved in a Batman project, voicing the character Inque in the Batman Beyond television series. In 2010, Carbonell joined the series Psych for two episodes playing Declan Rand, a criminal profiler.[20] In 2011, Carbonell starred in the CW series Ringer as FBI agent Victor Machado.[21] Also in 2011, he was announced to guest star in FX comedy series Wilfred, a role which later turned into a recurring one.[22] The following year, Carbonell briefly appeared in The Dark Knight Rises, reprising his role as Mayor Anthony Garcia in the final installment of Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy.

Since 2013, he has played Sheriff Alex Romero in the A&E Psycho prequel series Bates Motel. In the first season, he starred in a recurring capacity, but was upgraded to a main cast member starting with the second season.[23] In 2014, Carbonell guest starred on the CBS drama series' Person of Interest in the episode "Most Likely to...",[24] and The Good Wife in the episode "The Deep Web".[25] That same year, he began appearing as the recurring character Raymond Navarro in NBC's espionage thriller series State of Affairs.[26]

Personal life[edit]

Carbonell has been married to Australian actress Shannon Kenny since January 3, 2000.[10] They originally met while working together on the 1995 television series Muscle and went on to co-star in the 2000 film Attention Shoppers, which Carbonell wrote.[27] The couple have two children, Rafael (born 2002) and Marco (born 2005).[10] He is a practicing Roman Catholic.[12]

Carbonell's dark eyelashes have been a staple topic of discussion in interviews, and both Carbonell and the producers of Lost made it clear they are not enhanced by any form of makeup.[28] A short skit during the Lost panel at the 2009 San Diego Comic-Con International featured Carbonell allegedly applying eyeliner before throwing a Christian Bale-esque rant upon receiving the wrong color makeup from an assistant.[29] In a season 5 episode of Lost, James "Sawyer" Ford refers to Carbonell's character as "your buddy out there with the eyeliner."[28] In addition, in the Psych episode "Shawn 2.0", Shawn Spencer makes a comment about him having "impossibly dark eyelashes."[30]

He is fluent in Spanish, a skill he put to use in the sixth season episode of Lost, "Ab Aeterno", in which numerous scenes contain dialogue mostly or solely in Spanish.[31] He also starred in a Spanish-language Pepsi commercial alongside Eva Longoria, and in a Spanish-language Heineken commercial.[32]



Year Title Role Notes
2000 Attention Shoppers Enrique Suarez Also writer and executive producer
2001 Jack the Dog Jack the Dog
2002 The Laramie Project Moisés Kaufman
2003 Manhood Jack the Dog
2005 The Lost City Luis Fellove
2006 Smokin' Aces Pasquale Acosta
2008 The Dark Knight Mayor Anthony Garcia
2008 Killer Movie Seaton Brookstone
2010 Noah's Ark: The New Beginning Leeu (voice)
2012 For Greater Glory Mayor Picazo
2012 The Dark Knight Rises Mayor Anthony Garcia
2013 Dead Drop Santiago Video
2015 Medicine Men Silas St-John In post-production
2016 Director's Cut Perry Completed
2016 Imperium Tom Hernandez In post-production
2016 Untitled Colin Warner project Bruce Regenstreich Filming


Year Title Role Notes
1989 As the World Turns Alberto Cordova Episode: "1.8965"
1991 Law & Order Stuart Carradine Episode: "Out of Control"
1992 Melrose Place Alex Episode: "Lost & Found"
1992 A Different World Malik Velasquez 2 episodes
1993 Reasonable Doubts Tomasso Lopez Episode: "The Ties That Bind (Part 1)"
1994 Good Advice Marco Episode: "Two Times Twenty"
1995 Muscle Gianni 13 episodes
1996 Brotherly Love Eduardo Episode: "Remember"
1996 The John Larroquette Show Felicio Episode: "Intern Writer"
1996–2000 Suddenly Susan Luis Rivera 93 episodes
1998 Veronica's Closet Tony Tony Episode: "Veronica's All Nighter"
1998 Encore! Encore! Marly Morrow Episode: "Mr. Joe's Wild Rose"
2000 Resurrection Blvd. Peter Terrano 6 episodes
2000 Noriega: God's Favorite Major Giroldi Television film
2000 Happily Ever After Sir Gooey (voice) Episode: "Robinita Hood"
2001 These Old Broads Gavin Television film
2001–02 The Tick Batmanuel 9 episodes
2002 Static Shock Garcia (voice) Episode: "Pop's Girlfriend"
2002 Ally McBeal Miles Josephson Episode: "What I'll Never Do for Love Again"
2002–07 Kim Possible Señor Senior Jr. (voice) 12 episodes
2003 The Division Byron Johnson Episode: "Cold Comfort"
2004 Monk Dalton Padron Episode: "Mr. Monk Gets Married"
2004 Scrubs Dr. Ronny Ramirez Episode: "My Moment of un-Truth"
2004 Century City Tom Montero 9 episodes
2004–06 Strong Medicine Jonas Ray 11 episodes
2005 Justice League Unlimited El Diablo (voice) Episode: "The Once and Future Thing"
2005 House Jeffrey Reilich Episode: "Cursed"
2006 Brandy & Mr. Whiskers Tito (voice) Episode: "Rain Delay"
2006 Commander in Chief Dr. Kyle Brock Episode: "The Elephant in the Room"
2006 Cold Case Mike Valens 3 episodes
2006 Day Break Eddie Reyes Episode: "What If He Can Change the Day?"
2007 Eloise: The Animated Series Additional voices Episode: "Eloise Goes to Hollywood"
2007 American Dragon: Jake Long Cupid (voice) Episode: "The Love Cruise"
2007 Andy Barker, P.I. Dr. Cey Episode: "The Big No Sleep"
2007 Queens Supreme Benedetto Episode: "Supreme Heat"
2007 Cane Frank Duque 13 episodes
2007–10 Lost Richard Alpert 36 episodes
2010–12 The Penguins of Madagascar Savio (voice) 3 episodes
2010 Psych Declan Rand 2 episodes
2011–12 Ringer Victor Machado 22 episodes
2011–14 Wilfred Arturo Ramos 3 episodes
2013–present Bates Motel Sheriff Alex Romero 27 episodes; also directed 1 episode
2014 Person of Interest Matthew Reed Episode: "Most Likely to..."
2014 The Good Wife Daniel Irwin Episode: "The Deep Web"
2014–15 State of Affairs Ray Navarro 7 episodes
2015 Jake and the Never Land Pirates Eagle-Eye (voice) 2 episodes
2015 Ray Donovan Sheldon Blackwood Episode: "Handshake Deal"


Year Title Role Location
1995 Getting Away with Murder Roberto / Couple in Bar Old Globe Theatre, San Diego

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
1996 ALMA Awards Outstanding Individual Performance in a Comedy Series Suddenly Susan Nominated
1998 Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series Won
1999 Won
2003 Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival Star on the Horizon Himself Won
2009 ALMA Awards Best Actor on Television – Drama Lost Nominated
2010 Golden Nymph Awards Outstanding Actor – Drama Series Nominated
Imagen Awards[33][34] Best Actor – Television Nominated
2013 Best Supporting Actor – Television Bates Motel Nominated
2014 Nominated


  1. ^ "Cuarto Grupo Ramirez De Arellano - Mendoza". Retrieved March 12, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Néstor Carbonell y Ramírez de Arellano". 
  3. ^ "No puedo esperar a poner las manos en el guión del último episodio de Perdidos" (in Spanish). 
  4. ^ Lamb, David (July 4, 1999). "The Riddle of Noriega". Los Angeles Times. 
  5. ^ Carbonell, Nestor (August 23, 2015). "@CarbonellNestor: My dad worked for Pepsi for forty years.". Twitter. 
  6. ^ Menedez, Robert (April 13, 2000). "In Honor of Dr. Nestor Carbonell-Cortina for his Life-Long Commitment to Freedom and Democracy". THOMAS. 
  7. ^ "Meet the Cast: Nestor Carbonell as Sheriff Alex Romero". A&E. 
  8. ^ Carbonell, Néstor T. (February 27, 2015). "The Cuba Deal: How Raúl Castro Duped Obama". Forbes. 
  9. ^ Sterling, Carlos Márquez and Sterling, Manuel Márquez. Historia de La Isla De Cuba, Regents Publishing Company, Inc. New York, NY, 1975. ISBN 0-88345-251-0
  10. ^ a b c Malcom, Shawna (March 23, 2010). "Five Things to Know About Lost's Nestor Carbonell". People. 
  11. ^ Sterngold, James (August 26, 1997). "As Writers and Producers, Young Alumni Find They Can Make a Lot of Money Fast". The New York Times. 
  12. ^ a b Doyle, Paula (August 19, 2005). "Catholic television actor credits faith in helping navigate career/life.". The Tidings. Retrieved October 7, 2010. It was bizarre to film in a church where I worship every Sunday, Catholicism was what I was raised in. 
  13. ^ "Stephanie Ripstein entrevista a Nestor Carbonell". YouTube. May 20, 2009. 
  14. ^ Lachonis, Jon (July 18, 2007). "Cane Star Nestor Carbonell Leaves Lost Future in Doubt". BuddyTV. Retrieved July 7, 2008. 
  15. ^ Sepinwall, Alan (July 18, 2007). "Lost at CBS". The Star-Ledger. Retrieved July 7, 2008. 
  16. ^ a b Ausiello, Michael (March 12, 2008). "Ausiello on Grey's, Lost, Smallville, Tree Hill and More!". TV Guide. Archived from the original on June 8, 2008. Retrieved July 7, 2008. 
  17. ^ a b Jensen, Jeff (February 22, 2008). "7 Writers' Strike Postscripts". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved July 7, 2008. 
  18. ^ "Actor Nestor Carbonell: I'm living a dream". Notiemail. Retrieved November 27, 2008. 
  19. ^ Dodd, Stacy (May 16, 2007). "Eric Roberts and Nestor Carbonell". Variety. 
  20. ^ "Lost's Nestor Carbonell Joins Psych Cast". TV Guide. 
  21. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (February 9, 2011). "Four Actors Join Broadcast/Cable Pilots". 
  22. ^ Snierson, Dan (May 9, 2011). "Scoop: 'Lost' alum Nestor Carbonell to guest on FX comedy 'Wilfred'". Entertainment Weekly. 
  23. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (October 2, 2012). "Mike Vogel & Nestor Carbonell Join A&E's 'Bates Motel', Trio To Recur On 'Shameless'". 
  24. ^ Bricker, Tierney (March 4, 2014). "Person of Interest Casting Scoop: Find Out Which LostFan Favorite Is Reuniting With Michael Emerson! Plus, a Sneak Peek". E! Online. 
  25. ^ Gelman, Vlada (April 22, 2014). "TVLine Items: Lost Actor to Romance Good Wife, Reign Taps BSG Alum, ION Gets Blue and More". TVLine. 
  26. ^ "Tonight on NBC: 'Lost' Alum Joins 'State of Affairs'". 4029tv. December 1, 2014. 
  27. ^ Barnard, Linda (July 19, 2012). "Nestor Carbonell’s six degrees of Batman separation". Toronto Star. 
  28. ^ a b Harris, Will (January 28, 2009). "Once more, for the record: Nestor Carbonell does NOT wear eye make-up!". Premium Hollywood. Retrieved March 8, 2009. 
  29. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (July 13, 2011). "Comic-Con 2011: 'Ringer's' Nestor Carbonell on 'Lost,' Eyeliner and Sarah Michelle Gellar". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  30. ^ McDuffee, Keith (September 1, 2010). "Psych – Who knew Curt Smith was an angry drunk?". Cliqueclack. 
  31. ^ Case, Laura (June 16, 2011). "8 Things You Need to Know About Ringer's Nestor Carbonell". Wetpaint. 
  32. ^ Tejeda, Gregory (February 25, 2009). "Heineken wants the Latino market too". The South Chicagoan. 
  33. ^ "Nominees for the 28th Annual Imagen Awards Announced". The Imagen Foundation. June 2013. 
  34. ^ "Nominees for the 29th Annual Imagen Awards Announced". The Imagen Foundation. June 2014. 

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