Looking for famous Spanish actors of the past? Want to know who the top contemporary male & female Spanish actors are? Our guide gives you the facts & information you want to know.
Penélope Cruz is widely accepted to be the number one famous Spanish actor or actress currently working. Cruz has transformed herself into the most famous Spanish actress of modern times. Penélope Cruz Sánchez was born in Madrid, Spain, on April 28, 1974. Her father, Eduardo, was a retailer, and her mother a hairdresser. After Winning the Goya Award, which is the Spanish equivalent of the Oscars, as best actress it was widely speculated that Cruz would go on to have an amazing career -in Spain and abroad- that no other Spanish actress has ever achieved, and to date it seems that she has fulfilled many of the expectations of those around her.
Her list of Spanish film appearances include Jamón, Jamón; the Oscar-winning foreign film Belle Epoque, the film that turned her into Spain’s leading female actress; and Almodóvar’s All About My Mother, where she plays a nun who falls in love with an AIDS-infected man and then dies from the disease.
Famous Spanish Actors
Sara Montiel was born on March 10, 1928 and is to be one of the top Spanish actors of the 20th century. She is still a much-loved and globally recognized name in the Spanish-speaking film industry. She was born in Campo de Criptana in the region of New Castile in 1928 as María Antonia Abad. After her unparalleled worldwide hit in Juan de Orduña’s El Último Cuplé in 1957, Montiel achieved the rank of mega-star in Europe and Latin America.
Montiel was recently portrayed in the Pedro Almodóvar film Bad Education by Gael García Bernal as the character Zahara. Montiel was the most successful Spanish actress during the mid 20th century in a great deal of the world. Miss Montiel’s film “Varietes” was banned in Beijing in 1973. Her films “El Último Cuple” and “La Violetera” netted the highest gross revenues ever recorded for films made in the Spanish speaking movie industry during the 50s and 60s. She also played the role of Antonia, the niece of Don Quixote, in the 1947 Spanish film version of Cervantes’s great novel.
Antonio Banderas is widely believed to be the most famous Spanish actor in the world, with several Hollywood blockbuster movies to his name. Although he started his career as an actor in Spain, he is a well established name in Hollywood where he has worked for several years. One of his earlier roles in hollywood included the 1992 film, The Mambo Kings, as well as a supporting role in the Oscar-winning 1993 film, Philadelphia. He appeared in several key Hollywood releases in 1995, including a starring role in the film Desperado. In 1996, he starred alongside Madonna in Evita, an adaptation of the musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice in which he played the narrator, Che. He also received critical acclaim for his role as the fictional Mexican masked swordsman, Zorro in the 1998 film The Mask of Zorro, for which he was the first Spanish actor to portray the character after over 80 years since Zorro’s creation.