Michael Peña has worked hard to become one of the most recognizable faces in Hollywood. He can play fun character actors like in Ant-Man or Battle Los Angeles and also characters with impressive depth like in End of Watch and Crash. He is much different than the characters he portrays, but there is a lot of his family history embedded in the films he stars in. His mother was born in San Luis Potosí and his father in Jalisco, Mexico, and both left home in the 1970s and immigrated to Chicago.
Michael Peña's Rise To Fame
Michael Peña's Latin roots helped him get his foot in the door in Hollywood, considering to get his star he had to speak with a heavy Latino accent and with heavy cliché Latino mannerisms in his first roles like "gang member number four" and "gang member number five."
He says that this situation became so common that he repeatedly promised his mother that the day would come when he would not be just any ruffian, but the leader of a gang. Over time he managed to participate in different projects until he got the attention of critics and the public with his role in the award-winning film Crash, which earned him award nominations and the appreciation of many within the Hispanic community in the United States for showing a more real side of the Latino community.
Meet Michael Peña's wife from Narcos: Mexico
In 2006 Michael married actress, poet, and screenwriter Brie Shaffer. The artist has directed three films and acted in various TV series for the FOX network. In 2008, the couple had their first child, Roman Joel Peña. Michael even tattooed his chest with the name of his firstborn. He told Entertainment Tonight that his fatherhood affected his performance as DEA agent "Kiki Camarena" in Narcos: Mexico in a profound way.
"Kiki" was also a father and was entrenched in dangerous waters, and after speaking with "Kiki's" real-life widow Mika he realized fatherhood made him and "Kiki" more cautious. "You get the feeling of potential loss like you don't want your kids to grow up without a parent. So, you sort of take that into consideration whenever you're close to danger or whatnot. That's what I would think of when I was playing certain parts or certain scenes is that think of the big picture and is it worth it."
Michael and Brie are members of Scientology, so Brie is somewhat private about her personal life due to the problematic history of the Church of Scientology but luckily Michael shares a bit of his family life and love on social media. The two have an absolutely gorgeous little family.
We can't wait to see whatever Michael is a part of next!