How Pedro Pascal Became One Of The Biggest Latino Stars In Hollywood

BY: 
Susanne Ramírez de Arellano
 | February 23, 2023

Image courtesy of Nuestro Stories.

Chilean-American actor Pedro Pascal waited years for a breakthrough. He went from anonymity to playing Oberyn Martell in “Game of Thrones,” Javier Peña in “Narcos,” and starring in the recently released “The Great Wall.” He also has a lead role in the “Kingsman” sequel, set to be released this year, and his turn in HBO’s “The Last of Us.”

He was even named one of the sexiest men of the year in 2020 by People Magazine.  

But the gold star of having arrived in his take-over of “Saturday Night Live.” He owned the show because it was Pascal’s time.

However, Pedro Pascal is not only a talented actor. He sweetly supported his sister Lux when she came out as a Trans Woman. Pascal posted a photo of Lux’s cover for the Spanish-language Ya magazine. He wrote in Spanish: “Mi hermana, mi corazón, nuestra Lux.” 

A man of his time

Pedro Pascal, 45, was born in Santiago, Chile, and raised in San Antonio and Orange County, California. He grew up dreaming of movies and loved “The Empire of the Sun.” In a recent interview, he said he couldn’t shut up about films — especially “Empire of the Sun.” 

After Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet’s bloody coup in the 1970s, Pascal and his family fled the military junta, settling first in Denmark, then in San Antonio, Texas. He lived in relative comfort — his father was a fertility doctor, and his mother was a former child psychologist.

As a child, Pascal loved swimming and competed in state championships in Texas. He later moved to California, took a few acting classes, and caught the bug. 

Pedro Pascal attended New York University and, soon after graduation, plunged into the acting world. While he was studying, his father, mother, and siblings returned to Chile. Sadly, soon after, his mother died.

Money was tight. Pascal spent years surviving on television (among them “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Touched by an Angel”) and theater work. 

Now, he is grabbing every chance he gets. 

“The smallest of opportunities kept me going,” he said recently in an interview. “So much so that I resolved to struggle until I couldn’t walk anymore.”

Remember, he got his big break at 41. Pascal credits his mother for his success. “She was always incredibly supportive, never a stage mom,” Pascal told People Magazine.” I always felt like she knew something that I didn’t.”

Now that success has knocked on his door; he says Covid taught him a big lesson. He still lives in New York City and spent most of the pandemic alone. 

“I relied on my friends like one would food and water,” he says. “Because I was on my own, I felt a little rattled and ultimately grateful for all of my friendships, old and new. We were there for each other. That really is the only thing that matters,” he told People Magazine. 

Pascal’s feet seem securely on the ground as his star rises.

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