Gael García Bernal

Gael García Bernal

Gael García Bernal was becoming a soap opera heartthrob, but at age of 19, he left Mexico’s television world to study acting at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London, becoming the first person from Mexico to be accepted into the program. In the brief period beforehand, he had begun to study philosophy at UNAM, Mexico’s national university, before a strike closed the college and he then left for London. Describing his time in London as ‘life forming’, he considered acting merely an ‘odd job profession’ until the Mexican director Alejandro González Iñárritu offered him a part in Amores Perros. Subsequently, García Bernal starred in some of Mexico’s most celebrated recent films, including 2001′s Y tu mamá también, and El crimen del Padre Amaro (2002). He has also done some theatre work, including a 2005 production of Bodas de Sangre, by Federico García Lorca, in the Almeida Theatre in London. His debut as a working-class dreamer in the Oscar-nominated Amores Perros, however, was what first grabbed Hollywood’s attention.

García Bernal also portrayed Argentine revolutionary Che Guevara twice, first in the 2002 TV miniseries Fidel and then, better known, in 2004′s The Motorcycle Diaries, an adaptation of a journal a 23-year-old Guevara wrote about his travels across South America. García Bernal has worked for acclaimed directors including Pedro Almodóvar, Walter Salles, Alfonso Cuarón, Alejandro González Iñárritu and Michel Gondry, among others. He recently took on roles in English language films, including the Gondry-directed The Science of Sleep, the Alejandro González Iñárritu-directed Babel, and The King, for which he earned rave reviews.[5] He has been nominated for a BAFTA in 2005 for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role for The Motorcycle Diaries and, in 2006, was nominated for the Orange Rising Star award which acknowledges new talents in the acting industry.

García Bernal also directed his first feature film, Déficit, which was released in 2007. García Bernal is also featured on the 2007 Devendra Banhart album Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon, contributing vocals on the first track entitled “Cristobal.” Bernal was cast for the 2008 film Blindness, an adaptation of the 1995 novel of the same name by José Saramago about a society suffering an epidemic of blindness. Like in the novel, the characters have only descriptions, no names or histories; while director Fernando Meirelles said some actors were intimidated by the concept of playing such characters, “With Gael, he said, ‘I never think about the past. I just think what my character wants.’”

Recently, García Bernal starred in Rudo y Cursi with Diego Luna, directed by Carlos Cuarón.

Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna own Canana Productions. The company recently joined with Golden Phoenix Productions owned by Producer Tom Golden of Hot Springs, Arkansas, to jointly produce a number of television documentaries about the unsolved murders of more than 300 women in the border city of Ciudad Juarez, across from El Paso, Texas.

On May 2010, García Bernal did a cameo appearance as himself, playing Cristiano Ronaldo in Ronaldo: The Movie for Nike advertisement “Write The Future”.

In 2010, he co-directed with Marc Siver four short films in collaboration with Amnesty International. This tetralogy is called “Los Invisibles” about migrants from Central America in Mexico, their journey, the violence imposed, their hopes and what they can contribute to Mexico, the US and the World. He directed the movie, did the interviews and also is the narrator of this four short movies that can be freely seen on the Amnesty website or on Youtube.


  • 2000       Queen of Swords
  • 2000       Amores perros
  • 2001       Sin Noticias de Dios
  • 2001       Vidas privadas
  • 2001       Y tu mamá también
  • 2001       El ojo en la nuca
  • 2002       I’m with Lucy
  • 2002       Fidel
  • 2002       El Crimen del Padre Amaro
  • 2003       Dreaming of Julia
  • 2003       Dot the I
  • 2004       Bad Education
  • 2004       The Motorcycle Diaries
  • 2005       The King
  • 2006       Babel
  • 2006       The Science of Sleep
  • 2007       Déficit
  • 2007       El Pasado
  • 2008       Blindness
  • 2008       Rudo y Cursi
  • 2009       Mammoth
  • 2009       The Limits of Control
  • 2009       8 – ‘The Letter’
  • 2010       Letters to Juliet
  • 2010       Even the Rain
  • 2011       A Little Bit of Heaven


  • Ariel Awards 2001: Best actor (Amores Perros)
  • Oye Awards 2009: Popular – Year Revelation (Quiero que me quieras)
  • El Heraldo de México Awards 2001: Best actor (Y tu mamá también)

Posted by  IberoAmericanMovies
Categories: Mexican actors, Mexico

1 Comment

  1. [...] went on to gross $5.7 million in a imited theatrical release in the United States.The film starred Gael García Bernal, Ana Claudia Talancón and Sancho Gracia. It premiered on 16 August 2002 in Mexico [...]

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