Actors You Thought Were Hispanic or Latino, But They're Not

by jonesie12345 | created - 11 Mar 2018 | updated - 4 months ago | Public


1. Aramis Knight

Actor | Into the Badlands

Aramis Knight born October 3, 1999 in Woodland Hills, California. At age 4, his mother, enrolled him in an acting workshop. In 2005, Aramis began acting in commercials and playing minor screen roles. Since then, he has guest starred and appeared as recurring characters on multiple television series...

Mother is Caucasian with English, Irish, and German ancestry; father is Pakistani and Indian

Latino roles:
Billy Boy (Carlos); Welcome to the Family (Demetrio Hernandez); The Mentalist (Alex Dos Santos); Crossing Over (Juan Sanchez); Dexter (Carlos); Cold Case (Emilio Valens); Boston Legal (Tito Perez)

2. Herb Alpert

Music_department | Never Say Never Again

Bandleader who had several big instrumental hits in 1960s with his band, Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass. First big hit was "The Lonely Bull" in 1963. He and the Brass followed that with other big hits like "Tijuana Taxi", "Spanish Flea" (familiar to some as "the Dating Game song"), "A Taste of ...

Romanian and Russian Jewish; is a singer, songwriter, trumpeter, and bandleader; co-founded A&M Records

Latino role:
Founded Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass

3. Armand Assante

Actor | Gotti

Armand Assante is a coarsely handsome American actor who has successfully portrayed a wide range of intriguing characters from numerous ethnic backgrounds, both on screen and in the theater.

Armand Anthony Assante, Jr. was born on October 4, 1949 in New York City, to Katherine (Healey), a music ...

Mother was Irish, father was Italian

Latino roles:
The Red Maple Leaf (Joseph Cortez); Law and Order : SVU: (Nicolas Amaro); A Fine Step (Alejandro Bolivar); Chuck (Alejandro Goya); Shadows in Paradise (Capt. John Santos); October Road (Gabriel Diaz); Striptease (Lt. Al Garcia); Judge Dredd (Rico); The Mambo Kings (Cesar Castillo); Q&A (Bobby Texador); The Penitent (Juan Mateo); Lady of the House (Ernest de Paulo)

4. Justin Baldoni

Actor | Jane the Virgin

Justin Baldoni is an actor, director, and social entrepreneur focused on creating and effecting positive change. Justin is best known for playing "Rafael" on CW's Award winning phenomenon Jane the Virgin.

In 2012, Justin created the most watched digital documentary series in history "My Last Days", ...

Mother is Ashkenazi Jewish; father is Italian

Latino roles
:Jane the Virgin (Rafael Solano); A Fine Step (Marzo Bolivar); The Suite Life of Zack and Cody (Diego); Everwood (Reid Bardem)

5. Adam Beach

Actor | Windtalkers

Adam Beach was born in Ashern, Manitoba, the son of Sally and Dennis Beach, and was raised on the Dog Creek First Nations Reserve, with his two brothers. A troubled childhood saw his mother killed by a drunk driver, and his alcoholic father drowned only weeks afterward. The three brothers went to ...

Canadian First Nations

Latino roles
: Backstrom (Capt. Jesse Rocha); Bottoms Up (Jesus de Jesus);Bliss (Angel)

6. Lou Bega

Soundtrack | Iron Man Three

Lou Bega was born on April 13, 1975 in Monacco Bauiera as David Lou Bega.

Mother is Italian; father is Ugandan

7. Michael Copon

Actor | One Tree Hill

Michael Copon is an American actor known for a variety of film and television roles including that of Lucas Kendall in Power Rangers: Time Force and Felix Taggaro in One Tree Hill.

Kick starting his career in 2001, Copon was chosen by the Fox Kids Network to portray Lucas Kendall in Power Rangers: ...

Mother is German; father is Filipino

Latino roles:
One Tree Hill (Felix Taggarro); Fearless (Agent Diego Chavez);La Migra (Diego Chavez); All You've Got (Artie Sanchez)

8. Mark Cuban

Producer | The Jacket

Mark Cuban was born July 31, 1958 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Shirley (Feldman) and Norton Cuban, an automobile upholsterer. His family, of Eastern European Jewish descent, was originally named Chabenisky. Mark graduated from Indiana University in 1981 with a degree in Business. After college, ...

Ashkenazi Jewish with Russian, Romanian, and Moldovan ancestry; original family name was Chabinsky or Chabenesky

9. Cliff Curtis

Actor | Sunshine

Cliff Curtis was born in Rotorua, New Zealand, on July 27, 1968.

He is of New Zealand Maori descent (with Ngati Hauiti and Te Arawa tribal affiliations). He enrolled at the New Zealand Drama School, and then the Teatro Dmitri Scoula in Switzerland.

After returning to New Zealand from Europe, he was ...

Maori (from New Zealand)

Latino and Spanish roles:
Last Knights (Lt. Cortez); Gang Related (Javier Acosta); Colombiana (Emilio Restrepo); Runaway Jury (Frank Herrera); Blow (Pablo Escobar);Training Day (Smiley); The Fountain (Capt. Ariel); Live Free or Die Hard (Miguel Bowman)

10. El DeBarge

Soundtrack | Short Circuit

El DeBarge was born on June 4, 1961 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA as Eldra DeBarge. He is married to Monique DeBarge. They have one child. He was previously married to Tracey Ferguson.

Mother is African-American; father was Caucasian with French and English ancestry

11. Lana Del Rey

Soundtrack | The Great Gatsby

Vocalist Lana Del Rey makes atmospheric, orchestral, retro-'60s-sounding pop that showcases her torchy image and sensuously husky singing style.

Del Rey was born Elizabeth Woolridge Grant in New York City, to Patricia Ann (Hill), an account executive, and Robert England Grant, Jr., a copywriter ...

Scottish and English; birth name was Elizabeth Woolridge Grant

12. Giancarlo Esposito

Actor | Breaking Bad

Giancarlo Giuseppe Alessandro Esposito was born in Copenhagen, Denmark, to an Italian carpenter/stagehand father from Naples, Italy, and an African-American opera singer mother from Alabama. His parents, working in Europe at the time of his birth, settled in Manhattan by the time he was 6, and ...

Mother was African-American; father was Italian

Latino roles:
Breaking Bad (Gustavo Fring); Better Call Saul (Gustavo Fring); The Get Down (Pastor Ramon Cruz); Drunk History (Andres Pico); Maze Runner (Jorge); South Beach (Robert Fuentes); Sherrbaby (Parole Officer Hernandez); A Killer Within (Vargas);Pinero (Miguel Algarin); Naked City (Chaz Villanueva); Twilight (Reuben Escobar); The People (Anthony Rivera); New York Undercover (Adolfo Guzman); Bakersfield P.D. (Det. Paul Gigante)

13. Jennifer Esposito

Actress | Crash

Jennifer Esposito was born on April 11, 1973 in Brooklyn, New York, to Phyllis, an interior decorator, and Robert Esposito, a computer consultant and music producer.

Esposito launched her career with an appearance on Law & Order (1990) in 1996. She went on to play the character of "Stacey ...


Latina roles:
Taxi Brooklyn (Dr. Monica Pena); Mamitas (Miss Ruiz); Bending the Rules (Garcia); American Crude (Carlos); Crash (Ria); Snow Wonder (Pilar)

14. Vanessa Ferlito

Actress | Death Proof

Vanessa Ferlito was born on December 28, 1977 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA. She is an actress, known for Death Proof (2007), Grindhouse (2007) and CSI: NY (2004).


Latina roles:
Nothing Like the Holidays (Roxanna Rodriguez); 24 (Claudia Hernandez); Undefeated (Lizette Sanchez)

15. James Franco

Actor | 127 Hours

Known for his breakthrough starring role on Freaks and Geeks (1999), James Franco was born April 19, 1978 in Palo Alto, California, to Betsy Franco, a writer, artist, and actress, and Douglas Eugene "Doug" Franco, who ran a Silicon Valley business. His mother is Jewish and his father was of ...

Father was Portuguese and Swedish; mother is Ashkenazi Jewish

16. Michael Galante

Actor | Good Trouble

Michael is from Suffern, New York. Michael graduated from Hamilton College with a degree in biology. He was in graduate school for medicine when he was discovered by a British film director in New York City who encouraged Michael to seriously pursue an acting career. Michael has since then been ...

Father is Italian, mother is Filipino

Latino roles:
Case 347 (Alejandro Luna); Noches con Platanito (Armando Hernandez); Fall Into Me (Kidd Lopez); Jane the Virgin (Alex Menendez); Rizzoli and Isles (Alberto Santana)

17. Erica Gimpel

Actress | Fame

Erica Gimpel burst onto the scene as the unforgettable "Coco" in the international hit series Fame (1982). Since that time, she has appeared in dozens of feature films and television shows. She played "Angel Brown" in the NBC series Profiler (1996) and appeared for six seasons as "Adele Newman" in ...

Mother is African-American; father is Slavic

Latina roles:
Penny Ante: The Motion Picture (Dale Martinez); Fame (Coco Hernandez)

18. Ashley Graham

Actress | Love Advent

Ashley Graham was born on October 30, 1987 in Lincoln, Nebraska, USA as Ashley Ann Graham. She is a producer and actress, known for Love Advent (2011), Maroon 5 feat. Cardi B: Girls Like You (2018) and DNCE: Toothbrush (2016). She has been married to Justin Ervin since 2010.

Mother is German, father is English; (I think she looks a lot like Cuban actress Eva Mendes)

19. Ariana Grande

Actress | Sam & Cat

Ariana was born on June 26, 1993 in Boca Raton, Florida to Joan Marguerite Grande, a chief executive officer for Hose-McCann Communications & Edward Charles Butera, a graphic designer/founder of IBI Designs Inc. She began her career in 2008 in the Broadway musical, 13 before playing the role of Cat...

Italian (Sicilian and Abruzzese); birth name Ariana Grande-Butera

20. Lindsay Hartley

Actress | Passions

Lindsay Hartley is an American actress and singer.

She was born Lindsay Nicole Korman in Palm Springs, California, and is of Russian Jewish (father) and Greek and Italian (mother) origin. Singing since age eleven, Hartley was a national pre-teen talent winner of the Young Miss America Beauty Pageant...

Mother is Greek and Italian; father is Ashkenazi Jewish; birth name Lindsay Nicole Korman; formerly married to actor Justin Hartley

Latina roles:
All My Children (Dr. Cara Castillo); Days of Our Lives (Arianna Hernandez); Passions (Theresa Lopez-Fitzgerald)

21. Avan Jogia

Actor | Twisted

Vancouver native, Avan Jogia landed his first acting role as 'Danny Araujo 'on the award-winning TV movie drama A Girl Like Me: The Gwen Araujo Story (2006), directed by Oscar nominee Agnieszka Holland. Jogia followed up with a recurring role on the SyFy Channel hit series Caprica (2009) as well as...

Mother is English, Welsh, and German; father is Indian

Latino roles:
Streets of Hope (Danny Delgado); A Girl Like Me: The Gwen Araujo Story (Danny Araujo)

22. Masiela Lusha

Actress | George Lopez

European-born actress/writer Masiela Lusha portrayed "Carmen Lopez" for five seasons as George Lopez's rebellious and passionate daughter on the syndicated ABC series, George Lopez (2002). She was born on October 23, 1985 to parents Max and Daniela. Raised in Tirana, Albania; Budapest, Hungary; and...


Latino roles:
George Lopez show(Carmen Lopez); Las Muertas de Juarez(Araceli)

23. Jay Manuel

Producer | America's Next Top Model

Jay Manuel was born on August 14, 1972 in Springfield, Illinois, USA. He is known for his work on America's Next Top Model (2003), Canada's Next Top Model (2006) and Eve (2003).

Mother is Italian and Czech; father is Malaysian-Indian and Dutch

24. Mark Margolis

Actor | Pi

He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1939 and attended Temple University briefly before moving to New York where he studied drama with Stella Adler and at Actors Studio.

Mother was Russian Jewish; father was Polish Jewish Latino roles: Better Call Saul (Hector Salamanca); Breaking Bad (Tio Salamanca); The Fountain (Father Avila); The Tailor of Panama (Rafi Domingo); The Pit and the Pendulum (Mendoza); Delta Force 2: The Colombian Connection (Gen. Olmedo); The Avenging (Pedro Quintana); I Shot Andy Warhol (Louis Solanas)

25. Lou Diamond Phillips

Actor | Courage Under Fire

Lou Diamond Phillips was born on February 17, 1962 in Subic Bay Naval Base, Olongapo City, Zambales, Philippines as Lou Diamond Upchurch. He is an actor and director, known for Courage Under Fire (1996), The Big Hit (1998) and Young Guns (1988). He has been married to Yvonne Boismier Phillips since...

Mother is Filipino; father is English and Scots-Irish; birth name Lou Diamond Upchurch

Latino roles:
Goliath (Oscar Suarez); Elena of Avalor (Victor Delgado); Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Jeff Romero); Training Day (Thurman Ballesteros); The Night Stalker (Richard Ramirez); The 33 (Don Lucho); Blind Spot (Saul Guerrero); Filly Brown (Jose Tonorio); Che (Mario Monje); Pick Up the Pieces (Officer Alfonso); In a Class of His own (Ricardo Donato); A Show of Force (Jesus Fuentes ); La Bamba (Ritchie Valens)

26. Blair Redford

Actor | The Gifted

Blair Redford was born on July 27, 1983 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA as David Blair Redford. He is an actor and producer, known for The Gifted (2017), The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008) and Burlesque (2010).

English, Scottish, Irish, and German

Latino roles:
Switched at Birth (Ty Mendoza); Passions (Miguel Lopez-Fitzgerald)

27. Zuleikha Robinson

Actress | Hidalgo

Zuleikha Robinson was born on June 29, 1977 in London, England. She is an actress, known for Hidalgo (2004), The Merchant of Venice (2004) and Homeland (2011). She was previously married to Sean Doyle.

Mother is Indian; father is White English

Latina roles
: New Amsterdam (Eva Marquez); Covert Affairs (Bianca)

28. Antonio Sabato Jr.

Actor | The Big Hit

Antonio Sabato Jr. was born on February 29, 1972 in Rome, Lazio, Italy as Antonio G. Sabato Jr. He is an actor and producer, known for The Big Hit (1998), Shark Hunter (2001) and General Hospital (1963). He was previously married to Cheryl Moana Marie Nunes and Tully Jensen.

Mother is Czech; father is Italian

Latino roles:
The League (Father Zaragosa); Testerone (Pedro Alesandro)

29. Max Schneider

Actor | Love & Mercy

Actor/Singer Max Schneider began performing at the age of three and hasn't stopped since. He started off singing and dancing for family and friends on his living room table, but ended up singing and dancing on a Broadway stage.

He began his professional career in the Broadway musical, 13, and things...

Mother is German and English; father is Ashkenazi Jewish

Latino role:
Crisis (Ian Martinez)

30. Cassie Steele

Actress | Degrassi: The Next Generation

Toronto native Cassie Steele joins the cast of THE L.A. COMPLEX as Abby. The aspiring Canadian actress is best known for her role as Manny Santos on 10 seasons of the internationally acclaimed drama series Degrassi: The Next Generation. Cassie was a 2003 nominee and the 2002 winner of a Young ...

Mother is Filipino; father is English

Latina roles:
The L.A. Complex (Abby Vargas); Degrassi: The Next Generation (Manny Santos); Degrassi Takes Manhattan (Manny Santos); Degrassi Goes Hollywood (Manny Santos); Degrassi Minis (Manny Santos); Degrassi Spring Break Movie (Manny Santos); The Best Years (Lucy Ramirez-Montoya)

31. Daniel Sunjata

Actor | One for the Money

Daniel Sunjata (born Daniel Sunjata Condon on December 30, 1971) is an American actor who performs in film, television and theater. He is best known for his role as "Franco Rivera" in the FX television series, Rescue Me (2004). Sunjata also starred as "Paul Briggs" in USA Network's series, Graceland...

African-American, Irish, and German

Latino roles:
Lullaby (Officer Ramirez); Rescue Me (Franco Rivera); Weakness (Alejandro)

32. Ronnie Spector

Soundtrack | Jingle All the Way

Ronnie Spector was born on August 10, 1943 in Harlem, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA as Veronica Bennett. She has been married to Jonathan Greenfield since January 16, 1982. They have two children. She was previously married to Phil Spector.

Mother was African-American; father was Irish; birth name Veronica Yvette Bennett; formerly married to music producer Phil Spector

33. Suzanne Vega

Soundtrack | Closer

Suzanne Vega was born on July 11, 1959 in Santa Monica, California, USA as Suzanne Nadine Vega. She has been married to Paul Mills since February 11, 2006. She was previously married to Mitchell Froom.

Mother is German and Swedish; father is English, Irish and Scottish; took the name of her stepfather, Puerto Rican novelist Edgardo Vega Yunque

34. Travis Winfrey

Actor | Pretty Little Liars

Travis Winfrey was recently selected to attended The Sundance Directors Lab and is currently writing and producing Independent Films and Television projects.

He's appeared on numerous television shows in recent years, including "Pretty Little Liars", "Being Mary Jane", "Single Ladies", "Dexter," "...

Italian and Trinidadian

Latino role:
Pretty Little Liars (Officer Lorenzo Calderon)

35. Catherine Zeta-Jones

Actress | Chicago

Catherine Zeta-Jones was born September 25, 1969 in Swansea, West Glamorgan, Wales, UK. She is the daughter of Patricia (Fair) and David James "Dai" Jones, who formerly owned a sweet factory. Her father is of Welsh descent and her mother is of English, Irish, and Welsh ancestry. Her brothers are ...

Mother is Irish; father is Welsh; named after her grandmothers, Catherine Fair and Zeta Jones; married to actor Michael Douglas

Latina and Spanish roles:
Cocaine Godmother (Griselda Blanco); The Legend of Zorro (Elena de la Vega); The Mask of Zorro (Elena); Traffic (Helena Ayala)

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