|Born||in Los Angeles, California, USA|
|Died||in Clear Lake, Iowa, USA (plane crash)|
|Birth Name||Richard Steven Valenzuela|
|Height||5' 5" (1.65 m)|
Mini Bio (1)
Ritchie, the 'California Kid' was from a family of poverty stricken fruit pickers and was the first rock star to originate from the West Coast and one of the innovators of 'Latino rock. In an eight month career he scored three hits with 'Come On Let's Go', 'Donna' and 'La Bamba' before being killed in an air crash on February 3rd 1959 which also took the lives of Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper.. He was just 17. Associate producer Daniel Valdez spent 2 1/2 years searching for Ritchie's family then discovered them living just 15 minutes from where he lived. He then spent months learning all about Ritchie before writing a script which he gave to the family for their approval and with it filming went ahead. The part of Ritchie went to the then 25 year old unknown Lou Diamond Phillips who put on 15lbs to get a chubbier face and learned how to sing and play the guitar after he'd past the audition. During the filming Lou married his own 'Donna' Julie Cyphers who was a production assistant on 'La Bamba'.
- IMDb Mini Biography By: Tonyman 5