Who is Benjamin Bratt?
American actor and producer Benjamin Bratt, was born in San Francisco, California USA, on 16 December 1963, making Sagittarius his zodiac sign. He’s appeared in nearly 70 TV series and movies, but is probably still known best for starring as Eric Matthews in the 2000 action crime comedy movie “Miss Congeniality”, directed by Donald Petrie, and which also starred Sandra Bullock and Michael Caine. It follows an FBI agent who’s entered the Miss US beauty pageant, trying to stop a terrorist group from bombing the event; the movie won seven of its 15 award nominations.
Education and early life
Benjamin was raised in San Francisco alongside his two older and two younger siblings, by their father Peter Bratt Sr. who was a sheet metal worker, and mother Eldy (nee Banda) who was a political activist and nurse; Eldy’s Peruvian, and she moved to the US with her family when she was 14.
Benjamin became interested in acting while attending Lowell High School; he was a member of its drama club and part of its Lowell Forensic Society, while he was also into playing sports with his peers, excelling in baseball.
Benjamin matriculated in 1982 and then enrolled at University of California, Santa Barbara from which he graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in 1986; he was a member of the fraternity Lambda Chi Alpha. He continued his education at the American Conservatory Theatre, but quit half a year before he could earn his Master of Fine Arts degree, wanting to pursue acting.
Roles in movies
Benjamin’s debut film role was playing Sergeant Rosendo Juarez in the 1988 crime drama “Juarez”, and some of his following roles were also in 1988, in the crime drama “Lovers, Partners & Spies” and the drama “Police Squad: Gladiator School”, then in the 1990 crime action “Chains of Gold”.
He gained recognition in 1991, when cast to play Felix in the crime action “One Good Cop”, written and directed by Heywood Gould, and which starred Michael Keaton, Rene Russo and Anthony LaPaglia. It follows the life of a New York Police Department detective, and the movie was nominated for only a single award. Some of Benjamin’s following roles were in the 1993 crime drama “Bound by Honor”, the 1996 drama “Follow Me Home” and the 1996 thriller “Woman Undone”.
In 2000, Benjamin played Santen in the action science fiction thriller “Red Planet”, directed by Antony Hoffman, and which starred Val Kilmer, Carrie-Anne Moss and Tom Sizemore. It follows a group of astronauts as they’re exploring Mars, and the film was nominated for a Sierra Award for Best Song at the 2000 Las Vegas Film Critics Society Awards. Some of Benjamin’s most notable performances in the decade were in the 2002 romantic mystery “Abandon”, the 2004 crime action fantasy “Catwoman”, and the 2009 drama “La Mission”.
The year 2013 heard him voice one of the main characters Eduardo Perez – aka El Macho – in the hit animated adventure comedy “Despicable Me 2”, which Chris Renaud and Pierre Coffin directed, and which also starred Kristen Wiig and Steve Carell. It follows the life of super-villain Gru, and the movie won 12 of its 80 award nominations, including two Oscar nominations for Best Animated Feature Film of the Year and Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song.
Benjamin’s three most recent film roles have been in the 2019 crime action “A Score to Settle”, the 2020 musical “Best Summer Ever” and the 2022 western thriller “Dead for a Dollar”.
Roles in TV series
Benjamin made his debut TV series appearance in 1988, when cast to star as Tony Maldonado in all the nine episodes of the crime drama “Knightwatch”, which also starred Calvin Levels and Don Franklin, and follows a group of vigilantes who call themselves The Knights.
In 1990, Benjamin played Eduardo Cruz in 13 episodes of the crime action “Nasty Boys”, but the ‘90s then saw him appear in only two more series: an episode of the musical comedy talk-show “Late Night with Conan O’Brien”, and the crime mystery “Homicide: Life on the Street”. but from 1995 through 2009, he played Detective Reynaldo ‘Rey’ Curtis in 95 episodes of the crime mystery “Law & Order”.
In 2005 and 2006, Benjamin starred as Lieutenant Colonel Tim Tisnewski in the action thriller “E-Ring”, created by David McKenna and Ken Robinson, and which also starred Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor and Dennis Hopper. It follows the life of Special Forces commando Jim Tisnewski, and the series won two of its four award nominations. In 2008 and 2009, Benjamin starred as William Banks in all the 26 episodes of the drama “The Cleaner”, and from 2016 through 2018, he portrayed Jahil Rivera in the musical drama “Star”, which starred Ryan Destiny, Brittany O’Grady and Jude Demorest, and was created by Tom Donaghy and Lee Daniels. It follows three women from Atlanta, Georgia who’ve founded a musical group, and the series was nominated for seven awards.
Benjamin’s since appeared in only three TV series: he played Javier Delgado in six episodes of the romantic comedy “Modern Family” (2010-2020), Parco Delgado in all the four episodes of the 2022 action adventure mini-series “DMZ” and Cliff Legrand in five episodes of the 2023 crime mystery “Poker Face”.
— Modern Family (@ModernFam) May 3, 2015
Benjamin received special thanks for the 2004 episode “Goodnight, Seattle: Part 2” of the comedy “Frasier”.
He has five producing credits, which include the 2009 drama movie “La Mission”, the 2009 episode “Hello America” of the drama series “The Cleaner” and the 2017 biographical historical documentary movie “Dolores”.
Some of Benjamin’s most recent talk-show appearances have been in “The Kelly Clarkson Show”, “Morning Joe” and “Live with Kelly and Ryan”.
Awards and nominations
Benjamin’s won 12 of his 30 award nominations. Some of his wins include a 2001 Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by the Cast of a Theatrical Motion Picture, for his and his colleagues’ performance in “Traffic”, five ALMA Awards between 1998 and 2009, for his performance in series such as “Law & Order”, “Exiled” and “The Cleaner”, and two Behind the Voice Actors Awards in 2018, for his and his colleagues’ performance in “Coco”.
Love life and relationships
Benjamin avoids speaking about his love life in public, but has still openly identified two women whom he’s been with.
He and famous American actress Julia Fiona Roberts began dating in 1998, but for unknown reasons separated in 2001.
Benjamin began dating American former actress and model Miriam Talisa Soto in 2002; she’s probably still known best for playing Bond girl Lupe Lamora in the 1989 spy action movie “Licence to Kill”. The two exchanged vows on 13 April 2002, after having dated for only three months, and she gave birth to their daughter Sophia Rosalinda Bratt on 6 December that year, while their son Mateo Bravery Bratt followed on 3 October 2005.
Their decision was obviously a good one, as Benjamin’s still married to Miriam Talisa Soto as of April 2023, and they have two children together.
Interesting facts and hobbies
Benjamin’s brother Peter Bratt wrote and directed the 1996 movie “Follow Me Home” and the 2009 film “La Mission”, in both of which Benjamin starred.
He’s been a philanthropist since the launch of his acting career, and is today active with the American Indian Movement, while he supports the American Indian College Fund. Benjamin narrated the 2009 documentary mini-series about Native Americans “We Shall Remain”, and is today a board member of both the Native American Health Center and the Friendship House Association of American Indians.
He enjoys being active on Instagram, and has posted nearly 500 pictures and videos, while more than 260,000 people are following him on the social media network today.
Benjamin’s favorite actor is Orlando Bloom, while some of his favorite movies include “Kingdom of Heaven”, “Tour de Pharmacy” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End”.
Height, eyes and wealth
Benjamin’s age is 59. He has brown eyes and black hair, is 6ft 2ins (1.88m) tall and weighs around 185lbs (84kgs).
Benjamin’s net worth’s been estimated at over $12 million, as of April 2023.