Ricardo Montalban

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Ricardo Montalban

Born

11/25/1920, Mexico City, Mexico

Died

1/14/2009

Birth Name

Ricardo Gonzalo Pedro Montalban y Merino

Gender

Male
9.3
out of 10
User Rating
38 votes

Biography

EDIT

Ricardo Montalban was born Ricardo Gonzalo Pedro Montalban y Merino on November 25, 1920 in Mexico City, Mexico. He died of congestive heart failure in Los Angeles, California on January 14, 2009. Ricardo had appeared in over 160 acting roles, with his last begin the Moon Over Isla…more

Credits

Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

  • Quotes

    • (Speaking as Khan Noonian Singh in Star Trek) Ricardo: It's better to rule in hell than serve in heaven.

    • Ricardo: In the purest sense of the word, be adventurous in everything. When you don't know anything you can't love anything. So be adventurous in every way.

    • Ricardo$: (When asked about his most challenging role)I was in Tokyo playing a kabuki actor in the movie Sayonara, and it was Christmas and I was homesick, and I couldn't learn the movements of the kabuki, which are so exacting. I actually cried out of desperation. It was one of my lowest ebbs as an actor. Eventually I was able to learn them, and I felt very free, because freedom comes from discipline, and that is the most disciplined theater in the world.

    • Ricardo: Let's open a hand of friendship and love and brotherhood. That is my dream. I'll never see it complete while I'm still alive, but I think this is the beginning, and that is what makes me so happy to see this come to fruition.

    • Ricardo: Mexico is my mother; the United States the best friend I will ever have. And so I dream of the day when my mother will say, 'Ricardo, you have chosen a wonderful friend.' And the day when the friend will say, 'Ricardo, you have a sensational mother.' That is why it is very important to bring us together. Brothers and sisters, love thy neighbor as thyself.

    • Ricardo: Mexico is my mother; the United States the best friend I will ever have. And so I dream of the day when my mother will say, 'Ricardo, you have chosen a wonderful friend.' And the day when the friend will say, 'Ricardo, you have a sensational mother.' That is why it is very important to bring us together. Brothers and sisters, love thy neighbor as thyself.

    • Ricardo: Mexico is my mother; the United States the best friend I will ever have. And so I dream of the day when my mother will say, 'Ricardo, you have chosen a wonderful friend.' And the day when the friend will say, 'Ricardo, you have a sensational mother.' That is why it is very important to bring us together. Brothers and sisters, love thy neighbor as thyself.

    • Ricardo: (Onstage, at the Ricardo Montalban Theater) Most of you know the five stages of the actor. But in my case, there are seven stages. The first stage is, 'Who is Ricardo Montalban?' The second stage is, 'Get me Ricardo Montalban.' Third stage is, 'Get me a Ricardo Montalban type.' The fourth stage is, 'Get me a young Ricardo Montalban.' Fifth stage is, 'Who is Ricardo Montalban?' Sixth stage, in my case because of the 'Spy Kids' movies, is, 'Wait a minute — isn't that Whats-his-name?' Seventh stage — because of this theatre, people passing by a few years from now — is, 'Who the hell is that?'

    • Ricardo Montalban has appeared in more than 50 motion pictures.

    • Ricardo: Freedom cannot exist without discipline...freedom is the right to do what we ought to do.

    • Ricardo: We have seen immorality and violence revealed in the media that in my day would have ended the career of the actor. Unfortunately today, that kind of publicity can make the actor more colorful and bankable.

    • Ricardo: True love doesn't happen right away; it's an ever-growing process. It develops after you've gone through many ups and downs, when you've suffered together, cried together, laughed together.

    • Ricardo: There couldn't be better parents than mine, loving yet strict. They disciplined with love. A child without discipline is, in away, a lost child. You cannot have freedom without discipline.

    • Ricardo: Standing on soil feels so much different than standing on city pavement; it lets you look inward and reflect and see who you really are, while you see a beautiful, unspoiled land as far as the eye can see. It allows your inner life to grow.

    • Ricardo: Politics is too partisan, and sometimes patriotism is cast aside. Patriotism is honor and love of your country and your brothers and sisters. With politics I get the impression that it's all about what's good for the party and not necessarily what's good for the country.

    • Ricardo: It is to TV that I owe my freedom from bondage of the Latin lover roles. Television came along and gave me parts to chew on. It gave me wings as an actor.

    • Ricardo: If you shake your fist, the other guy will shake his too. But if you extend your hand to shake their hand, then they will extend theirs also, and you've made a friend.

    • Ricardo: I shot my leg during a rehearsal! Thank God they were blanks.

    • Ricardo: I found enormous opposition to my religion. It's like if you want to strengthen your biceps, you lift heavy weight, as heavy as you can handle, and work your muscles against resistance until it grows strong. I had to do that with my religion.

    • Ricardo: Hollywood does not write parts for people like me, an elderly gentleman, and when they find out you're crippled, forget about it. No, I'll never work again.

    • Ricardo: Hollywood does not write parts for people like me, an elderly gentleman, and when they find out you're crippled, forget about it. No, I'll never work again.

    • Ricardo: Being the only non-Black was a unique experience. After a few weeks, you're not aware of skin color differences. You see the color; you're not blind, but it doesn't matter. You see the human being first.

    • Ricardo: Because we should always respect other nationalities, I have always tried to play them with dignity.

    • Ricardo: I think of Christopher Reeve who said he would pay two million dollars to be able to feel pain again. What a courageous man! So I have to think that pain is a blessing.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Personal Favorite doesn't even begin to describe how I feel about Ricardo Montalban!

    10
    To me Ricardo Montalban is the "BEST of the Best"!



    Be he hero or villain, there is absolutely NOBODY that can touch him.



    Even though I stopped buying the Star Trek books back in 1994 I absolutely had to buy the The Eugenics Wars Vol I: The Rise and Fall of Khan Noonien Singh, The Eugenics Wars Vol. 2: The Rise and Fall of Khan Noonien Singh, and most ESPECIALLY To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh. The cover picture on that one gives me goosebumps, he's so gorgeous!



    Just to list a few of the TV & Movie roles this courageous actor has appeared in that I have enjoyed:



    TV:



    Fantasy Island where he is and always shall be THE Mr. Roarke.

    The Original Disney Zorro as Ramon Castillo in "Auld Acquaintance."

    Hawaii Five-O as race car driver Alex Pareno in "Death Wish on Tantalus Mountain" & bizarrely as Leonard Tokura in "Samurai."

    The Wild Wild West as a former Confederate Col. Noel Bartley Vautrain in "The Night of the Lord of Limbo." (Very reminiscent of Khan!)

    The TV movie "Mark of Zorro" as the villainous Captain Esteban.

    Columbo as Luis Montoya an ex-bullfighter in "A Matter of Honor", where he incidentally acquired the injury that has him in a wheelchair to this day.

    Star Trek:TOS where he first played the incredibly sexy Khan Noonien Singh in "Space Seed."



    Movies:



    Conquest of the Planet of the Apes & Escape from the Planet of the Apes where he played Armando who risked imprisonment and eventually gave his life for the sake of the fugitive apes.

    The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! where he played the delicious villain Vincent Ludwig.

    Star Trek: The Wrath Of Khan where he reprises his role of Khan Noonien Singh.

    Spy Kids 2 & 3 where he is STILL sexy as the Grandfather of Carmen and Juni.



    I pray he will be around for many years to come, but realize that as he is nearly 88, I may soon lose another of those whom I admire most.moreless
  • The review I have written, is about a performance he did on “The Loretta Young Show”, back in the 50’s and how it made an impression on me through my whole life.moreless

    10
    The oldest memory I have of Ricardo Montalban, is when I was very young, probable about 8 to 10 years old. Back in the 1950’s I remember a character he played on the “Loretta Young Show”. At the first of the program, his character was shinning shoes in the lobby area of a big office building.



    It seems that he had been doing this for a long time and one of his regular customers was in his chair getting his shoes shined. I don’t remember a lot about any conversation that went on between them. Seems they were having usual small take that most people might have.



    Anyway, towards the end of the show the guy that was getting his shoes shined went to a restaurant that was recommended by someone he worked with. When he got to the restaurant, he was greeted by the character that Ricardo Montalban played. He was all decked out in fine evening apparel, a tuxedo I think and the guy from the office building was quite surprised to see him there dressed that way. I don’t remember all of the lines that they said to each other. I do remember the guy that had his shoes shined asking Ricardo Montalban’s character what he was doing there. He responded that he owned the place. The guy was shocked to hear that and then asked him what he was doing shinning shoes. His reply was that he shined shoes for a long time before he got the restaurant and the reason he still shined shoes was to remind him where he came from and he said he did this whenever he got to feeling superior to others because of what he had accomplished and to never get a big head about himself.



    I have never forgotten that and it made an impact on me and how I try to conduct myself towards others. Not that I have done anything special in my life. I have plodded alone like most people, had some success in life and many failures or disappointments as all people do.



    I think Ricardo Montalban is one of the great actors of all time and has never been recognized for his great performances. Like a lot of actors from his generation you could see their own selves coming through in what they did. I would really like to meet him in person or be at least able to werite to him personnaly nd tell him how his performance so long ago made a lasting impression on me. Whenever a movies is in comes on TCM or other places, I look forward to seeing them, he is always superb in whatever I have seem him do.moreless
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