Next week's elections have caused a lot of hollering about Latinos and our impact, which got us thinking about the most inspiring Latino politicians we've seen on TV and in movies (since we haven't had that many in the United States government in real life yet!).
Here are our favorite Hollywood politicians:
1. Hollywood Politicians: Benicio del Toro
Benicio del Toro absolutely nailed his depiction of Latino revolutionary Che Guevara in Steven Soderbergh's epic two-part film Che. From the fiery rhetoric to the melancholic dedication to a nearly impossible cause, del Toro managed to humanize a man who has become mythical since his death.
2. Hollywood Politicians: Jimmy Smits
If we had our way, Jimmy Smits would actually run for president, in real life. Political aspirations aside, Smits fully embodied his role as Congressman Matt Santos from Texas who went on to hold the office of the President on The West Wing. Santos's character was actually based on current U.S. President Barack Obama, which is why the story line felt so real. We're still waiting for you to run, Jimmy!
3. Hollywood Politicians: Edward James Olmos
As Admiral William Adama on Battlestar Galactica, Edward James Olmos plays a stoic, conflicted leader of the remaining humans who have survived the Cylon wars. Olmos was the perfect choice to play the weary, battle-hardened man—who eventually succeeds in saving the human race.
4. Hollywood Politicians: Martin Sheen
As President Josiah "Jed" Bartlett on Aaron Sorkin's The West Wing, Martin Sheen stepped into the role he was born to play. His Emmy-nominated turn made us all fall in love with the world of the White House and motivated a lot of TV viewers to learn more about politics and the office of the president. For this, we salute Mr. Sheen.
5. Hollywood Politicians: Gael Garcia Bernal
Gael Garcia Bernal plays a young Che Guevara in Walter Salles luminous film The Motorcycle Diaries. Inquisitive, brave and with an isatiable thirst for knowledge, Bernal captures the early motivations of a man who would go on the change the world.
6. Hollywood Politicians: Lisa Vidal
Lisa Vidal plays the First Lady of the United States on the NBC sci-fi thriller, The Event. As Christina Martinez, the Cuban wife of President Elias Martinez (played by Blair Underwood), Vidal is the voice of reason. Time and time again, she advises Elias to follow his heart and not what his manipulative advisors suggest—proving that behind every powerful man is an even more powerful woman.