The Most Famous

ACTORS from Cuba

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This page contains a list of the greatest Cuban Actors. The pantheon dataset contains 13,578 Actors, 20 of which were born in Cuba. This makes Cuba the birth place of the 36th most number of Actors behind Colombia, and Iran.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Cuban Actors of all time. This list of famous Cuban Actors is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Cuban Actors.

Photo of Andy García

1. Andy García (b. 1956)

With an HPI of 65.33, Andy García is the most famous Cuban Actor.  His biography has been translated into 56 different languages on wikipedia.

Andrés Arturo García Menéndez (born April 12, 1956), known professionally as Andy García, is a Cuban-American actor, director and producer. He first rose to prominence acting in Brian De Palma's The Untouchables (1987) alongside Kevin Costner, Sean Connery, and Robert De Niro. He continued to act in films such as Stand and Deliver (1988), and Internal Affairs (1990). He then costarred in Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather Part III (1990) as Vincent Mancini, for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He continued to act in Hollywood films such as Stephen Frears' Hero (1992), the romantic drama When a Man Loves a Woman (1994), and the action thriller Desperate Measures (1998). In 2000, he produced and acted in the HBO television film, For Love or Country: The Arturo Sandoval Story (2000), where he received a Primetime Emmy Award and a Golden Globe Award nominations. He also starred in Steven Soderbergh's Ocean's Eleven (2001) and its sequels, Ocean's Twelve (2004) and Ocean's Thirteen (2007). In 2005, García directed and starred in the film The Lost City alongside Dustin Hoffman and Bill Murray. He also starred in New York, I Love You (2008), the dramedy City Island (2009), the romantic comedy At Middleton (2013), and the crime thriller Kill the Messenger (2014). He has had supporting roles in Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, Book Club, The Mule and the HBO television movie My Dinner with Hervé (all 2018), and the title role in the Father of the Bride remake (2022). In 2005, he won both a Grammy and a Latin Grammy Award for producing Cuban musician Cachao's record ¡Ahora Sí!

Photo of Tomas Milian

2. Tomas Milian (1933 - 2017)

With an HPI of 58.81, Tomas Milian is the 2nd most famous Cuban Actor.  His biography has been translated into 30 different languages.

Tomas Milian (born Tomás Quintín Rodríguez-Varona Milián Salinas de la Fé y Álvarez de la Campa; 3 March 1933 – 22 March 2017) was a Cuban-born actor and singer with American and Italian citizenship, known for the emotional intensity and humor he brought to starring roles in European genre films. A student of Lee Strasberg's, Milian studied method acting at the Actors Studio in New York City. In Italy, he was discovered by director Mauro Bolognini and appeared in supporting roles in several drama films during the late 1950s and early 1960s, including Bad Girls Don't Cry (1959) and as Raphael in Carol Reed's The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965). Throughout the late-1960s and early-1970s, Milian established himself as a dynamic leading actor in a series of Spaghetti Western films, most notably The Big Gundown (1966), Django Kill... If You Live, Shoot! (1967), as well as Sergio Corbucci's parody of the genre The White, the Yellow, and the Black (1975). Dennis Hopper also cast Milian in his 1971 art-house film, The Last Movie. Following a decline in the popularity of Spaghetti Westerns, Milian transitioned to roles in poliziottesco films. After receiving acclaim for his performance as a psychotic killer in Almost Human (1974), he made appearances in Emergency Squad (1974), The Tough Ones (1976) and The Cynic, the Rat and the Fist (1977). After returning to the United States in 1985, Milian continued to perform supporting roles in film productions, including JFK (1991), Amistad (1997), Traffic (2000) and The Lost City (2005).

Photo of Ana de Armas

3. Ana de Armas (b. 1988)

With an HPI of 55.77, Ana de Armas is the 3rd most famous Cuban Actor.  Her biography has been translated into 56 different languages.

Ana Celia de Armas Caso (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈana ˈselja ðe ˈaɾmas ˈkaso]; born 30 April 1988) is a Cuban and Spanish actress. She began her career in Cuba with a leading role in the romantic drama Una rosa de Francia (2006). At the age of 18, she moved to Madrid, Spain, and starred in the popular drama El Internado for six seasons from 2007 to 2010. After moving to Los Angeles, de Armas had English-speaking roles in the psychological thriller Knock Knock (2015) and the comedy-crime film War Dogs (2016). She rose to prominence with her role as the holographic AI projection Joi in the science fiction film Blade Runner 2049 (2017). For her performance as nurse Marta Cabrera in the mystery film Knives Out (2019), she was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical. She subsequently portrayed the Bond girl Paloma in the James Bond film No Time to Die (2021) and Norma Jeane in the biopic Blonde (2022). For Blonde, de Armas became the first Cuban to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress.

Photo of Steven Bauer

4. Steven Bauer (b. 1956)

With an HPI of 54.78, Steven Bauer is the 4th most famous Cuban Actor.  His biography has been translated into 28 different languages.

Steven Bauer (born Esteban Ernesto Echevarría Samson; December 2, 1956) is an American actor. Bauer began his career on PBS, portraying Joe Peña, the son of Cuban immigrants on ¿Qué Pasa, USA? (1977–1979). He played Manolo "Manny" Ribera, the right-hand man of Cuban drug lord Tony Montana, in the 1983 crime drama Scarface. He also played the drug cartel leader Don Eladio Vuente in Breaking Bad (2011) and in Better Call Saul (2017–2022) and the retired Mossad agent Avi Rudin in Ray Donovan (2013–2017). Bauer was born Esteban Ernesto Echevarría Samson, on December 2, 1956, in Havana, Cuba, the son of Lillian Samson Agostini, a schoolteacher, and Esteban Echevarría, a commercial pilot who worked for Cubana Airlines. Bauer's maternal grandfather, whose family names were Samson and Bauer, was Jewish, and immigrated to Cuba from Germany, a refugee looking to escape the devastating effects World War II and Adolf Hitler had on his safety and home country. Bauer's family emigrated from Cuba to the United States on Independence Day, 1960, when he was three years old, shortly after the end of the Cuban Revolution, settling in Miami, Florida. Once in the United States, he began using the name Steven, an English form of his given name, Esteban. He graduated from Miami Coral Park High School in 1974 and went on to study acting at Miami Dade Community College and then at the University of Miami, where he befriended Ray Liotta. Bauer's first substantial role was in the PBS bilingual sitcom ¿Qué Pasa, USA?, playing the teenage son of a Cuban exile family in Miami, from 1977 to 1979. He also appeared in the 1980 TV miniseries From Here to Eternity. He was credited in these and a few other early projects as Rocky Echevarría. In 1981, Bauer starred in the television movie She's in the Army Now, where he met his first wife, actress Melanie Griffith. They both moved to New York City and stayed at Ray Liotta's apartment, while Liotta moved to Los Angeles and stayed at theirs. Both Bauer and Griffith studied under acting teacher Stella Adler, and he appeared in several off-Broadway productions. During this time he adopted the stage name "Steven Bauer". Bauer was given the role of Manny Ribera (the part played by George Raft in the original 1932 version) in the 1983 movie Scarface, even though (like Raft) he was a relatively unknown actor at the time. The producers of Scarface were convinced that he was right for the role based on his strong audition, as well as his authentic Cuban background. His performance drew a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor. In 1986 he had two other important roles. The first was as Det. Frank Sigliano in the Billy Crystal and Gregory Hines cop comedy Running Scared. The second was as an Israeli soldier named Avner in the Canadian CTV television movie Sword of Gideon, which tells the story of Mossad agents hunting down terrorists in the aftermath of the 1972 Munich massacre. The Sword of Gideon script was the basis for Steven Spielberg's later film Munich, which follows the same storyline and borrows heavily from the Sword of Gideon story and script. In 1990 Bauer played the role of DEA agent Enrique "Kiki" Camarena in the television miniseries Drug Wars: The Camarena Story alongside Benicio Del Toro and Craig T. Nelson. That same year, Bauer took over the series lead of the television show Wiseguy from Ken Wahl for the fourth and final season, playing U.S. Attorney Michael Santana after Wahl's character disappears. Since then, Bauer has made his career primarily, though not exclusively, in action films and crime dramas on both the big and small screens, including the movie The Lost City where he served in a minor role alongside the film's star and director Andy Garcia. He also appeared in the motion pictures Primal Fear and Traffic. In 2007 he appeared on an episode of Burn Notice. In 2011, Bauer appeared on the series Breaking Bad playing Mexican drug lord Don Eladio. He stars with Julianne Michelle in the feature film Awakened, a supernatural thriller. More recently, Bauer appeared as ex-Mossad agent turned private investigator Avi in the Showtime series Ray Donovan. Bauer also reprised his Breaking Bad role in 2017 in AMC's prequel Better Call Saul. In addition, he played El Santo in the American version of Queen of the South. Bauer has married four times: first to Melanie Griffith, from 1981 until 1989; second to Ingrid Anderson, from 1989 until 1991; third to Christiana Boney, from 1992 until 2002; and fourth to Paulette Miltimore, from 2003 until 2012. He has two sons: Alexander Griffith Bauer (born August 22, 1985) with Griffith, and Dylan Dean Steven Bauer (born May 14, 1990) with Anderson. In 2010, Bauer was falsely named as the driver of a vehicle that struck and killed 24-year-old Brent Rosenberg of Malibu. Rosenberg was walking on Pacific Coast Highway toward his parked car on the east side of the road when he was struck by a sport utility vehicle. Initial reports said Bauer was the driver of the vehicle but police officials later said it was a different person of the same name involved in the fatality. List of Cubans Steven Bauer at IMDb Steven Bauer at AllMovie Steven Bauer's official MySpace profile

Photo of María Conchita Alonso

5. María Conchita Alonso (b. 1957)

With an HPI of 53.60, María Conchita Alonso is the 5th most famous Cuban Actor.  Her biography has been translated into 25 different languages.

María Concepción Alonso Bustillo (born June 29, 1955), better known as María Conchita Alonso, is a Cuban-American actress, singer, and beauty pageant titleholder who represented Venezuela at Miss World 1975 and placed in the top seven. She has participated in film and television productions, and was nominated for the Independent Spirit Award as Best Leading Actress in 1996 for her role in Caught. As a singer, she has received several gold and platinum records, and has been nominated for three Grammy Awards. Alonso was the first Latin American actress not born in the United States to star in a musical on Broadway, with Kiss of the Spider Woman at the Broadhurst Theatre (1995).

Photo of Chelo Alonso

6. Chelo Alonso (1933 - 2019)

With an HPI of 52.32, Chelo Alonso is the 6th most famous Cuban Actor.  Her biography has been translated into 15 different languages.

Chelo Alonso (born Isabel Apolonia García Hernández, 10 April 1933 – 20 February 2019) was a Cuban actress who became a star in Italian cinema, and ultimately a 1960s cult film heroine and sex symbol in the U.S. She was well known for playing femmes fatales with fiery tempers and sensual dance scenes.

Photo of Ninón Sevilla

7. Ninón Sevilla (1929 - 2015)

With an HPI of 50.69, Ninón Sevilla is the 7th most famous Cuban Actor.  Her biography has been translated into 22 different languages.

Emelia Pérez Castellanos (10 November 1921 – 1 January 2015), known professionally as Ninón Sevilla, was a Cuban-Mexican actress and dancer. Sevilla was born and raised in Centro Habana, a popular section of Havana. As a youth, she thought about becoming a missionary nun, but after she started dancing with success in nightclubs and cabarets, she opted for a career in show business. She adopted her stage name in tribute to the legendary French courtesan Ninon de l'Enclos and began to work in the chorus of the Cuban comedians Mimí Cal and Leopoldo Fernández, respectively known as "Nananina" and "Tres Patines". Sevilla came to Mexico as part of a show starring the Argentinean singer Libertad Lamarque. Her number in the show was so successful that she was soon booked in other spectacles in Mexico City. While performing in the Teatro Lírico, producer Pedro Arturo Calderón saw Sevilla on stage and offered her a film contract. Her debut in cinema was in 1946 in Carita de Cielo with María Elena Marqués and Antonio Badú. From that moment, Sevilla became the exclusive star of Producciones Calderón, and although she had offers from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Columbia Pictures, she turned them down because she was not interested in working in Hollywood. Although from the beginning Sevilla was marked by the eccentricity of her hairdos and gowns, it was director Alberto Gout who established her as one of the ultimate erotic figures of Mexican cinema, leading her in legendary films as Aventurera (1949), and Sensualidad (1950). Besides being directed by Gout also in Mujeres sacrificadas (1952) and Aventura en Río (1953), she also worked with Emilio Fernández "El Indio," who directed her in one of the best films of her career, the classic Víctimas del Pecado (1951); Julio Bracho in Take Me in Your Arms (1954); Gilberto Martinez Solares in Mulata (1954) and the comedy Club de Señoritas (1956); and Alfredo B. Crevenna in Yambaó (1956). In the musical Rumberas film, Ninón Sevilla internationalized the icon of the rumbera like no other of her peers: she was the perfect archetype in several films, in which a "fallen woman" was dignified through dance. She staged the many choreographies of her films, and was the first performer to introduce plots from Santeria rituals in her movies. When she was on top, she had the biggest forums, spectacular sets, dazzling costumes, first-rate technicians and alternated with great figures of Latin American cinema as Joaquín Pardavé, Andrea Palma, Fernando Soler, Pedro Armendáriz, Anita Blanch, Agustín Lara, Domingo Soler, David Silva, Rita Montaner, Ramón Gay, Tito Junco, Andrés Soler, Roberto Cañedo, Fanny Kauffman, René Cardona, Pedro Vargas, Toña la Negra, the trio Los Panchos, as well as Mendive and Perez Prado. By 1950, Ninón Sevilla had consolidated her sex symbol status and was a superstar. Her success led to her being recognized in countries like Brazil and France. In 1955, the future French director François Truffaut made a review of Llévame en tus brazos, in which he wrote: "Is Ninón dancing for glory? No way, never. It is quite clear Ninón is dancing for pleasure!" With the decline of the Golden Age of Mexican cinema, Ninón Sevilla retired from the industry, but returned in 1981 by the hand of Mario Hernández, who directed her in the 1981 film Noche de Carnaval, for which she received the Silver Ariel Award for Best Actress of the Year. Ninón Sevilla debuted on television in 1965 with a small role in the soap opera Juicio de almas, produced by Ernesto Alonso. After the revival of her career, she was invited in 1987 to appear in the telenovela Rosa salvaje, alongside Verónica Castro. She was cast in numerous supporting roles in several telenovelas, as María la del Barrio (1995), Rosalinda (1999) and Qué bonito amor (2012), among others. In 2014, Ninon Sevilla was the subject of tributes from the Mexican Academy of Film Arts and Sciences and the Cineteca of Mexico for her career and influence in their national cinema. Ninon Sevilla had a long relationship with film producer Pedro Arturo Calderón. Eventually, she married Cuban doctor José Gil. When Gil died, she started another relationship and had her only son, the musician Genaro Lozano. Ninon died on 1 January 2015 at the age of 93. Carita de Cielo (1946) Pecadora (1947) Jalisco Fair (1948) Señora Tentación (1948) Revancha (1949) Coqueta (1949) Perdida (1950) Aventurera (1950) Victimas del Pecado (1951) Sensualidad (1951) No niego mi pasado (1951) Mujeres sacrificadas (1952) Aventura en Río (1953) Take Me in Your Arms (1953) Mulata (1954) Amor y pecado (!955) Club de señoritas (1955) Yambaó (1957) Mujeres de fuego (1959) Zarzuela 1900 (1959) Noche de carnaval (1981) Las noches del Blanquita (1981) Viva el chubasco (1984) El cabaretero y sus golfas (1985) Hoy como ayer (1987) Jóvenes delincuentes (1988) Rumbera caliente (!989) Juicio de almas (1964) Tú eres mi destino (1984)... Licha del Rey Rosa salvaje (1987)... Zoraida Cuando llega el amor (1989)... Nina Yo no creo en los hombres (1991)... Emelia Las secretas intenciones (1992)... Julieta María la del barrio (1995)... Caridad La usurpadora (1998)... Cachita Cienfuegos Rosalinda (1999)... Asuncion Tres mujeres (1999)... Yolanda El precio de tu amor (2000)... Dalila Entre el amor y el odio (2002)... Macarena Amarte es mi pecado (2004)... Donia Galia de Caridad Central de abasto (2008)... La Jarocha Como dice el dicho (2012)... Pola Qué bonito amor (2012)... Donia Remedios Muñoz Castillo, Fernando (1993). Las Reinas del Tropico: María Antonieta Pons, Meche Barba, Amalia Aguilar, Ninón Sevilla & Rosa Carmina. Grupo Azabache. ISBN 968-6084-85-1. Las Rumberas del Cine Mexicano (The Rumberas of the Mexican Cinema) (1999). In SOMOS. México: Editorial Televisa, S. A. de C. V. Agrasánchez Jr., Rogelio (2001). Bellezas del cine mexicano/Beauties of Mexican Cinema. Archivo Fílmico Agrasánchez. ISBN 968-5077-11-8. Ninón Sevilla at IMDb Ninón Sevilla at the Cinema of Mexico site of the ITESM (in Spanish) The Cuban History.com The Cuban Bombshell: Ninón Sevilla SU MAJESTAD LA RUMBA... NINON SEVILLA

Photo of William Levy

8. William Levy (b. 1980)

With an HPI of 50.51, William Levy is the 8th most famous Cuban Actor.  His biography has been translated into 39 different languages.

William Gutiérrez-Levy (born August 29, 1980) is a Cuban-American actor and former model.

Photo of Desi Arnaz

9. Desi Arnaz (1917 - 1986)

With an HPI of 49.22, Desi Arnaz is the 9th most famous Cuban Actor.  His biography has been translated into 32 different languages.

Desiderio Alberto Arnaz y de Acha III (March 2, 1917 – December 2, 1986), known as Desi Arnaz, was a Cuban-American actor, musician, producer, and bandleader. He played Ricky Ricardo on the American television sitcom I Love Lucy, in which he co-starred with his wife Lucille Ball. Arnaz and Ball are credited as the innovators of the syndicated rerun, which they pioneered with the I Love Lucy series. Arnaz and Lucille Ball co-founded and ran the television production company called Desilu Productions, originally to market I Love Lucy to television networks. After I Love Lucy ended, Arnaz went on to produce several other television series, at first with Desilu Productions, and later independently, including The Ann Sothern Show and The Untouchables. He was also the bandleader of his Latin group, the Desi Arnaz Orchestra. He was known for playing conga drums and popularized the conga line in the United States.

Photo of César Évora

10. César Évora (b. 1959)

With an HPI of 48.18, César Évora is the 10th most famous Cuban Actor.  His biography has been translated into 19 different languages.

César Évora Díaz (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈsesaɾ ˈeβoɾa]; born November 4, 1959) is a Cuban-Mexican actor.

People

Pantheon has 20 people classified as Cuban actors born between 1903 and 1988. Of these 20, 15 (75.00%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living Cuban actors include Andy García, Ana de Armas, and Steven Bauer. The most famous deceased Cuban actors include Tomas Milian, Chelo Alonso, and Ninón Sevilla. As of April 2024, 1 new Cuban actors have been added to Pantheon including Oscar Nunez.

Living Cuban Actors

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Deceased Cuban Actors

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Newly Added Cuban Actors (2024)

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Overlapping Lives

Which Actors were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 4 most globally memorable Actors since 1700.