This Yahoo! original series will introduce you to success stories, to the public figures who have crossed cultures and languages to leave a mark in the Latin and US markets. In this episode, get to know Carlos Ponce, the "Cuborican" actor/singer who has attained success crossing over, just by doing what comes naturally.
Many may know him as the flamboyant yoga-instructor from "Couples Retreat", and your abuelita probably likes his music. And that was probably Carlos Ponce's plan all along; to reach as many people as possible no matter the generation, language or cultural background.
Born Carlos Armando Ponce, Jr. in Puerto Rico to Cuban parents, the actor considers himself a "Cuborican" and moved to the US in 1986. As a teen, her pursued the arts, and a part in school play made him realize he could turn acting into a dream career despite aspirations for the music industry.
In his own words:
Given his bi-cultural background, Ponce's career took off after appearing in Mexican novelas, which eventually led to singing. Soon Hollywood came knocking, but don't call it a crossover. "I feel like what I'm doing is just speaking both my languages," says Ponce who considers getting the general market to watch an actor in their own language key to making it.
Despite his success, Ponce stresses the importance of promoting accurate ethnic images having struggled himself with existing stereotypes of what Latinos are expected to look like. "They don't see all the colors," says Ponce referring to networks and movie studios. "The lighter tone of skin doesn't make you Latin, or you're not Latin enough."
Maintaining a positive outlook and looking forward to future career goals, Ponce assures his priorities are not found on a set. "I work to live, not the other way around," says Ponce of his job, which he considers simply a compliment to his personal life as a son and father.
For more Carlos Ponce, you can catch him on Model Latino on nuvoTV.