Edward James Olmos (born Edward Olmos; February 24, 1947 in Los Angeles, California) is an American actor and director.
Instantly recognizable for his iconic roles, craggy features and authoritative, gravelly voice, Olmos first came to prominence as the mysterious Detective Gaff in the sci-fi classic Blade Runner. Since then he has repeatedly garnered critical acclaim as both an actor and director, and is perhaps most memorable for his roles in Miami Vice, Selena, and Battlestar Galactica (2003). In 1988 he received an Academy Award nomination for Stand and Deliver, in which he played Jaime Escalante, the original Cool Teacher/Stern Teacher combo. You know all those movies about an inner-city school gaining an unusual but inspirational teacher? Yeah, Olmos pretty much originated that role.
Aside from his media career, Olmos is a passionate social activist, political protestor and pioneer for more diversified roles and images of Hispanics in the U.S. media. Following the 1992 Rodney King riots in Los Angeles, Olmos helped to clean up and rebuild communities. He's also the co-founder of the Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival and the Latino Book & Family Festivals, in addition to being the founder of Latino Public Broadcasting. He also makes frequent appearances at juvenile halls and detention centers to speak to at-risk teenagers, and has been an international ambassador for UNICEF.
Basically, Olmos is a seriously cool guy. So say we all.
- 1975 Aloha, Bobby and Rose as Chicano #1
- 1981 Zoot Suit as El Pachuco
- 1981 Wolfen as Eddie Holt
- 1982 Blade Runner as Gaff
- 2017 Blade Runner 2049
- 1988 Stand and Deliver as Jaime Escalante
- 1992 American Me as Montoya Santana
- 1997 Selena as Abraham Quintanilla, Jr.
- 1997 12 Angry Men as Juror #11
- 1998 The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit as Vámonos
- 2000 The Road to El Dorado as Chief Tannabok
- 2000 Gossip as Det. Curtis
- 2010 I'm Still Here as himself
- 2011 The Green Hornet as Michael Axford
- 2017 Coco as Chicharrón
- 2018 The Predator
- 2019 A Dog's Way Home as Axel
- 1984–1990 Miami Vice as Lt. Martin Castillo
- 2003-2009 Battlestar Galactica (2003) as William Adama
- 2011 Dexter as Professor James Gellar
- 2015 Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as Robert Gonzales
- 2018 Narcos as Chucho Peña
- 2018-2023 Mayans M.C. as Felipe Reyes
Tropes in his work:
- What Could Have Been: He got offered the part of Capt. Jean-Luc Picard on Star Trek: The Next Generation. He would eventually play another starship captain.