Ricky Martin is nominated for an Emmy Award for his supporting role as Gianni Versace’ longtime partner Antonio D’Amico in American Crime Story’s The Assassination of Gianni Versace. With a worn-down frown, dispirited eyes and an Italian lilt, the Latin pop star transforms himself into the suffering D’Amico to such an extent that viewers may have to look for the cleft in his chin to be sure it is him.
In recent interviews, Martin has said that when acting the part, he unearthed feelings from “the most uncomfortable and saddest part of my life.” That was before he came out in 2010, when his image as the ever-smiling and sassy Latin lover whose bilingual pop songs and “bon bon” shaking dance moves detonated the “Latin pop explosion.” He has said that being “locked in the closet” was his longest-playing real-life acting role.
A Latin superstar today, Martin became a regular onstage performer at age 12, when he joined the Puerto rican pre-teen hysteria machine Menudo. After graduating from the boy band, he started a solo career that would make him a global pop sensation. And over the years, he acted in movies, TV and on Broadway, before hitting the top of his game – so far — as an actor in The Assassination of Gianni Versace.
Take a look at 6 memorable moments from Ricky Martin’s acting career.
Por Siempre Amigos, 1987
In his Menudo days, Martin appeared with other members of the group in a school days soap opera produced in Argentina.
Alcanzar un Estrella, 1991
Martin played to type as the hot singer in a band in the 1991 Mexican movie Alcanzar una Estrella (Reach a Star).
General Hospital, 1994
Before he became one of Latin music’s most successful crossover artists, Martin – and his then-Fabio style hair — seduced English-speaking American audiences on the popular soap opera.
Les Miserables, 1996
Martin got his first chance on Broadway in 1996, when he played Marius in Les Miz.
Martin guest-starred as Spanish teacher David Martinez on the hit Fox show. In was not exactly a dramatic stretch, he performed “I’m Sexy and I Know it” with members of the fictional glee club.
Martin returned to Broadway to play Che in Evita. While the casting was clever, since it brought droves of Martin fans to the theater, it also showcased Martin’s promise in a major role.