Once upon a time, Danny Trejo was just a young man battling with a life of drugs, crime and jail time. These days, Trejo is a popular Hollywood actor who is renowned for playing villainous roles. Armed with a pock-marked face, muscled physique, and some legendary tattoos, Trejo has portrayed a vast array of bad guys in numerous movies and TV series. So, which of these roles is he most famous for and how many movies has he been in? All these and more questions are answered below.
Who Is Danny Trejo?
Daniel Trejo was born on the 16th of May 1944 in Echo Park, Los Angeles, California. His father’s name is Dionisio Trejo while his mother’s name is Alice Rivera. The actor grew up in L.A. and fell into crime at an early age. He was first sentenced to juvenile detention for hitting another kid. He subsequently became the getaway driver for his uncle’s robbery gang, and partook in at least five armed robberies.
Trejo was eventually busted in a drug deal and sentenced to a 10-year jail term. During his time in prison, he took up boxing and became the lightweight and welterweight champion. He also embarked on a drug and alcohol rehab program and was thus released as a new man. Upon release, Danny Trejo started working as a counsellor for other addicts.
In the course of this work, the California native had to visit the set of the 1985 movie, Runaway Train. During this visit, he was spotted and offered a job as an extra in the film’s prison scene. This marked the commencement of his Hollywood career.
How Many Movies Has Danny Trejo Featured In?
Since his 1985 debut, Danny Trejo has gone on to appear in over 200 movies and over 75 TV series. On the small screens, the California native has featured in TV series such as Drug Wars: The Camarena Story, Baywatch, NYPD Blue, King of the Hill, Heist, The Young and the Restless, Dr Fubalous, Saint George, NCIS: Los Angeles, From Dusk till Dawn: The Series, The Adventures of Puss in Boots, Big City Greens, Modern Family, Breaking Bad, Desperate House Wives, The X-Files, Brooklyn Nine Nine, Blue Bloods, and Sons of Anarchy.
Sons of Anarchy is an FX series which explores the brotherhood, loyalty, betrayal, and redemption inherent in the lives of a close-knit outlaw motorcycle club. The show featured the likes of Charlie Hunnam and Ron Perlman while Trejo played the role of Romeo Parada, a former Mexican commando-turned-CIA agent who infiltrates a drug cartel. Trejo appeared in 14 episodes of Sons of Anarchy across season 4 and 5 (2011 – 2012).
On the big screen, Danny Trejo has appeared in movies such as Range 15, Desperado, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, The Haunted World of El Superbeasto, Predators, Preggoland, Urban Justice, Point Blank, Con Air, Marked for Death, The Replacement Killers and Animal factor.
Trejo’s movie appearance has been largely limited to supporting roles. The California native, however, nabbed a lead role in the 2012 movie, Bad Ass. Bad Ass is an action film about a decorated Vietnam vet, Frank Vega, who gains viral fame after beating up a bunch of abusive skinheads on a bus. Vega later goes up against a drug lord whilst saving his neighbour and her son from an abusive husband. Bad Ass was written and directed by Craig Moss and featured Trejo as the hero, Frank Vega.
What is Danny Trejo Most Famous For?
Danny Trejo has featured in over 300 movies and TV series combined. He is, however, most famous for his role as Machete in the 2001 movie, Spy Kids. Spy Kids is an action/adventure about two young kids, Carmen and Juni, who become spies in order to rescue their parents, who are ex-spies, from an evil mastermind.
In the movie, Trejo portrayed the role of Machete, a former federal policeman whose weapon of choice is a machete. Machete is also Carmen and Juni’s uncle and reluctantly assists them in the quest to save their parents. Spy Kids was directed by Robert Rodriguez and featured the likes of Teri Hatcher and Antonio Banderas. The movie was a critical and commercial success and has spurned three sequels. They are The Island of Lost Dreams, Game Over and All the Time in The World.
Trejo reprised the beloved character of Machete in these sequels and even got his own movie titled Machete. Machete is a 2010 thriller/action which sees Machete (Trejo) escape to Texas after a powerful drug lord attempts to kill him. In Texas, Machete endures a mundane existence until he is set up by a politician who wants to paint Mexican immigrants in bad light. Machete subsequently becomes a vigilante of sorts; assisting the immigrants whilst pursing his detractors. Asides Trejo, Machete also featured A-listers such as Robert De Niro, Jessica Alba, Steven Seagal, and Michelle Rodriguez.