Even though she came into contact with the crème de la crème of Hollywood, the American-born Cuban actress Eva Mendes, the beauty who warmed the hearts of many with her skillful film roles, never knew that she would follow the path of showbiz as an adolescent.
Mendes decided to try her hand at acting after a talent manager convinced her to do so – after she discovered her picture in a friend’s portfolio. To make sure that nothing stood in the way of her stardom, Eva broke off her studies at university and concentrated on acting, but this didn’t give her any satisfaction at first. Especially her debut, a film called Children of the Corn V: Fields of Terror, was received with great disappointment by the actress, who was not impressed by her performance. As a result, she got an acting teacher to hone her skills instead of licking her wounds forever.
Apparently, it was the right decision for the American actress, who has become a household name not only in acting but also as a model, fashion designer, and businesswoman wearing many other hats. Some of her remarkable roles can be seen in 2 Fast 2 Furious, Ghost Rider, Training Day, Stuck on You, Hitch, and The Other Guys.
As a model, Eva Mendes has modeled and acted as an ambassador for many top brands such as Magnum Ice Cream, Cocio Chocolate Milk, Reebok, Pantene Shampoo, Calvin Klein, Revlon, and a host of others. She is also the designer behind a fashion collection for New York & Company.
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Eva Mendes: Biography
The Cuban beauty was born on 5 March 1974 in Miami, Florida. Her parents – Eva Pérez Suárez and Juan Carlos Méndez, both from Cuba – later divorced, whereupon Eva grew up under her mother’s care in the Los Angeles suburb of Glendale.
Raised in a Roman Catholic home, Eva Mendes cultivated the idea of joining the convent as a Catholic nun, a dream that obviously went with the wind. She received her education at Hoover High School in Glendale and continued her training as a marketing student at California State University, Northridge, but had to drop out of college to pursue an acting career.
After some unsatisfactory performances, she began to make waves in the industry with films such as A Night at the Roxbury, My Brother the Pig, Urban Legends: Final Cut as well as Exit Wounds, which came in the early years of her entry into the industry. She soon hit the jackpot with her appearance in Crime Training Day, which opened the floodgates to bigger roles and earned recognition at the awards ceremonies.
Between 2002 and 2003, Mendes graced the cast of films like All About the Benjamins, 2 Fast 2 Furious, Out of Time, Stuck on You, and Once Upon a Time in Mexico. The latter earned her a place on the nomination list for the Teen Choice Awards. Her female lead in the 2005 film Hitch can be considered her big breakthrough when she made the list of the first minority actors to embody a leading character in a successful romantic comedy. In the course of her successful, blossoming career, which spans up to two decades, the Hollywood favorite has had numerous film auditions associated with her name. The stories of Wendell Baker, Guilty Hearts, Ghost Rider, Cleaner, The Spirit, Last Night, and The Place Beyond the Pines are just some of her exploits in the film industry.
As expected, she has been nominated for many prestigious awards in major categories and has taken home the award for some of them.
Eva Mendes also graced the music videos of many top artists, including the Pet Shop Boys in their 1996 music video for “Se a Vida é (That’s The Way Life Is)”, and later appeared in Aerosmith’s 1997 music video for “Hole in My Soul” and Will Smith’s 1998 music video for “Miami”. Later in 2014, she appeared in the music video for “The Strokes’ The End Has No End” by The Strokes.
The spirited entertainer is also known for her exploits as a model, some of which were performed naked. Her print advertising for Calvin Klein’s perfume Secret Obsession (nude) was banned in the United States, while her nude photo was also used by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) for their anti-fur campaign in 2007. She has also worked with other top brands such as Revlon, Morgan de Toi, Reebok, Peek & Cloppenburg, Magnum, Campari, the chocolate milk brand Cocio, and many others too numerous to mention.
Husband, Kids, Baby, and Other Family Family Facts
Eva Mendes was born into the family of Eva Pérez Suárez (mother), who at various times worked at the Mann Chinese Theatre and in an aerospace company, and into that of Juan Carlos Méndez (father), who ran a meat distribution company. Her parents later went their separate ways.
Her siblings include an older sister (Janet) and an older brother who died in 2016. Juan Carlos Méndez, Jr., her late brother, was born in 1963, but later died of throat cancer. From the latter relationship of her father, Eva has a younger half-brother named Carlos Alberto “Carlo” Méndez.
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Although they are not yet married, Eva Mendes and Canadian actor Ryan Gosling have been a couple since 2011. The couple shares two daughters. The actors and their children – Esmeralda (born September 12, 2014) and Amada Lee (born April 29, 2016) – currently make many people green with envy because of their close relationship. They raise their children bilingually and biculturally.
The actress was romantically involved with George Augusto from 2002 to 2011.