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Jose Antonio Dominguez Banderas was born in Malaga Spain on August 10 1960 He studied theater at the School of Dramatic Art in Malaga and began his career working with an independent theater company there In 1981 he moved to Madrid and worked in theater and television which led to his debut in Pedro Almodovars Labyrinth of Passion It was Almodovar who picked his artistic name Antonio filmed several films under Almodovars direction including Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown and Tie Me Up Tie Me Down for which he received Spains equivalent of a Best Actor Oscar nomination Banderas made his American film debut starring opposite Armand Assante in the 1992 release Mambo Kings Banderas says that he will never be able to thank Arnie Glimcher enough for what the actor calls the courage to cast him At the time Banderas knew only a handful of English words but through total immersion and 8 hours a day of English lessons he learned the language to the point of dreaming in English His role as the soulful Cuban musiciancomposer Nestor Castillo was his breakthrough into American movies and English-speaking roles Since then he has been working non-stopHis other films include The House of the Spirits with Meryl Streep Jeremy Irons Glenn Close and Winona Ryder Isabel Allendes Of Love and Shadows Miami Rhapsody starring opposite Sarah Jessica Parker and Mia FarrowAssassins with Sylvester Stallone Never Talk To Strangers with Rebecca DeMornay and the comedy Two Much in which he plays the dual role of Art and Bart Dodge The film also stars Antonios real life love Melanie Griffith The film Desperado in which he plays a Mexican musician or Mariachi seems to be his consolidation as the most prominent Latin actor in the United StatesAntonio also appeared in Robert Rodriguez segment of Four Rooms an anthology project featuring work by four progressive directors Rodriguez Quentin Tarantino Allison Anders and Alexandre Rockwell
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