LOS ANGELES – Mexican actor Omar Chaparro, who plays the villain in the upcoming movie “Show Dogs,” told EFE that Hollywood is certainly “opening its doors to Latinos.”
The actor, known for movies such as “Pulling Strings” and “How to Be a Latin Lover,” has a role in the comedy “Overboard” – now in theaters – starring Eugenio Derbez.
“Many of us Latino actors are putting our noses to the grindstone,” the actor told EFE in a phone interview from western Mexico, where he is filming a new movie. “And it’s a good thing to have Eugenio as our spearhead.”
“Show Dogs” – which opens Friday – tells the story of Max, a lonely Rottweiler who infiltrates a dog show, which he suspects to be a front for illegal exotic animal sales.
“I was attracted to the fact that the character was different from what we Mexicans normally play in Hollywood,” said the 43-year-old actor.
“We usually get roles portraying illegal immigrants, dishwashers, gardeners ... And this character is a smuggler,” he said. “It’s not a very proud profession, but I liked it because people know me as a comedian, and playing a villain takes me out of my comfort zone.”
Despite his opinion that Latinos often play villains in Hollywood films, the actor said that he picks his projects regardless of what his fellow Mexicans think.
“At the end of the day, it’s work,” Chaparro said. “I always try to imbue my characters with something different. It’s about an endearing villain, with certain traits and personality that make him very entertaining to watch. He is very human.”
The family film, a hybrid of real-life action and CGI, features Will Arnett, as well as the voices of Stanley Tucci, Alan Cumming, Ludacris, Gabriel Iglesias and former NBA basketball player Shaquille O’Neal.
“Show Dogs” is Chaparro’s first big-budget Hollywood film but he just finished filming an even bigger one named “Detective Pikachu,” alongside Ryan Reynolds.
“I came back from shooting in London a few weeks ago,” he said. “I had a blast.”