The Translators are Mike Diaz and Jaime Fernandez and in every podcast they interview Latinos in the entertainment industry about the ups and downs of life in the business.
The Translators interview actor J.W. Cortes aka Detective Alvarez from the hit show "Gotham". He talks to us about his road to landing on a network show and dishes out some words of wisdom every working actor should hear. Plus we ask him why Gotham City doesn't have any Latino villains.
NY POST /
How This NYC Cop Went from Singing on the Subways to TV's 'Gotham'
“Before I joined the Marines, I used to perform in high school musicals and sing Doo Wop on the subways-- it was the Boyz II Men era, so that was ‘in.’ When I came back from Iraq about ten years ago, I was really depressed and almost homeless. I was too afraid to go out and socialize so I met my wife on Match dot com. I went through the Police Academy and became a cop, but I always remembered how much I loved performing, and wondered what it would have been like to have pursued that life. So during my time off, I started trying to be an actor. I’ve been to hundreds of auditions over the last eight years. I did some Off Broadway. Some Off Off Broadway. I got a lot of ‘Under Five’ roles--- that’s what they call roles that have less than five lines. But then recently I auditioned for a recurring role as Detective Alvarez on the show Gotham. I was in Puerto Rico, celebrating my 39th birthday, when I got a call from my manager. She said: ‘I need you to sit down.’ I said: ‘What’s going on?’ She said: ‘Are you ready for this, Detective Alvarez?’ I said: ‘What are you talking about?’ She said: ‘YOU’RE DETECTIVE FUCKING ALVAREZ.’ I just started crying and hugging my kids and thanking my wife for never giving up on me. With this role, I might not have to be a cop much longer.”
"I always loved doing musicals in school, so when I came back from Iraq, I decided I was going to be an actor. I've been in all sorts of TV shows over the last ten years. You know, the kind of roles where people say: 'Hey! Weren't you 'that guy' in 'that show?' I work as a police officer to pay the bills. All the other officers call me Officer Hollywood."