Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Another great Danny Trejo story...

courtesey of IMDB:

Kind hearted Robert De Niro has spent time visiting jails offering help to prison convicts. De Niro met actor Danny Trejo on the set of Michael Mann's 1995 crime epic Heat, and he was intrigued to hear the Hollywood tough guy - who is a reformed criminal - regularly gives motivational talks to prison inmates. And Trejo was quick to invite the Hollywood legend along. He says, "I always ask movie stars to come out to jails with me and talk. That guy (De Niro) actually showed up. He went out to jail where everybody was hardcore. And he came and talked. On his own. I was so sure he wouldn't turn up, I didn't put his name on the list. Then all of a sudden we got a call from the front desk, saying, 'We got Robert De Niro down here!'"


Having interviewed a lot of Hollywood personalities, Danny Trejo was by far the most interesting and lively. I remember when I asked the ex-con-turned-actor what he did before he was an actor, and he told me rather bluntly, "Armed robbery." He wasn't joking. The dude served time, but then turned his life around when he got the opportunity to teach Eric Roberts how to box in 1985's Runaway Train. Now the dude pops up in at least five movies a year, and while I loved his starring role in the pseudo-film Machete, which is supposed to turn into a straight-to-DVD feature, my favorite Danny Trejo moment this year was the character he played in Rob Zombie's awful remake of Halloween. Trejo plays Ismael, this compassionate orderly at the looney bin that houses Michael Meyers when he was a kid. What was remarkable about the role was that Trejo looked like this vunerable guy as opposed to his usual biker motif, which has served has reliable typecast for sometime.

After the scene where Meyers smashes Ismael's head in with a TV, I was pretty much done watching that film. Maybe someone could go back and make a spin-off film about that character. That's something I would love to see.

Oh, and look what I found on YouTube:


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