Antonio Banderas is a prominent actor in Hollywood with many awards under his name. He has been in the industry for several years and even in his 60s, Banderas is still seen as one of Hollywood’s sexiest men.
But he knows how hard Hollywood can be on aging actors, which does not intimidate him because he appreciates his wrinkles and gray hair.Antonio Banderas is a Spanish actor who has left some of the biggest marks in Hollywood. The actor made his debut in an American film with his role in “Philidelphia.”
His performance led him to more successful roles. Banderas has been seen in “Interview with the Vampires,” the classic 1995 film, “Desperado,” and “The Mask of Zorro.”
Antonio Bandares in Malaga Spain in 2017. | Source: Getty Images
The ’90s quickly became Banderas’s exponential rise to stardom. He was the voice of Puss in Boots in the “Shrek” Trilogy. The actor also graced Broadway stages and got to occupy the directorial chair a few times.
Antonio Banderas’s Journey to Self Acceptance
Banderas has a career of many decades in Hollywood. Still, at 62 years old, he is considered one of Hollywood’s sexiest men, aside from being respected as a philanthropist and his impact on the film industry.
But Banderas loves that at his age, he is still seen as sexy and even considers it an achievement, especially when thinking of the pressure actors have to maintain their youth in the industry.
The actor got to play a skilled plastic surgeon in the 2011 Spanish science fiction film, “Skin.” Banderas explained that his character was very dangerous and used his skills and religious beliefs to transform reality.
The “Desperados” star admitted that his role in “Skin” was the evilest part he has ever played. For instance, the character kept a woman hostage and used her as a test goat for his experiments.
Antonio Bandares in Madrid, Spain in 2014. | Source: Getty Images
Banderas was nervous about playing Dr. Robert Ledgard, but at the story’s core, he realized that the movie addressed the layered issues of identity and basically proved that people cannot escape who they are.
Looking at the kind of gruesome activities his character had to do, he said instead of going big with the gestures, he chose to play it flat and be calmer with his movements.
Dr. Ledgard was a self-centered controlling person who had no regard for the next person. The actor thought the manner in which he performed his surgeries mimicked a lot of the reality of the cosmetic industry and the life of Hollywood.
So, he was asked if he had considered getting cosmetic surgery but he said he never wanted it for himself. However, Banderas admitted that he had noticed a few wrinkles and under circles, which do not bother him, even though people have not stopped recommending he get work done on his face.
Banderas revealed that most recommendations came from doctors, but that is the nature of living in Hollywood; any kind of cosmetic procedure is possible, reiterated the actor.
Playing this role and looking at the magnitude of how staying youthful is praised helped Bandaras introspect, and he realized that getting older exposes one to the truth that eventually leads to self-acceptance.
Antonio Bandares in Hollywood in 2020. | Source: Getty Images
In doing a deep soul search, Banderas has also expanded the caliber of his roles. He was one of the few actors that took on gay roles before others were comfortable to. To Banderas, a character’s sexuality is not a big deal; it’s merely one of the many features they can possess.
While Banderas understands that aging is a part of life, he also recognizes his privilege as a man in the acting industry. He knows that it is much harder for women to still have thriving careers as they get older; however, he believes that it is not only Hollywood that is to blame but society.
As new and young actresses come onto the scene, women face harsher impacts on their careers, and Banderas blames it on the societal notion to normalize that only men are allowed to grow and push women to unrealistic beauty standards.
Banderas explained how saddened he was about the reality and image created by society because it only made life difficult. However, the actor tries his best to go through life appreciating what he has, especially his family.
Surviving a Heart Attack Changed His Life
In 2017, Banderas survived a heart attack. He said the experience changed his life for the better because all the important things in his life came to the surface at that moment.
He realized that his purpose in telling stories as an actor, his daughter, family, and friends are the core of his priorities and nothing else.
Antonio Bandares in Malaga Spain in 2017. | Source: Getty Images
It became clear to Banderas that he wanted to delve more into his acting and explore various avenues. While he might be taking things slower he still wants to truly invest himself in the arts, so he decided to buy a theatre.
By doing that, Banderas believes that he will get to do plays that will allow him to enjoy the stage more. The actor also planned to only do specific movies that connect to him.
For all that he has realized, Banderas sees the heart attack as one of the best things to happen to him because it is finally clear to him that he has been focusing on the wrong things.
Any heart attack can be considered a serious medical condition, but Banderas said it was not as dramatic as it was reported to be. When he started feeling unusual, his long-time girlfriend, Nicole Kimpel, gave him an aspirin, and his life was saved. The actor said the attack did not cause a lot of damage but he had to have three stents inserted into his arteries.
To be in his 60s and still be active is astonishing, but when asked what he does to keep fit and healthy, he simply explained that he followed the doctor’s orders.
He confessed that he used to be a smoker but could quit immediately. From there, he ensured he had a good exercise schedule, took an aspirin every morning, and drank water.
Antonio Bandares and Stella in Spain in 2020. | Source: Getty Images
Banderas does not recommend drinking too much, but a glass of red wine every night does no harm. When all of those things are underway, the actor also suggests doing a stress test every six months to keep track of the mind and body.
Antonio Banderas’ Closer Relationship with His Daughters
Before meeting the mother of his child, Banderas was married to Ana Leza for nine years. But when he met Melani Griffith on the set of “Too Much” in 1996, the two fell in love so quickly that they were married in May of the same year.
A year later, Griffith and Banderas welcomed their first child, a daughter named Stella. But after 18 years of marriage, they decided to get a divorce, which was finalized the following year.
Since separating from his wife of almost two decades, Banderas has been dating financial consultant Nicole Kimple since 2022.
However, when Banderas met Griffith she had a daughter, Dakota Johnson, now a famous actress, from a previous relationship with Don Johnson.
When he married her mother she was only five years old, and the actor built a close relationship with Johnson even after he divorced Griffith. He watched her grow and changed her nappies, so he would not let his divorce impact their connection.
The actor is also close to his daughter Stella. He took her as his date to the San Sebastian film festival and they rocked matching outfits.
Even though Griffith and Banderas have stayed friends and kept a healthy co-parenting relationship, she did not join them at the festival. Still, she posted a picture of the father and daughter on her Instagram.
People have admired the close relationship Griffith and her ex-husband have maintained all these years, even though some fans might have thought that Stella had drifted apart from her mother after she changed her name.
Stella had carried her mother and father’s surname from birth, but in 2021, she filed for Griffith to be legally removed from her name.
The reports allegedly reason that Stella wanted to shorten her name and because she did not use the name regularly in her everyday life.
While that might have been considered a big decision impacting a mother-daughter relationship, Griffith and Stella still have a close and loving parental connection.
Banderas spoke very fondly of his ex in his interview with People; he reiterated that even if he and Griffith are divorced he will continue to love her until his last day because they are family.
He was also proud of how they handled their separation because it benefited their children in many ways. “Our kids are enjoying that, which is very important to us. Our kids are our number one priority”, he added.
The former couple even got together for Stella’s birthday, and Griffith commemorated the moment with a picture and accompanied it with the sweet caption, “father-daughter love.”
Griffith also opened up about her life since she ended her 20-year marriage. The actress candidly said that the time alone had been used to reflect.
She also expressed that life after divorce had been both interesting and enjoyable. But she’s also grateful that her children are happy.
While she is getting used to the boring and confusing single life, she is also nervous about throwing herself back into the dating scene. Besides Dakota and Stella, Griffith also has a son Alexandra Bauer, whom she shares with actor Steven Bauer.
Banderas was honored with a Hollywood Actor Award for his performance in ” Pain and Glory” and he was lucky to have his stepdaughter hand him his award, which she followed with a sweet tribute.
Johnson spoke about how unpredictable life can be when parents remarry. Some situations lead to traumatic childhoods that eventually feed into one’s adult life. But if one is lucky enough to get a good amount of therapy, she believes things may take a more positive turn.
As Johnson went through the possible scenarios of starting a new life with a parent, she pointed to how lucky she was with Bandares coming into her life.
Antonio Bandares and Dakota Johnson in California in 2019. | Source: Getty Images
She was lucky to have been blessed with a bonus dad who brought light and creativity into her home. His presence inspired Johson in many positive ways and he remains someone she will forever look up to.
But with her mother marrying Bandares, Johnson also mentioned how lucky she was to be blessed with a little sister, whom she adores.
Despite the end of his long marriage, Banderas and his ex-wife have managed to keep their family together and over the years, they have only improved. Now they get to see their blended family grow, and their children follow in their footsteps while leading successful lives.