I was born on the 25th of August of 2003 in the huge, energetic, chaotic and very beautiful Mexico City. I met my best friend just a month after my first birthday, when my sister Mia was born. You could say that in a way, she is the best birthday present I ever got. Mia and I were very different from each other. She couldn’t speak until she turned four, me on the other hand, I spoke too much at just the age of two. My mom got me into a lot of different sports; soccer, basketball, tennis and even golf. I wasn’t good at any of them, but every time we scored a point I would be the most cheerful and loud kid out of the bunch, even if we were losing by a long shot. My mom quickly realized that I had a different type of talent, one that wouldn’t shine that much on a soccer field. So when I was four, she signed me up to a musical theater school for kids called “Stage Company”, in the historic “Teatro Libanes”. She didn’t know it then, but as soon as my feet touched the stage, my life changed forever. At that moment, looking at the empty seats in front of me, I knew I wanted to be an actor. I don’t know what made me feel that way, I guess it was just meant to be.
I continued my studies at Stage Company for the years to come, participating in a lot of different plays. I remember one of my favorites was “Alice in wonderland”, where I played that one funny purple cat. I remember this play specifically because it was the first time I improvised on a stage. For whatever reason, one of my partners didn’t show up for a scene. I was shocked, and got very nervous, but I knew the show had to continue.
Me playing Cheshire Cat.
So I just started to improvise. I can’t remember exactly what I said, or what I did, but I remember I made people laugh. Suddenly, all that anxiety I was feeling turned into joy the moment I heard those laughs. That made me feel good, so for the rest of the show I continued to let myself go and just do whatever my heart told me. At some point, I was no longer thinking about lines or scenes, I was not even thinking about the laughs anymore. I was just living in the moment;
I felt free.
And it’s the search for that feeling that has driven my life ever since.
When I turned nine years old I told my mom I wanted to be a professional actor. She told me I had all her support, but that I had to ask my teachers what to do; And so I did. I arranged a meeting with one of my teachers and asked her to explain to me how to start working. She gave me a list of social media sites my mom could follow for information, and told me she would contact me if there were any auditions. After a while I got an audition for a small role in a show called “Cocina de hacienda”. I got the part, and my excitement was on the roof. This was the first step to making my dream come true. It was only one day of shooting, but it was a very long and hard day. I had to wake up at 4:00am, which I wasn’t used to at all. Then, we had to drive all the way to the outskirts of Mexico City. It was cold, and I had no trailer so I had to stay in the car until they called me to set. We finished really late, and I was extremely tired. My mom was sure I would quit acting after that day, but to her surprise, I fell even more in love with it. That day, acting gave me an opportunity to do something completely different. I went to a new place, made new friends and I even learned how to ride a bicycle for one of the scenes. It was hard, but very fun too.
Me on the set of “Cocina de hacienda”
My mom knew then that being an actor was not just a hobby, it was what I wanted to do with my life.
Me on the set of “Cocina de hacienda” with my new friend Mikel Alonso
Me on the set of “Cocina de hacienda” with my new friend Poncho Cadena
I continued going to the few auditions I knew about and taking my lessons at Stage Company. In the summers, I would go to a camp in Southern California called Pali adventures, where they had an acting and film program. However, Pali was not focused only on that, this was a summer camp made for all types of kids. There were lots of different programs like; cooking, fashion, stunt training, music, magic, comedy, and even motorsports. The reason why this is important is because I got to meet kids with all sorts of different interests and backgrounds. I believe that relationships and experiences are vital to an artist’s life, and I was lucky enough to grow up surrounded by people very different to
me. At camp I made friends from varying parts of the world; And even though our dreams and cultures were different, summer camp made us the best of friends.
Me with my cabin.
For the people in the acting program, we were in charge of making a performance for the entire camp at the end of the week. As an actor, this made me grow in a very unique way. Writing and performing for people of all sorts of ages and nationalities was tricky, but I quickly realized that the most simple things are the ones that everyone can relate to. I remember that in my last year at Pali there were only two people who signed up for the acting program, me and a little girl.
Me performing at camp.
My friends told me to change programs and do something else, but I decided to stay. Just two days before the night we had to perform I finally came up with an idea based on one of the improv games I knew, it was very simple. The scene was in an airport, where the little girl would be sitting waiting for a flight. I would come into the scene, sit right next to her and just be the most annoying person I could. We didn’t speak a word, it was all physical comedy, and that was the trick to making everyone laugh. Kids, teens and even the adults in charge enjoyed the performance. After that show, five people signed up for the acting program for next week. My years in Pali showed me that storytelling can bring us together; And that not much is needed to make that happen.
Sometimes, an honest smile is more than enough.
After six years of being a camper, I already had a friend in every continent in the world.
Me with friends at the film program.
A note from one of my Film counselors
One day when I was eleven, I finally got my first recurring role in a show. I was cast as “El Gato” in the Telemundo TV show “La querida del centauro”. I still have the video of when my mom told me this news, every now and then I look at it and I’m reminded of just how happy I am to do what I love for a living. I was very lucky to be surrounded by not only talented and passionate people, but also very kind human beings. They treated me like a friend since day one, and even though I was the youngest one on set, I never
felt out of place. I will always remember the day I sat at the directors chair and Mauricio Cruz (my director) let me try his headphones on and yell cut when the scene was over. It was those kinds of moments that showed me that beyond anything else, filmmaking can give you a family. I think of them to this day, and I hold them close to my heart. They were the first family I ever had outside of my own.
Me on the set of “La querida del Centauro” with Michel Brown, Ludwika Paleta and Jaime del Águila (2015)
Me on the set .
I did two seasons of “La querida del centauro” and a few smaller roles in other shows for some years. During that time I was able to learn from very important actors like: Humberto Zurita, Ludwika Paleta, Michel Brown, Sandra Echeverria, Silverio Palacios, etc. With time I started to get more and better auditions, until I eventually landed my first lead role in a movie at fourteen years old. I was playing one of the four leads (Pedro) in Carlos Armellas movie “Go youth”. This was my first movie, and it was a big challenge. We had a lot of rehearsals with our coach Viridiana Olvera, who was also the casting director of the movie. I think this project showed me that I can play characters very different from myself and still have fun.
After this experience I was a better actor.
“Go Youth” was nominated for best picture on the 18th edition of the Morelia Film Festival.
After “Go youth” two more movies where I was also the lead character came; “MexZombies” (Tavo) and “No Abras La Puerta” (Fausto). One was a comedy, and the other one was a horror movie. Looking back, I think that one of the things I’m most grateful about my career is that I’ve been able to do all sorts of genres. They were both very difficult in their own ways, and for the first time in my acting journey not everyday was fun. There were very tough days, and the responsibility of being a lead started to hit me.
But with time, I learned that as long as those magic moments of freedom are still there, even if it’s not every day, then it’s worth fighting for it. During this time I learned to love acting even when it’s hard. Even with the pressure. Even with the criticisms. Even with all of that, I realized that I still loved it. I think I always will.
On the set of “No abras la puerta” with Ximena Lamadrid.
I continued working, always trying my best to have fun and search for those magical moments of freedom. Eventually, I started to write and direct, which is another big passion of mine. In between acting and school I wrote and filmed a lot of short films, two of them are posted on YouTube (Blinded and Casiarte).
Shot of “Casiarte”, a short film co-written and directed by me that competed in the 48 hour film project.
Shot of “Blinded”, the first short film I wrote and directed. I was fifteen.
Soon I landed another character (Bruno) in a TV show called “Who Killed Sara”, but during the time of filming the pandemic hit. Production stopped, and I had to lock myself in my house. It was during this time that my passion for screenwriting really came to life. While being stuck at home, I took screenwriting workshops (SOCAPA) and wrote several scripts. In a time when I couldn’t go out, screenwriting gave me the tools to feel freedom. At this point in my life I was more than sure that screenwriting and directing is just as big of a passion as acting for me, and that in the future I want to make my own movies. Since then, I’ve continued my studies in film, and I dream of one day being a great filmmaker.
“The Imperfects” (2022)
My latest show is the Imperfects, where I play the chupacabras (Juan Ruíz). This was my first English speaking show, and I filmed it in Canada when I was seventeen. It’s available on Netflix.
And recently I just came back home from South Africa after filming my biggest project to date, the live action adaptation of “One Piece”, where
I play Monkey D Luffy. This show will also be on Netflix.
- Taking piano and singing lessons! Music makes me happy, and I’m working on making it a bigger part of who I am.
- Learning kickboxing and other martial arts! After One piece, I felt inspired to expand my physical abilities
- About to embark on an 80-day trip across the Caribbean! On February 5th I embark on my adventure. I’m looking forward to making new memories.
- Taking an online filmmaking and screenwriting program at NYU!
- Playing a lot of board games, my favorite right now is Catan!
- Continuing my acting journey!
This is just a little bit of who I am, and I hope after reading this you have a better understanding of how much acting, film and storytelling as a whole means to me. I believe that my mission as a human being is to live life as passionately as I can, with all the beautiful and difficult emotions it involves. Being part of an industry that celebrates and shares that with the world is a dream come true, and I hope the emotion I feel on every scene can be experienced by whoever is watching. That the freedom I feel can be
shared through the screen.
Storytelling can inspire, it can create, it can heal.
It can make you laugh, cry, get angry, or scared. It can make you feel.
Storytelling is my passion, It’s what makes me feel alive.
I’m a storyteller.
In my eyes, everyone is.
Iñaki Godoy Jasso
I want to thank my family for always supporting my dreams;
Mom, dad, and Mia. I love you.