On April 26, the Chilean star will take part in the series Ugly Betty (ABC), and he told us all about it

Por Alida Cleer
Updated Abril 24, 2007

Actor Cristián de la Fuente seems thrilled about being a guest star in two episodes of the successful series Ugly Betty (ABC), starring América Ferrera. For the first time, he will play the bad guy. In a conversation with Peopleenespanol.com, the Chilean actor, who will portray Rodrigo in the April 26 and May 3 episodes, chatted with us about this experience and his plans for the year.

How did your participation in this series come about?
Everybody wants to be part of it, and I'm really happy about it, that so many actors auditioned and in the end, it was down to me. I think I did a good job and that people are going to like it.

Did the character catch your attention for any particular reason?
I had never been the villain. I've always played the nice guy, so being the villain, in a way, and looking like a nice guy, and for there to be a switch at the end, after it is discovered that my character's intentions were different, is actually very appealing.

Did someone inspire you in your role as Rodrigo?
The thing is that my character is from Brazil and I have a friend whose name happens to be the same, and he lived in that country for many years, and I asked him to help me with the language, because the character speaks in Portuguese several times. I also kept in mind that Brazilians are very extroverted and stress things a lot when they talk and gesture, so I thought it was important to give it a different touch.

Do you think the character will be successful and that you'll stay in the series after all?
I don't know if he'll be a character in the series, but, why not?… Anything can happen in the world of television. You never know how the public will react to the character, and if he catches on, he may come back. It's happened to me before. I remember that I did Hidden Hills for only one episode and I ended up doing 8. In CSI: Miami, I started out doing one episode and ended up doing 7.

In what other projects are you working?
There's a chance that by mid-year I'll take part in a TV series called Play Inside, which is a pilot I did last year. On the other hand, I'm going to work with Chilean director Raúl Ruiz in a film that we will do in Europe with Peter O'Toole and John Malkovich, and it will be called Love and Virtue. Thank God it will be a fairly busy year for me.

Will you have time to do Spanish-language novelas again?
It's an alternative I always leave open. I think that the Hispanic market is as important as or more important than the American market. Nowadays, we see that many productions and TV studios – in addition to production companies– are focusing on the Hispanic market, and it's something that I'd be willing to do. It's just a matter of finding the right project that fits my schedule, and if that is the case, I'd obviously be willing to do it.