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Gilbert Roland (born Luis Antonio Dámaso de Alonso, December 11, 1905 – May 15, 1994) was a Mexican-born American film and television actor whose career spanned seven decades from the 1920s until the 1980s. He was twice nominated for the Golden Globe Award in 1952 and 1964, and inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960.
Roland was born in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, Mexico. When Pancho Villa took control of their town, Roland and his family fled to the United States. He lived in Texas until at age 14 he hopped on a freight train and went to Hollywood. He chose his screen name by combining the names of his favorite actors, John Gilbert and Ruth Roland. He was often cast in the stereotypical Latin lover role.
Roland's first film contract was with Paramount. His first major role was in the collegiate comedy The Plastic Age (1925) together with Clara Bow, to whom he became engaged. In 1926, he played Armand in Camille opposite Norma Talmadge, with whom he was romantically involved, and they starred together in several productions. With the advent of sound films, Roland frequently appeared in Spanish language adaptations of American films, in romantic lead roles. Roland served in the United States Army Air Corps during World War II.
Beginning in the 1940s, critics began to take notice of his acting and he was praised for his supporting roles in John Huston's We Were Strangers (1949), The Bad and the Beautiful (1952), Thunder Bay (1953), and Cheyenne Autumn (1964). He also appeared in a series of films in the mid-1940s as the popular character "The Cisco Kid". He played Hugo, the agnostic friend of the three shepherd children in The Miracle of Our Lady of Fatima. In 1953, Roland played Greek-American sponge diver Mike Petrakis in the epic Beneath the 12-Mile Reef. His last film appearance was in the 1982 western Barbarosa.
Roland married actress Constance Bennett in 1941. They were married until 1946 and had two daughters. His second marriage, to Guillermina Cantú in 1954, lasted until his death 40 years later.
Gilbert Roland died of cancer in Beverly Hills, California in 1994, aged 88.