Biographical Dictionary of Mexican Film Performers

"M" Part Two



Mateos, Héctor (1901-57): bald, moustached supporting actor in many, many films from the mid-1940s through the 1950s. Usually cast in minor parts as minor officials, doctors, party guests, etc.

May, Lyn: exotic dancer who proved herself capable of handling dramatic acting chores when necessary. Notable for (how shall we put it), a huge butt. Popular in nightclubs, and on-screen from the '70s in films like Tivoli, Perro callejero, etc.

Mayo, Gloria: blonde actress, on-screen from the '70s through the '90s (Santa vs. las lobas, Luchadores de las estrellas). Sometimes produces and writes as well.

Medel, Félix (1876-1951): stage actor who appeared in some minor roles in films of the 1940s. Father of Manuel Medel.

Medel, Manuel (1906-1997): Manuel Medel was born on 5 January 1906 in Monterrey. His father was Félix Medel, a stage performer, and his mother was Concepción Ruiz, a zarzuela singer. Manuel began appearing on the stage as a teenager, and within a few years worked his way up from the "carpas" to "variety" theatres (approximately equivalent to vaudeville). During the 1930s, Medel rivaled Mario Moreno "Cantinflas" in popularity and although the two men were never close friends, they did appear together on the stage and were teamed in three films: Así es mi tierra, Aguila o sol, and El signo de la muerte. Cantinflas became a superstar, while Medel's career followed a different path. After a few years in supporting roles, Medel played the lead in La vida inútil de Pito Pérez, a screen version of a popular novel. But Medel never developed a distinctive screen personality and, except for a role as a murderous clown in El teatro del crimen (1956), he was off-screen between 1948 and 1975 (although he continued to work on the stage). In the late '70s and early '80s he made something of a film comeback, but only as a supporting player. In March 1996, Manuel Medel was honored for his long career by ANDA, the actors' union.

Medel married Cuban actress and "vedette" Rosita Fornés in the 1940s; they had a daughter (Rosa María Medel), but later divorced. At the time of his death, the comedian was married to Alicia Bucio. Medel died of a heart attack in 1997.

Medina, Ofelia [Ofelia Medina Torres] (1950--): after studying dance, acting, and singing, the Mérida-born Medina began appearing in films in the late 1960s. She won a Diosa de Plata as Best Actress for Paraíso and is well-known for playing Frida Kahlo in Paul Leduc's film Frida--naturaleza vida (for which she won the Best Actress Ariel award). Medina, who is still active on TV and the stage, produced and wrote the film Gertrudis (aka Gertrudis Bocanegra). She also earned a Best Actress nomination for El cambio.

Mejía, Alfonso (1934--): after being chosen by Luis Buñuel for a leading role in Los olvidados (for which he received the Best Child Actor Ariel), Mejía worked steadily in Mexican films over the next decade (he attended the ANDA acting school and studied with Seki Sano, after he had made Los olvidados), winning Best Juvenile Performer nominations for Padre nuestro and El túnel seis. In his thirties, Mejía retired from acting, studied International Relations, and has worked in the field of international law since then.

Melo, Anaís de : slim, frequently-nude actress, born in Portugal, on-screen from the 1970s onward in a wide variety of genres and levels of film. Now vice-president of a public relations firm in Mexico City.

Melo, Gastón (1937--): somewhat nerdy-looking young actor of the 1970s, mostly in "serious" films such as Aquellos años (1972). Melo is also a writer, and reportedly later entered a Trappist monastery.

Méndez, Lucía [Lucía Leticia Méndez Pérez] (1951, '55 or '58--): Méndez became a model in 1972, then quickly moved into films as an actress (she also added singing to her repertoire). While her film career (mostly in the '70s) was respectable, she is best-known for her telenovela work. Formerly married to Pedro Torres, who is the father of her son, Pedro Antonio. Méndez has lived in the USA in recent years and still appears in telenovelas.

Mendoza, Amalia "La Tariacuri" (1923--): ranchera singer who had roles in some '50s and '60s films, both musical guest spots and the occasional acting role.

Mendoza, Rossy [María del Rosario Mendoza]: born in Nayarit, the busty Rossy Mendoza broke into show business as a "vedette" (a singer/dancer/showgirl), later headlining in variety theatres. She also appeared in films of the 1970s and 1980s, including Santo en Oro Negro, El sexo de los pobres, and Esos viejos raboverdes.

Mendoza, Víctor Manuel (1913 or '16?-1995): Jalisco-born leading man of the 1930s and 1940s, usually in "rural" roles. Semi-retired after the 1950s, he showed up in films from time to time until the early '90s. Best Actor Ariel for Talpa. Best Co-Starring Actor Ariel winner for Cuando lloran los valientes (1945). He also won the IMCINE award at the 1991 Arieles.

Menéndez, Ramón: burly, bearded character actor; Best Supporting Actor nomination for Cananea (1976).

Meraz, Raúl [Raúl Meraz Estrada] (1927-1996): although he can be glimpsed in a extra role as early as 1949, Meraz did not receive substantial parts until the mid-1950s. Although he did play some leads, he was often cast in secondary and supporting roles. Meraz worked in films and on TV right up until his death.

Mercado, Felicia: 1977's "Miss Mexico" (from Baja California), the blonde Mercado made her screen debut shortly afterward, and has kept busy in films and on TV since then.

Merello, Tita: Argentine actress. Winner of the Best Supporting Actress Ariel for Cinco rostros de mujer (1946), her only Mexican film role. She did make a fair number of movies in her home country.

Meriche, Julien de [real name Vladimir Lipkies Chazan] (1909-1974): Russian-born actor and choreographer. De Meriche worked as a dancer in European music halls, then moved to Argentina where he worked in cinema in the '30s. He came to Mexico and had supporting roles in many films from the 1940s until his death, often playing foreigners. De Meriche also worked as an actor and director in many stage, TV, cabaret performances. He was married to María Elena Velasco "La India María." One of their children is producer/director Iván Lipkies (who was kind enough to provide updated information for this bio of his father).

Mestre, Gloria [Gloria Carmen Mestre] (1933--): exotic-looking "classical" dancer who has worked occasionally as an actress since the 1950s. However, she is best-known internationally as a dancer.

Meyer, Alejandra: comic character actress, in films since the mid-'50s; also on TV, often as someone's nagging wife, mother-in-law, etc., notably in the "Cándido Pérez" TV series.

Meyer, Roberto (?-1974): balding, scrawny character actor who vacillated between sympathetic and unsympathetic roles from the '40s to the '60s. Also a couple of writing credits.


Updated 7 Jan 2001 by dw45@umail.umd.edu

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