To most audiences, Duncan Renaldo will always be identified as film and TVs The Cisco Kid. However, this role occurred late in his career, which consisted of much more than just this western character.
To most audiences, Duncan Renaldo will always be identified as film and TVs The Cisco Kid. However, this role occurred late in his career, which consisted of much more than just this western character. Not much is known about Renaldos early life. In fact, his date and place of birth is still questioned. The usual given birth date is April 23, 1904. His birthplace has been generally stated as Spain--he has said that his first memories as a child were in Spain--although Romania and even New Jersey have been mentioned as well. An orphan, he never knew his actual parents and was never able to ascertain the exact date and place of his birth. He was raised and educated in various European countries and arrived in the US in the early 1920s as a stoker on a Brazilian coal ship. Entering the country on a 90-day seamans permit, he stayed when his ship caught fire at the dock and burned to the waterline. A paltry existence as a portrait painter forced him to seek other work, and he somehow found his way into films as a producer of short features, which in turn led to on-camera work as an actor with MGM in 1928. The studio capitalized on his dashing Hispanic looks and initially typed him as a Latin lover, but it didnt last long. In the early 1930s his career was interrupted when he was arrested and faced deportation due to his illegal immigrant status.