His performance in “The Cleaner” earned Benjamin earned a nomination for Best Actor in a Drama for the 2009 ALMA (American Latino Media Arts) Awards. The show will be hosted by Eva Longoria Parker and George Lopez. It will tape September 17 at the Royce Hall Auditorium at UCLA and will air Friday, September 18 (8:00 to 10:00 p.m., ET/PT), on the ABC Television Network.
NCLR ALMA Awards Even Bigger For 2009
ALMA Awards 2009 – Show
Moreover, Benjamin is listed among the show presenters.
ALMA Awards 2009 – Presenters/Performers
I thought I could share an interview with Esteban Powell (Monsters and Critics, August 14, 2009) and one with Warren Boyd (Progressive Pulse Blog, August 11, 2009).
A&E hit series ‘The Cleaner;’ A chat with Esteban Powell
Warren Boyd: The Man Behind ‘The Cleaner’
An Ordinary Man
William tackles the substance abuse problems of a surgeon (Dr. Jake Slovak) with a God complex. The hospital administrator approaches William after receiving an anonymous letter accusing a doctor and some of the nurses of using drugs. When a nurse named Carey passes out during a surgery, William brings her in for treatment. It turns out, Carey is dating the surgeon with the drug problem and she is banking on him marrying her and becoming the father-figure to her young son. Melissa assists William by babysitting Carey’s son while Carey undergoes treatment and she helps William get to the bottom of Carey’s real addiction – she is addicted to being in love.
The Turtle and the Butterfly
An upscale woman named Gail seeks William’s help in retrieving her drug addicted son from jail in the Inland Empire. Swenton helps get Gail’s son, Travis, released from jail, but they soon discover Travis is a long way from being ready to change his life. While trying to bring Travis back to Los Angeles with them, they meet a 13-year old boy who is running drugs for a powerful dealer. The boy weighs on William’s conscience and William must decide if there is a way to save him, or if their trip to the Inland Empire is a total wash.
What struck me in An Ordinary Man was the moral/ethical dilemmas that arise. I didn’t feel much sympathy for the arrogant heart surgeon, but the character had me wonder how far we are willing to go to do extraordinary things (in spite of their negative effects on his body in the long-term, drugs allowed Dr. Slovak to work longer hours and treat more patients) and to put up with the downsides of that same extraordinary things (in his single day in recovery, Dr. Slovak tells William about nightmares he has about the people who had to die to allow him to transplant their heart to his patients and thus he tried to sleep as little as possible) and how much we are willing to forgive to someone who does extraordinary things like saving other people’s life. I also started wondering how a hospital came to be so dependent on a single doctor for its reputation, to be honest. On the “bright” side of things, though William and his team fail their intervention with the doctor, they manage to give nurse Carey the strength to go along with her purpose to live a normal life (which had her send an anonymous letter to report a doctor taking “speed”) and put her health and her son before her love for the man who had her hooked on drugs.
Compelling and heartbreaking, The Turtle and the Butterflyis a great episode. William is hired to help Travis, who was busted when his meth lab explodes in Inland Empire, CA, a place/people Swenton knows well. Here we meet Riley the tyrant dealer who claims ownership of Travis. Enter Miles. The kid who tells us the story of papa turtle who was carrying his tear (the only source of water) to his babies, when a butterfly takes the tear. As it turns out the story represents his life and the roles of the people in it, Travis = turtle, himself = baby, Riley and/or William = butterfly depending on your take. Travis gives himself in exchange for Miles. Honestly, I cried at the end. Those boys really played those parts. It tore me up what Travis did for Miles. And William walking away like that. The mother. The poignant though brief appearance of PK helping William overcoming his doubts. Everyone was great. It is a pity that you can’t win them all…
Today, Tuesday, August 25, 2009, catch an all new episode of “The Cleaner” on A&E at 10 PM ET/PT.
In the episode entitled “Cinderella,” while William watches his daughter Lula rehearse for an important ballet recital, he begins to suspect that the star ballerina, whom Lula idolizes, is addicted to drugs. William wrestles with his own issues of being an overprotective father and must find a way to help the ballerina with her problems while not damaging his relationship with Lula.
Last Saturday, the Limelight Pictures Blog published a couple of candid pictures of Benjamin.
EXCL!- Benjamin Bratt sighting
The USTA announced a series of expanded fan enhancements and programming for the 2009 US Open. I’m sure his fans will be happy to learn that Benjamin will host a tribute to former U.S. National Champion Pancho Gonzalez on Saturday, September 5, 2009.
“Pancho Gonzalez Tribute: On Saturday night, September 5, special guests including actor Benjamin Bratt will host a tribute to former U.S. National Champion Pancho Gonzalez on-court in Arthur Ashe Stadium. The tribute will celebrate Gonzalez on the 60th anniversary of his second consecutive victory at the U.S. Championships and will include a video presentation highlighting Gonzalez’ life and tennis career. Gonzalez family members, as well as a number of former players and Hispanic community leaders, will be in attendance.”
The US Open 2009 – News by Day (August 20, 2009)
Benjamin and his wife, Talisa, attended the 24th Annual Imagen Awards – honoring positive portrayals of Latinos and Latino culture in entertainment – on Friday, August 21, 2009, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA.
Photos can be found at WireImage
24th Annual Imagen Awards
and Getty Images
CA: 24th Annual IMAGEN Awards
The National Museum of the American Indian organized a screening of “La Mission” at the Rasmuson Theater in Washington DC. The event is set for October 9, 2009, at 7 pm. Hopefully,someone anyone living in Washington DC or visiting it around that day can go and see the film.
“Dinner and a Movie: La MISSION
Friday, October 9, 2009, 7 p.m.
The museum’s Zagat-rated Mitsitam Native Foods Cafe will offer a full menu and Latin-inspired tapas from 5 to 6:30 p.m.
La MISSION starring Benjamin Bratt (2009, 117 min.)
Set in the colorful San Francisco district that bears its name, La MISSION is a story of redemption imbued with the curative power of Aztec tradition. Respected as the baddest Chicano on the block, Che (Benjamin Bratt) is a reformed inmate and recovering alcoholic who lives for his beloved son Jesse, his lifelong friends, and his passion for lowrider cars. His macho world is crushed when he discovers that Jesse has been living a secret life. A relationship with his neighbor Lena challenges Che to reconcile his violent past and the choices he’s made. La MISSION is a haunting story of healing and transformation. Moderated discussion with filmmakers Peter and Benjamin Bratt follows the screening.
Admission for the screening is free, but reservations are required. Reservation does not ensure a seat; seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. Online registration begins September 15, 2009.”
National Museum of the American Indian – Events
The People Speak – a documentary inspired by Howard Zinn’s book, A People’s History of the United States and from the book he co-authored with Anthony Arnove, Voices of a People’s History, documenting the voices of resistance (to injustice, to war) in U.S. history that are excluded from the orthodox histories – will make it to the History Channel later this year.
The People Speak
Benjamin Bratt is in the cast, as you may have guessed from his participation in the live performance of Voices of a People’s History at Sundance Film Festival 2009 last January.
The People Speak – Cast
Today, Tuesday, August 18, 2009, catch an all new episode of “The Cleaner” on A&E at 10 PM ET/PT.
In the episode entitled “Path of Least Resistance,” a self-help guru’s drug addicted son disappears right before the release of her second book, so she turns to William for help. William and his team search for her son and once William finds the estranged young man, he learns her son struggles with gender dysphoria. William tries to get him to confront both his addiction issues and his gender dysphoria honestly and without pressure from his ambitious mother.