Over five seasons’ worth of heists, drama, and edge-of-your-seat suspense, we’ve gotten to know the characters of Money Heist inside and out – what makes Tokyo tick, the inner workings of the Professor’s meticulous mind, how many ‘A’s there are in Denver’s laugh, and so much more.
Just as the series’ popularity extended beyond the borders of Spain, the actors behind these characters have also shot to international fame when the show launched globally on Netflix. With all eyes on them, especially with the recent launch of Money Heist Part 5: Volume 1, here are some little-known facts about the cast you probably didn’t know (until now).
1. Álvaro Morte (The Professor) was on his way to become an engineer before he caught the acting bug. He is also a cancer survivor.
Morte initially pursued a degree in communications engineering, but soon abandoned the vocation and switched to dramatic arts. Upon graduating from the Escuela Superior de Arte Dramático de Córdoba (Córdoba School of Dramatic Arts) in 1999, he went on to pursue a postgraduate degree after receiving a scholarship from the University of Tampere in Finland and eventually began his acting career in 2002.
FUN FACT: The then-fledgling actor made his feature film debut in 2007’s Lola, la película (Lola: The Movie), a biopic about the late folkloric singer Lola Flores. If her last name seems familiar, that’s because she is the grandmother of his Money Heist co-star Alba Flores, who played Nairobi!
On a personal front, Morte had also revealed that he was diagnosed with a cancerous tumour in the left thigh in his thirties. Much like how his character overcame his childhood illness, the actor eventually made a full recovery.
2. Prior to joining Money Heist as the brash and impulsive Tokyo, Úrsula Corberó is mostly known for her comedic roles.
The Spanish actress started her acting career at the age of 13, appearing in teen shows and period dramas.
In the mid-2010s, she got to flex her comedic chops in comedy films ¿Quién mató a Bambi? (Who Killed Bambi?), Perdiendo el norte (Off Course), and Cómo Sobrevivir a una Despedida (How to Survive a Hen Party), all of which were well-received by critics and fans alike, hence cementing her place as one of the best comedy actresses in Spain.
She had also lent her voice to the Spanish dubs of Hollywood animated films Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, The Emoji Movie, and The Secret Life of Pets.
3. Pedro Alonso (Berlin) is a renaissance man. He can act, he can sing, he can dance, he’s published a book, and he can even draw with BOTH HANDS at the SAME TIME.
Off-screen, Alonso is a talented painter who often posts his sketches and paintings on Instagram, such as this timelapse video of a painting featuring his Money Heist co-stars Luka Peroš (Marseille), Hovik Keuchkerian (Bogotá), and Rodrigo de la Serna (Palermo). He also published a book called Libro de Filipo (Book of Philippus) under the pen name Pedro Alonso O’choro last year.
BONUS FUN FACT: He has a twin brother called Pablo!
4. Jaime Lorente (Denver) is a poet who has published his own collection of poetry.
Looks like Berlin’s not the only writer in la banda!
In 2019, Lorente published A propósito de tu boca (The purpose of your mouth), a collection of poems he had been writing since he was in high school, showcasing the author’s vision of love as well as his way of experiencing and living it.
By the way, if you’re wondering if he laughs like Denver IRL… he does not. :p
5. Enrique Arce (Arturo) studied law in university, but dropped out in his fourth year to pursue an acting career.
How did he break the news to his parents, you ask? Let’s just say, getting to that point required a strategy worthy of the Professor himself.
In an interview with regional newspaper Las Provincias, Arce revealed he told his parents that he was going to Xàbia for the weekend, but in actual fact, he took a plane thousands of kilometres away from home to attend an admission test for the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York! He secured a spot, and as luck would have it, the actor hopeful won a 2 million pesetas (about US$10,000 at the time) prize money from Valencian TV show Ellos i Elles, which allowed him to fund his studies there.
Arce added that his parents were shocked by his decision and were understandably concerned about his professional prospects, but offered their full support and have always been his biggest fans.
6. Darko Perić (Helsinki) has a degree in veterinary medicine. He also practices qigong.
In another life, we might be calling him Dr. Helsinki instead! Having fled his home country at the start of the Yugoslav wars, Perić enrolled in veterinary school in Romania and eventually graduated with honours in veterinary medicine in 2000.
7. Last but not least, we gotta talk about the immortal “cast member” that has been with the show through thick and thin – the red jumpsuit
Money Heist has no doubt cemented its place in the cultural zeitgeist; even someone who has never watched a single episode could probably recognise the iconic red jumpsuit as an iconic symbol from the show.
Worn by both the robbers and hostages, over 600 red jumpsuits were used for all five seasons of the show! And there’s a reason why the jumpsuits, despite their uniformity, always stand out – according to director Jesús Colmenar, the decision was made to tone down all the primary colours so that the red will be a constant focal point throughout the series.
Colmenar added, “This is the reason we decided all our robbers and hostages should wear a uniform, so that the red jumpsuit would become the great key visual of the series.”
All caught up on Money Heist Part 5: Volume 1 and missing the cast already? If you’re vibrating in your seat while impatiently waiting for Volume 2 to drop on 3 December, well… no one’s stopping you from re-watching the entire show again. 😉
All episodes of Money Heist are now streaming, only on Netflix!