Michael Peña is hoping his new movie Fury will help film fans better understand the Latino effort in World War Two because he is shocked and appalled by the fact that Mexican and Puerto Rican soldiers have become the forgotten heroes of the conflict.
Peña attempted to research the role Latinos played in World War Two after landing the role of Trini ‘Gordo’ Garcia in the Brad Pitt film – and was stunned to realize there’s so little written about the Hispanic heroes.
He tells WENN, “It was harder than I thought it would be. There were not a lot of newspaper clippings or anything in Wikipedia, which was shocking because there were, like, half a million Latinos that actually fought in World War Two.”
Writer/director David Ayer adds, “It’s a little bit sad that Latinos made a huge contribution to the war effort in World War Two – and not just in uniform; between half a million served and there’s no records but on the homefront as the white boys went to fight they had to fill these jobs in the factories.
“As I looked at the period photographs of these tank crews you’d start to see more and more Latinos. Unfortunately in these prior films they haven’t shown that aspect or that diversity.”