JACQUELINE PIÑOL The multilingual Latinx actress talks TV, film, and videogames By Alex A. Kecskes
Hailing from Queens, New York, multilingual Latinx actress and video game veteran, Jacqueline Piñol is known for her role as robbery-homicide detective Julie Espinosa on the Emmy-nominated series Bosch. Piñol moved to Los Angeles at a young age and was soon busy doing commercials while attending Beverly Hills High School. She landed her first television role as Ricky Martin’s younger sister on General Hospital. After attending Loyola Marymount University, she secured major recurring roles in television. These include Dr. Sofia Amaral in the sci-fi series Quantum Break, Rikki Sandoval in crime drama CSI:NY, Olivia Solano in the Latino-family drama Resurrection Blvd., and as officer Delilah Sandoval in the family-police drama Lincoln Heights. In addition to her on-camera work, Piñol has excelled as a voiceover actress in feature films such as Bride Wars and some of the most popular video games including Transformers: The Game, Uncharted 3, and Quantum Break. Bordertown fans know her as the voice of Pepito Gonzalez. And anyone who’s ever played Spider-Man: Miles Morales will recognize her voice as Rio Morales. 36 • HOLLYWOOD MONTHLY
Thank you for taking the time for this interview. What were some of the challenges you faced when you first started your acting career? Jacqueline Piñol: I grew up in LA and I was in high school and early college when I started. I wasn’t so much star-struck; it was more, ‘I need to do my job and look for opportunities.’ Back then, there weren’t that many roles for Latin Americans and I was trying to be accepted as a Latina actor. You’re judged based on your look and that’s something we have to accept as actors. Our appearance has a lot to do with what we portray, how we portray them, and when. Ethnicity was not part of the roles I played. They were just generic. And there was a part of me that felt I couldn’t be authentic. So that was a challenge I had to accept as a young girl. Video games are becoming increasingly realistic. Can you go into why you like doing voice-overs in games like Spider-Man? Piñol: I started doing voice-overs a few years ago when video games turned to motion capture. My agents began sending me scripts for on-camera roles, not just voice-overs. I’d audition as I would for a TV on-camera role, even though they just wanted to hear my voice and get a sense of me as a character. By then, I was already a trained actor on camera.