Michael Peña

After a decade of struggling to make a name in independent features and with guest spots on television, actor Michael Peña finally emerged as a notable performer with his standout performance in the racially charged drama "Crash" (2005). Prior to his breakout role, Peña made the first major strides in his career with a small, but memorable turn in "Million Dollar Baby" (2004), which made Hollywood finally stand up and take notice. He went on to earn attention as a police detective struggling to reconcile his involvement with the corrupt Strike Team on the fourth season of the acclaimed cop drama "The Shield" (FX, 2002-08). But it was his understated turn in "World Trade Center" (2006) as a Port Authority officer trapped under the rubble after the September 11th terrorist attacks in New York City that turned Peña into a sought-after performer. He delivered strong supporting turns in the action thriller "Shooter" (2007), the stately courtroom thriller "The Lincoln Lawyer" (2011) and the action comedy "Tower Heist" (2011). By the time he delivered an award-worthy performance in the indie actioner "End of Watch" (2012), Peña was very much in-demand as an acclaimed actor capable of excelling in a wide variety of genres.