PBS Kicks Off Hispanic Heritage Month With ‘Raúl Juliá: The World’s a Stage’ (VIDEO)

6356-Merel _ Fallsburg with Family _ 01C - 1982
Courtesy of Family Collection

The first documentary on legendary and influential Puerto Rican actor Raúl Juliá will premiere on PBS this September in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month.

THIRTEEN’s American Masters and Latino Public Broadcasting’s VOCES are behind Raúl Juliá: The World’s a Stage, and TV Insider has an exclusive first look at the trailer.

The documentary from award-winning director Ben DeJesus is a revealing portrait of the charismatic, groundbreaking actor’s journey from his native Puerto Rico to 1960s New York City and prominence on Broadway and in Hollywood. His career was tragically cut short by his untimely death in 1994 when he was 54.

It is told in his own voice through archival interviews and by those who knew him best and follows his personal and professional life. It also showcases performances from his collaboration with Joseph Papp’s The Public Theater to his cinematic career. His best-known roles include Titus Andronicus, Two Gentlemen of Verona, The Taming of the Shrew, the Broadway musical Nine, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Moon Over Parador, Romero, Presumed Innocent, and The Addams Family.

The documentary features new interviews with Rita Moreno, Edward James Olmos, John Leguizamo, Anjelica Huston, Benicio Del Toro, Jimmy Smits, Esai Morales, James Earl Jones, Andy Garcia, and more.

It will also show his personal life with never-before-seen family photos and home videos, and his wife Merel, sons, relatives, and friends will share insights about him away from the spotlight.

(Courtesy of Family Collection)

Juliá helped pave the way for Latino actors today with his engaging personality, accent, and timeless work. He was also an advocate of social causes, including ending hunger.

Watch the trailer below to see how Juliá inspired others and why success was inevitable for him.

American Masters — Raúl Juliá: The World’s a Stage, Documentary Premiere, Friday, September 13, 9/8c, PBS (check local listings)