Q&A: Star of Mayans M.C. Edward James Olmos on His Favorite Memories Working with the Cast, the Popularity of the Hit FX Series, and His Advice for Today’s Youth  

“MAYANS M.C.” -- Season 4 -- Pictured (L-R): Edward James Olmos as Felipe Reyes. CR: Estevan Oriol/FX

It’s in the darkest moments when the cracks allow the inner light to come out.  

Edward James Olmos
Mayans M.C. Season 4, FX

Edward James Olmos, the legendary actor from the award-winning 1988 drama Stand and Deliver and Miami Vice, returns as EZ’s father Felipe Reyes in Season 4 of Mayans M.C., which premiered April 19th, 2022, on FX.

Mayans M.C. Season 3 Recap

The last season ends on a cliffhanger with EZ planning to run away with Gaby (Sulem Calderon) and leave the brotherhood for good. But fearing for her safety, Reyes meddles in his son’s affairs and convinces Gaby to save herself and leave EZ behind.  

Meanwhile, in a shocking twist, not only is Canche (Jimmy Gonzales) still alive, but he gets revenge on his attempted assassins by shooting and killing Ibarra (Mike Beltran). The big questions for Season 4: Who will be dethroned and take over the business? And will EZ have another chance to be with Gaby?  

Dwell on the dead for too long, they’ll take you with them.

Edward James Olmos as Felipe Reyes in Mayans M.C.

Luckily for Edward James Olmos, he only plays the father of motorcycle gang members. In real life, he keeps things wholesome and low-key as the devoted grandfather of five girls. With five decades of Oscar, Tony, Emmy, and Golden Globe awards, the 75-year-old continues to forge ahead as a Hollywood legend while also working hard to stare death in the face and achieve longevity.  

The most important goal I have is to live to be 120 years old. And if I don’t get there I’m going to die trying.  

Edward James Olmos, 2021 interview with AARP
“MAYANS M.C.” — Season 4 — Pictured (L-R): Edward James Olmos as Felipe Reyes. CR: Estevan Oriol/FX

Although he never joined a motorcycle gang, Olmos is no stranger to living a rebellious life. In high school, he upset his father when he quit his pursuit of becoming a pro baseball player and joined a rock band. Never giving up on his dreams, he discovered his love of acting at East Los Angeles College and after appearing in several small productions, got his big break as the narrator El Pachuco in the hit Broadway play Zoot Suit, which was adapted into a film in 1981.  

Before starring as Felipe Reyes in the Sons of Anarchy spinoff Mayans M.C., Olmos nailed the strong, silent persona as police lieutenant Martin Castillo in Miami Vice. After conquering early 80s TV with co-star Don Johnson, he took on Hollywood when he starred in the hit 1988 drama Stand and Deliver. For his critically-acclaimed portrayal of real-life math teacher Jaime Escalante, he made history as the first American-born Hispanic to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor.  

What is it about Mayans M.C. that you think resonates with the audience? 

Edward James Olmos: The complexity of the characters.  

What was the most memorable behind-the-scenes moment with you and the cast? 

Edward James Olmos: When we finished our first season and the cast all cheered.

As the tough-love patriarch of the Mayans M.C. series on FX, there seems to be a battle of generations between your character Felipe Reyes and his son Ezekiel (JD Pardo). What advice do you have for today’s youth? 

Edward James Olmos: The key to understanding oneself is to discipline yourself to do the things you love when you don’t feel like doing them.  

Were you surprised at how popular the show has become? 

Edward James Olmos: Yes, in many ways. But the main one was hoping people would give it a chance. 

Watch Mayans M.C. Season 4 on FX, Tuesdays 10pm/9c, and on-demand, now available with a Vidgo subscription.  

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