Cameron Diaz is a now-retired model, author, activist, producer, and actress, appearing in many comedies and dramas throughout her career. With a name like “Diaz,” it’s natural to wonder if she could have Spanish heritage.
Cameron Diaz’s father, Emilio Diaz, is Cuban-American, and her mother, Billie Diaz, is of Italian, Native American, and German descent. Her father’s family is Cuban, meaning that Diaz is of Spanish descent, because her ancestors originally moved to Cuba from Spain.
Read on to find out more about the retired superstar’s background and the beginning of her career.
Diaz’s Cuban Heritage
Diaz’s ancestors moved from Spain to Cuba very early on. Many years later, her father’s family emigrated from Cuba to Florida many generations before her father was born, and worked as cigar rollers in Ybor City.
Diaz grew up with her father’s Cuban heritage, including the culture, the food, and the language, though she can’t speak Spanish. While she doesn’t talk about being Spanish a lot, whenever she does, she sounds very proud to be Cuban and thankful for her culture and upbringing.
Diaz is also partially Native American, Italian, and German, which comes from her mother’s side.
Watch the YouTube video below to see Diaz talk about her Spanish heritage in an interview with Jack Rico.
Diaz’s Acting Career
While she’s now known for her many roles in various movies over the years, Diaz began her career as a model when she was 16 years old. The gig took her worldwide, to places like Morocco, Australia, and Japan.
At 21 years old, Diaz’s first role ended up being opposite Jim Carrey in The Mask, where she was eventually cast as the film’s leading lady. After the film’s success, everyone was convinced of her acting potential, and she became a highly sought after star.
Following The Mask, Diaz was in hit movies like My Best Friend’s Wedding as Kimmy Wallace, There’s Something About Mary as Mary Jensen, and Charlie’s Angels as Natalie Cook. More recently, she was in Knight and Day with Tom Cruise, Gambit, and The Other Woman.
Diaz’s career spanned twenty years and over 40 movies before she announced her retirement from acting.
Many fans were upset at Diaz’s announcement of her retirement from acting, posting reactions like this one to show their unhappiness. The posts haven’t worked yet, though–much to her fans’ dismay, the star hasn’t been in a movie since 2014.
The last project she took on was Will Gluck’s adaptation of Annie, where she played Colleen Hannigan, the cruel and always drinking woman who runs the foster home that Annie and the other girls stay in.
The three were talking about reuniting for a sequel to their movie from 2002, when Diaz said, “Maybe I should, you know, I mean, I’m down. I’m literally doing nothing… I’m semi-retired, too, and I am actually retired, so I would love to see you ladies.”
The interview ends with both Applegate and Diaz saying that they’d come out of retirement if they did decide to make a sequel, since Blair isn’t retired. While this may be a ray of hope for Diaz fans everywhere, there’s only been talk about the alleged sequel and no push to make it.