Born in La Rioja’s small town of Albelda de Iregua in 1967, at the age of 16 he came into contact with the Teatro Pobre theatre company, an event that brought out all his talent and intuition. It was the group’s director, Fernando Gil Torner, who encouraged him to try to join Madrid’s drama school RESAD, where he soon stood out, after the closure of the Logroño School of Dramatic Art.
In order to pay for his training, he worked as an usher at the Teatro Fígaro in Madrid, and in 1991 he made his professional debut as an extra in ‘El caballero de Olmedo’, a play directed by Miguel Narros which was soon followed by ‘Dígaselo con valium’, by Valladolid-born playwright José Luis Alonso de Santos.
His film acting debut came in 1993 in ‘Rosa rosae’, by Fernando Colomo, and in the 90s he became popular for his work on television series like ‘ ¡Ay, Señor, Señor!’, ‘Periodistas’, ‘Hostal Royal Manzanares’ or’ 7 lives’, among others.
After participating in the first two installments of ‘Torrente’ and in films like ‘Washington Wolves’ or ‘Sex and Lucía’, Pedro Almodóvar offered him the role of Benigno, the devoted and selfless protagonist of ‘Talk to her’ (2002) , that would launch his career.
Since then he has worked with filmmakers such as Pablo Berger (‘Torremolinos 73’), Joaquín Oristrell (‘With George Bush on My Mind’’), Isabel Coixet (‘Yesterday Never Ends’), Manuel Martín Cuenca (‘Hard Times’), Agustín Díaz Yanes (‘Captain Alatriste’), Cesc Gay (‘The People Upstairs’), José Luis Cuerda (‘The Blind Sunflowers’), Nacho G. Velilla (‘Chef’s Special’), Fernando Trueba (‘My Father’), Borja Cobeaga (‘Bomb Scared’) or Gracia Querejeta (‘Wave of Crimes’), in addition to participating in Paolo Sorrentino’s series ‘The Young Pope’ and ‘The New Pope’.
He has received two Goya awards for Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor respectively for his work in David Trueba’s ‘Living is Easy with Eyes Closed’ and Cesc Gay’s ‘Truman’, as well as some other two Silver Biznagas at the Málaga Festival, the Silver Shell for Best Actor at the San Sebastián Festival, two Ondas awards and many other distinctions.