Andy Garcia has penned a moving tribute to his friend, the actor Julio Oscar Mechoso, who passed away on Saturday (25Nov17).
The Cuban American actor, who made his film debut alongside Andy, 61, in the 1983 Dominican drama Guaguasi and also starred alongside his fellow Cuban American in police thriller Internal Affairs, died at the age of 62 after suffering a heart attack.
In a Miami Herald article Andy praised his friend’s acting talent, which won him roles in films including Bad Boys, Blue Streak, and Jurassic Park III.
“I always wanted Julio with me in any work that I was doing. Because Julio always elevated the film,” the Ocean’s Eleven star wrote. “Working with him was for me an effortless privilege. We got off on each other, we laughed and we cried together. He was an actor’s actor. We all knew what he was capable of delivering and it was always quite extraordinary.”
Andy and Julio met in college, and the pair shared a love of acting and music and both were fans of the Miami Dolphins American football team.
In an emotional conclusion to his tribute, the grieving actor added, “We learned together our craft. I am proud to say that together we elevated it to an art form. We shared family, friends, Dolphins, food, drink and music, always with our families by our side.
“I will miss you, my brother. You left us an incredible and inspirational body of work. I will carry on, as you would like me to. As it is our duty. With you always by my side. Cherishing the work, and honoring your spirit in my work. That is my promise to you.”
Another star who paid tribute to the late actor was Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. actor Gabriel Luna, as Julio played his father in the 2014 TV series Matador. In a post on Instagram Gabriel called the veteran star an “artist supreme” and added, “I loved this man.”
In addition to his film work, Julio also had TV roles in Miami Vice, Seinfeld and Nip/Tuck.
He is survived by his wife Linda, and his three children, Melinda, JJ and CJ.