Actor John Leguizamo today became Colombia’s honorary ambassador for his service in promoting the country’s name.
The Bogota born actor received his heart-shaped sculpture in a ceremony in New York as part of the ‘Discover Colombia Through Your Heart” promotion campaign which seeks to improve the image of the country. Leguizamo, the star of such blockbusters as ‘Romeo + Juliet’ and ‘Moulin Rouge’ grew up in Queens, New York.
The sculpture was given to Leguizamo by Maria Claudia Lacoutre, the general manager of the campaign in Colombia.
The actor was reported saying that “to be an ambassador is a big responsibility but Colombia is stunning country … and we want to offer it to the world to enjoy”. Leguizamo added that he considered it “ludicrous” that Colombia is still branded with so many out-dated, negative labels.
Entertainment website Vive.in reported that Lacoutre said “this is not simply a prize but also recognition of the work that John has put into spreading good news about Colombia”. Lacoutre added that several prominent members of Colombian society were at the ceremony which was held in New York’s Grand Central Station.
Leguizamo mentioned other eminent Colombians to have contributed to improving the image of the country – among them singers Shakira and Juanes, racing-car driver Juan Pablo Montoya and sculptor Botero.
In November Leguizamo’s new film ‘The Ministers’ hits the big screen and in January the actor will begin shooting in New York for a film about his own life.