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La actriz Anya Taylor Joy y Carlo Felice en la popular miniserie de Netflix. Photo: El Comercio.
Actress Anya Taylor Joy and Carlo Felice in the popular Netflix mini-series. Photo: El Comercio.

Who is Carlo Felice? The Latino actor in 'The Queen's Gambit'

In the acclaimed Netflix series, the Venezuelan plays Brazilian chess champion Octavio Marenco, who faces the protagonist in her first international chess…

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Life is like chess, there are many possible moves, but nothing good will happen unless you know how to take advantage of the gambit. 

This is what happened to actor Carlo Felice, who moved to Spain to escape the political and economic crisis in Venezuela and began studying Journalism and Dramatic Art in Madrid. Since then, he's found himself moving his pawns and bishops in the right direction.

The Latino, who defines himself as an "eccentric, educated and versatile" actor, caught his break when he became the Portuguese assistant to King Alfonso VI in the Spanish series Aguila Roja, but his great international tournament has been fought in the United States, as a member of the cast of the popular The Queen's Gambit. In the series, he shares the stage with the actress Anya Taylor Joy (The Witch, 2015), who plays a young orphan, Beth Harmon, with a prodigious ability for chess and a good rosary of addictions. 

Although Felice's role in the series is small — he plays the Brazilian chess champion Octavio Marenco, who plays Harmon in her first world tournament in Mexico City — his acting skills have not gone unnoticed, and it is only the beginning of a lot of good moves from the Venezuelan towards Hollywood stardom.

On the cultural board

Son of the well-known Venezuelan singer Filomena Napolitano, Felice, 26, has lived the culture from the cradle.

"My father used to take us to the theater a lot," the actor told EFE.

Before landing in Madrid, he trained at the Escuela de Teatro Musical de Magno Producciones in Venezuela and participated in musicals such as CLAP and Como Ariel, and the TV series Válgame Dios. 

"The truth is that working for Netflix is like every actor's dream now, so when I got the part I couldn't help but be moved by the joy. It is true that it is small, but it is enough to make me a place within this industry and with this platform," said Felice.

To prepare for casting, the Venezuelan had to learn some Portuguese, although in the Spanish series Aguila Roja (Red Eagle), he also flirted with the Luso accent. 

Now, Felice is immersed in converting one of the short films he made during the stage of his life when he lived in Berlin into a feature film, alternating food jobs with independent films. He has also recorded the pilot chapter of a new youth series in Germany that is focused on creating a space to teach drama to children.

"Basically a space where I and my friends can work for the neighborhood where we live and always in favor of culture, which we need so much now," he said.

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