Carla Gugino says she was logistically 10 years too young for her role in Spy Kids

Carla Gugino reflects on her time in Spy Kids, which she loved. But she also laughs that her age made her character impossible.

carla gugino, spy kids

Carla Gugino has been able to sustain a lengthy career with a wide array of projects. From her early days, she made a mark co-starring with Pauly Shore in Son-In-Law and continued with indies such as Electra Luxx and Women in Trouble. Over her nearly forty years on screen, starting way back in an episode of Webster, Carla Gugino was able to bring an ability to play comedy, drama, sci-fi, and action with equal measure. She starred in sitcoms like when she acted opposite Michael J. Fox on Spin City. Recently, she’s been able to parlay a collaboration with Mike Flanagan on projects like The Haunting of Hill House and Bly Manor, as well as her recent turn in The Fall of the House of Usher on Netflix.

In 2001, Gugino would star as a spy mom in the Robert Rodriguez family film Spy Kids. According to Variety, Gugino reflected on the role while on BuzzFeed and said that when she took the part, she was in her late twenties, which did not logistically add up with her character. Gugino explained, “It is so funny because I was 27. It was a really beautiful kind of double-edged sword because I love that movie so much. And the whole experience was incredible, and the movies continue.” She continued,

I love Ingrid Cortes. But it was funny because I was 10 years, at least, too young for the role because I was a spy for 10 years and then somehow had children who were like 9 and 11. So it was physically totally impossible.”

Spy Kids also featured Antonio Banderas as her husband, and her children were played by Alexa PenaVega and Daryl Sabara. The movie was already in the midst of filming for the past two weeks when Gugino met with Rodriguez for the role. “He was like, ‘I feel like I’m looking for a mother for my kids.’ We were talking about it, and I had auditioned for him and he said, ‘I think if we do our job right, no one will ever question it.’ And it’s so funny like you said, nobody did. Antonio Banderas and I had worked together on a movie called Miami Rhapsody that David Frankel directed, so we also had a little bit of a history, which was really nice to come into it that way.”

Source: Variety, BuzzFeed

About the Author

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E.J. is a News Editor at JoBlo, as well as a Video Editor, Writer, and Narrator for some of the movie retrospectives on our JoBlo Originals YouTube channel, including Reel Action, Revisited and some of the Top 10 lists. He is a graduate of the film program at Missouri Western State University with concentrations in performance, writing, editing and directing.