‘El Rey del Corrido’ Chalino Sánchez Getting Biopic

Lead Photo: Courtesy of Spotify.
Courtesy of Spotify.
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The long-awaited biopic about Chalino Sánchez is finally becoming a reality. And the Mexican-American actor David Castañeda, known for The Umbrella Academy, could be the one to fill the king of corrido’s boots.

A Sánchez biopic first moved forward in 2020 at the Sundance Screenwriters and Directors Labs. Jesus Celaya’s script for the project earned him the Latinx fellowship at the event. According to a report by Deadline, Celaya is also slated to direct the film, which will feature Sanchez’s music. And Celaya is known for “mixing genre with his heritage and history, allowing it all to permeate through his work.

Before Peso Pluma, Natanael Cano, and Fuerza Regida, the pioneer of Mexican corridos was Sánchez. From the late eighties to the early nineties, Sanchez’s style of music erred on the side of narcocorridos, which romanticized the lifestyle of drug traffickers. The Sinaloa native’s biggest hits included “Alma Enamorada,” “Los Chismes,” and “Nieves de Enero.” In January 1992, Sanchez survived a shooting during his concert in Coachella, CA. The following May, he was murdered after a concert in Culiacán, Sinaloa. His last concert was recorded, and Sánchez received what appeared to be a note with a death threat that he crumpled up.

Though not confirmed yet, David Castañeda is closing in on the role of Sánchez for the upcoming biopic and has been circling it for months. Castañeda was born in L.A., but he grew up in Sinaloa like Sánchez. After appearing in Jane the Virgin, he landed his breakout role as Diego Hargreeves in the hit Netflix series The Umbrella Academy. Its final season premieres on August 8, 2024. Production on the movie will reportedly be underway later this year.

The murder of Chalino Sánchez remains unsolved, though there are claims that it could’ve been related to a Mexican cartel or personal vendetta. Earlier this month, Peso Pluma paid homage to him during his performance at the Coachella music festival. He also highlighted other música mexicana icons like Jenni Rivera, Joan Sebastián, Ramón Ayala, Valentín Elizalde, and Ariel Camacho.