August 4, 1939|
San Juan, Puerto Rico
January 1, 2006|
Mexico City, Mexico
Mapita Cortés (August 4, 1939 - January 1, 2006 born Maria del Pilar Mercado Cordero in 1939 in San Juan, Puerto Rico – died in Mexico City), was a Puerto Rican actress of telenovelas and the cinema of Mexico. She is the mother of Mexican actor Luis Gatica, the wife of Lucho Gatica, the niece of Puerto Rican actress Mapy Cortés, and the niece in law of Mexican actor Fernando Cortés. Mapita Cortés is also the cousin of famous Paquito Cordero, two years her junior.
Mapita Cortés demonstrated desire to become an actress since she was a child. As she and her cousin grew, her cousin became a known personality in Puerto Rico. Mapita Cortés, however, tried her luck in Mexico, since her aunt had adopted her and was a celebrity there. Mapita Cortés took her last name from her uncle and aunt.
Cortés became a sensation in the Mexican film industry during the 1950s, when she appeared in 1958's Misterios de ultratumba ("Mysteries of the Afterlife"). This movie became a contemporary Mexican classic.
Cortés then starred or played important roles in a number of films, following her uncle and aunt's footsteps by becoming a celebrity on her own in Mexico. She decided to establish herself in the North American country permanently after enjoying success there.
While she was doing films, another celebrity, singer Lucho Gatica, fell in love with her and the two began a romance that would lead to a marriage. Together with Gatica, Mapita Cortés procreated a son, Luis Gatica (born in 1961), who would himself also become a celebrity as a telenovela actor and rock music singer during the 1980s.
After marrying Lucho Gatica, Mapita Cortés semi-retired from the world of show business, becoming a housewife instead and attending to her son. But she returned to activity sporadically, becoming what is known as a character actress in some of Mexico's most famous telenovelas. In 1989, she participated alongside Verónica Castro in Televisa's Mi pequeña Soledad, which became a major hit across Mexico, the United States and even Europe, giving Mapita Cortés a degree of celebrity in countries like Russia and others. Mapita Cortés also had the opportunity to work alongside Mariana Levy, who died in 2005.
- Vacaciones en Acapulco (1961)
- Poker de reinas (1960)
- Dormitorio para señoritas (1960)
- Variedades de medianoche (1960)
- Escuela de verano (1959)
- Misterios de ultratumba (1959) as Patricia Aldama
- Señoritas (1959)
- La edad de la tentación (1959)
- Tres lecciones de amor (1959)
- A Thousand and One Nights (1958)
- Los tres vivales (1958)
- Mi pequeña Soledad (1990) as Blanquita
- Marionetas (1986)
- Yo no pedí vivir (1977)
- Pensión de mujeres (1960)
- Mexican stars page at the University of Maryland, College Park
- Mapita Cortés at the Internet Movie Database
- (Spanish) Fallece Mapy Cortés, madre de Luis Gatica ("Mapy Cortés dies, the mother of Luis Gatica"), article on El Universal