Vin Diesel is one of the most famous and successful actors in the entire world. He is best known for playing Dominic Toretto in the “Fast & Furious” franchise.
He is also quite famous on social media because of the memes. There are lots of memes that include his photo which is quite popular nowadays. Even though he is immensely popular and rich not much is known about his ethnicity. So, in this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about his ethnicity and how he describes himself as.
What is his ethnicity?
To this day his ethnicity remains to be a mystery. He was born on 18th July 1967 in Alameda County, California. His mother’s name is Sherleen Vincent (née Sinclair) and she is an astrologer. He grew up in New York City with his maternal twin brother, Paul.
His mother is of Scottish, German, and English descent. However, his biological father is still unknown and he hasn’t met him yet. He was adopted by an African-American father named Irving H. Vincent. His father is is an instructor and theatre manager.
Even though his ethnicity was reported to be part African-American, we are still unsure of his father’s complete ethnicity.
He has connections to many different cultures
Not only are the fans curious o know about his ethnicity but he is also curious to know about his ethnicity.
Regarding his curiosity, he once said, “I don’t know what I am. I’m a combination of many things. I never knew my biological father. I’ve always had less information than I would have liked to have had. All I know from my mother is that I have connections to many different cultures.”
He had once described himself as a person of color and racially ambiguous. Even though Vincent is not his biological father, he has credited his father for his upbringing and motivation to join the entertainment industry. He has said that the man who raised him is black.
“Culturally he made me who I am. He was a theatre director so he also guided me artistically.”, he added.
How did his mixed heritage affect his career?
Vin Diesel has made a short film titled “Multi-Facial” in 1995. He had sometimes felt that his mixed heritage has held him back in his career in the film industry. So, he created this short film to show his ambiguous ethnicity and how it affected his career.
You can watch the short film above. In the short film, he is seen portraying the role of a talented actor who is struggling to land a role because casting agents and producers don’t know how to place him in their productions. The short film also highlights the stereotypical castings in the film industry.
In the short film, we can see that he portrays the character of a struggling but talented actor who can act Italian but he doesn’t look Italian enough, he can act Latino but can’t speak Spanish, he can rap but he’s too light-skinned to play a black man.
Why did he change his name?
As you may already know Vin Diesel’s real name is Mark Sinclair. He used to work as a bouncer in New York as he tried to establish himself as an actor. He was quite muscular, tall, and had a deep voice. Vin was suited for the job but he couldn’t cut it as a bouncer, at least in his mind.
He decided to adopt Vin from his parent’s last name, Vincent. If you are wondering about his last name then it came from his friends due to t his seemingly boundless energy. So, that’s how we got to know him as Vin Diesel instead of Mark Sinclair.
The perfect multiracial and multicultural hero
The short film “Multi-Facial’ that he created and starred in 1995 caught the attention of Steven Spielberg. Steven recruited him for a supporting in his latest film at that time titled “Saving Private Ryan”. From then on Vin kept on doing bigger projects and got lots of opportunities.
Vin was finally able to convert his weakness into his strength. Because of his racial ambiguity, everybody started to relate to him. The director of “The Fast and the Furious”, Rob Cohen said, “You don’t know what he is, and it doesn’t even matter, because he’s everybody. Everybody looks at Vin and goes, ‘I see myself.”
In 2013 he had an interview with ABC News where he told, “I guess I’ve always looked past the exterior and the ambiguity that my existence represents. When I was in my mother’s stomach, it was still illegal in parts of America for people of color and white people to procreate.”
The actor hasn’t spoken much about his mixed ethnicity in these recent years. But by all means, he isn’t phased a single bit by his multi-ethnic heritage.
Also, an academic Anne Cremieuxv has acclaimed him in her article as, “the first major movie star to […] have a racially ambiguous physique.” In that article, she has summarized him as the perfect multiracial and multicultural hero. She has also claimed that he can be read as the latest specimen of a long line of actors cultivating racially ambiguous personas, whether their skin was Black or White, from Sidney Poitier and Elvis Presley to Will Smith and Bruce Willis.