Actor, athlete, and author Luis Da Silva Jr. has experienced success in nearly every field he’s stepped into. From unforgettable performances in dozens of films starring Hollywood’s elite, including John Travolta, Jodie Foster, Woody Harrelson, Kate Winslet, Casey Affleck, Adrien Brody, Sam Rockwell, and Brie Larson, to being the youngest non-professional athlete ever endorsed by Nike, being pictured on the cover of Time magazine, holding a Guinness World Record, starring in assorted NBA video games, and authoring a series of children’s books, you could say this New Jersey native has the Midas touch.
Originally from Elizabeth, New Jersey, Luis grew up playing baseball and practicing Aikido, a form of martial arts. It wasn’t until he turned 13 that he discovered his passion for basketball. At 18, Luis’ life changed forever when he walked into an open audition for a Nike commercial. He was immediately signed to represent their Freestyle ad campaign, which, at the time, was one of the most widely recognized Nike commercials. The commercial led to an endorsement deal, making Luis the youngest and first non-professional athlete to sign with Nike.
A Guinness World Record holder in various basketball-handling categories, Luis has been featured on the cover of Time magazine and in The Wall Street Journal, and has starred in several NBA-themed video games, including L.A. Rush and others produced by Midway Games.
Over the years, Luis has had the opportunity to perform with Alicia Keys, and Will Smith and Sean Combs in NBA halftime shows. When he was 26, Luis became the youngest athlete inducted into the Hall of Fame in his hometown.
After years of success in the sports world, Luis tried his hand at acting. He’s known for his role in Fast Five, playing Diogo, a Brazilian racecar champion. Additional films include The Brave One, Pride and Glory, 21 Jump Street, American Heist, and Mr. Right. His television credits include Girls, Person of Interest, Graceland, Body of Proof, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, and Power.
When he’s not in front of the camera or dribbling down court, Luis enjoys being a father to his daughter, Zoe-Aiko. His role as Dad has opened the door to the literary field—he’s now also writing children’s books. His titles include A Boy Named Boo and Zoe and Toby and the Alphabet Adventures. Both are available via online retailers.
Watch his sizzle reel here.