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A Spanish star shines in Tinseltown

October 18, 2005
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Hollywood Boulevard experienced a heady dose of Latin passion on Tuesday when Spanish actor Antonio Banderas became the 2,294th person to receive a star on its legendary Walk of Fame. The 45-year-old heart-throb, who was accompanied by his wife Melanie Griffith, got down on his hands and knees, passing his fingers over the bronze plaque, before reminiscing warmly about his early days in Tinseltown. "It is an honour and privilege, thinking that I arrived to this country and this city 16 years ago with practically no money in my pocket," he said. "A lot has happened since then."

Originally hailing from a modest home in the southern city of Malaga, Antonio has become one of the silver screen's biggest stars. It was the Tom Hanks drama Philadelphia that first brought him to the attention of the world, while his subsequent roles in films like Desperado, Evita and Spy Kids have confirmed his box office appeal.

The hunky performer was in his element on Tuesday as he received the congratulations of not one, but two, blonde bombshells. Basic Instinct star Sharon Stone went along to the unveiling ceremony, joining Melanie and their daughter Stella in applauding the performer.

Antonio is a family man at heart, though, and there was only one name that sprang to mind as he thought back to his first days in LA, when he would come home to his hotel room and gaze out the window at a billboard. "I could see the face of a beautiful woman, blonde, pensive, with the New York skyline behind her," he recalled. "On the billboard was written, 'Melanie Griffith, Working Girl.'"

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Photo: ©
Antonio was joined by his wife Melanie and daughter Stella, along with stepdaughter Dakota, at the unveiling ceremony
Photo: ©
The Spanish hunk revelling in his stardom

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