Benito Martinez is back on ABC’s anthology series “American Crime” tackling a new role in the third season, which is currently airing on Sunday nights at 10pm. This time he’s playing Luis Salazar, who is trafficked across the border from Mexico into the United States as he searches for his missing son. “This character doesn’t say anything unless he needs to,” Martinez told us during our recent webcam chat (watch above). “He’s all eyes, all research, all searching. He’s very curious, and heartbroken because he doesn’t know where his son is.”
Martinez’s storyline is one of several this season that explore broader issues of human trafficking, sexual exploitation, and modern slavery. What especially impressed the actor about this season’s approach was “how the story overall is able to pick many different people who have given up their freedom in one way or another for this other life, or money, or to find their kid, or for a better life — the cost of human flesh that is weighed every day.”
As audiences take in this story Martinez hopes they come away with a greater sense of empathy for the immigrants and laborers we take for granted, who live with us and around us every day. “Have a sense of compassion for your fellow man even though you don’t know him at all,” he says. “They’re no longer invisible. The person who serves your food, cleans off your table, parks your car, or watches your babies — understand that they’re fully fledged human beings.”
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