As William Shakespeare once wrote, “What’s in a name?”
Legendary actor Martin Sheen changed his birth name from “Ramon Estévez” to his now famous stage name for his Hollywood career.
However, the 81-year-old now wishes he had never fixed his nickname for his acting profession.
“It’s one of my regrets,” the ‘West Wing’ star recently told Closer Weekly. “I never officially changed my name. It’s still Ramon Estévez on my birth certificate. It’s on my marriage license, my passport, my driver’s license.
“Sometimes you get convinced when you don’t have enough insight or even enough courage to stand up for what you believe in, and you pay for it later. But, of course, I only speak for myself,” Sheen added.
The Ohio native also revealed that his father tried to talk him out of getting into show business. “You couldn’t blame him. Both of my parents were immigrants. My father was Spanish and my mother Irish,” Sheen said.
“My father was very practical. He was a factory worker for most of his adult life, and he wanted me to go to college and improve my chances of earning a living better than him. We had very, very painful confrontations about it,” the “Apocalypse Now” icon continued.
Sheen’s sons, “Breakfast Club” actors Emilio Estevez and Ramon Estevez are both actors and have chosen not to anglicize their names for business. His daughter Renée Pilar Estevez also chose not to change her identity for Tinseltown.
The ‘Badlands’ star’s other son, ‘Two and a Half Men’ alum Charlie Sheen, was born Carlos Irwin Estévez and later changed his nickname.
As to whether he was opposed to one of his four children going to Hollywood, Sheen explained, “No, but honestly, I have to say that I was not aware of it. I was so involved and trying to be a provider that I was unaware of their inclination to be actors.
“I was doing a show once, and Emilio came along. I thought he was there to visit, but he got a part on the same show,” Sheen noted. “The only influence I had on Emilio was to keep his name. When he started, his agent advised him to change his name to Sheen and he wouldn’t. And I thank God he didn’t. did not.