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How Danny Trejo Achieved a Net Worth of $16 Million

Danny Trejo

Anyone who knows Danny Trejo probably associates him with villainous characters. However, It comes as no surprise because Danny Trejo has, for the longest time ever, taken up villainous anti-hero roles. To say that he plays them well would be an understatement. Danny Trejo brings to life any of the characters he takes on and makes you develop a love-hate relationship with them. Most people, however, know him for his role as the Machete, and his roles in films such as 'Breaking Bad'. Trejo’s net worth as of 2019 is estimated to be around $16 million dollars. This piece provides a detailed account of how Danny Trejo achieved this net worth.

His Background…

Dan Trejo is an American Latino actor born in Echo Park, Los Angeles California, on May 16, 1944. His parents Dionisio Trejo, a construction worker and Alice Rivera were Mexican. Danny Trejo is related to filmmaker Robert Rodriguez but the two were not aware of their relations until they filmed Desperado in 1995. Before he became the big movie star that he is today, Trejo was a labor foreman in construction. He was also always in and out of jail in the 60s. According to Wikipedia, he has suggested that his appearance always landed him in trouble with law enforcement. While there is no official account of his time in jail, he says his last term in prison lasted 5 years. He became a champion boxer while he was serving time in San Quentin. Trejo joined the prison’s 12- step program and has since credited his sobriety from drugs to it.

Trejo has some distinctive features which make him stand out from the crowd. He has a heavily lined face as a result of cystic acne, long hair and a thick mustache. He also has a large tattoo on his chest which he has displayed for many of his roles. The tattoo is that of a woman rocking a sombrero. Though he considered it a disadvantage, it seems Danny Trejo’s appearance has also worked out for him positively, as he has landed so many roles - most of them being thug roles. One interesting fact to note is that most of his roles are always named after knives or other sharp instruments: Razor Charlie in the film 'From Dusk till Dawn', Navajas in the film 'Desperado' which loosely translates to a folding knife in Spanish and Machete in 'Spy Kids'. So How did He Accumulate His Wealth?


Trejo’s first official paycheck in acting came when he was cast as a prison extra in the film 'Runaway Train' in 1985. Edward Bunker who had been to prison with Trejo, was writing the screenplay for the movie. While at it, he remembered Trejo’s boxing skills in prison and called him offering to pay him $320 per day to train one of the movie’s stars. Trejo readily accepted Since then, Trejo has appeared in dozens of films with his acting career spanning almost 4 decades. Most of his money is earned from his acting career and being a voice actor. He voiced the character of Enrique in King of the Hills and also voiced the Jaguar in an episode of Rick and Morty called Pickle Rick. According to Net Worth Buzz, a voice actor earns an average of $24k- $162k every year. Aside from that, he has appeared in various commercials including the Snickers commercial during the Super Bowl XLIV, where he played Marcia Brady. He also appeared in TV ads for Sling TV as himself.

Brand partnerships

It is no doubt that Danny Trejo is quite famous. He has over 1 million followers on Instagram and his popularity has helped him land partnerships with various brands such as Erectile Dysfunction Wearable Products among others.

Music videos cameos

Trejo does not limit his professional career to just films. He has also made appearances in various music videos including Enrique Iglesias’s ‘Loco’, Mob Depp’s ‘Got It Twisted’ and Kid Frost’s ’La Familia’. In addition, he got a chance to play his character Machete once more in the video ‘Angel in the Blue Jeans’ by Train. A Mexican rock band called Plastillina Mosh has paid him tribute with a song named after him.

Food industry

Danny Trejo is not only an actor but a successful businessman. He owns a number of hotels and restaurants in Los Angeles including, Trejo’s Tacos. It was his first business venture and was started in 2016. Trejo’s Cantina founded in 2017, was his second and Trejo’s Coffee and Donut followed. Trejo’s Coffee and Donut is on its way to getting valued at $100 million by Forbes. His rainbow cauliflower tacos were among LA Times’ top 10 favorite recipes of 2017. His restaurants are run and overseen by Chef Mason Royal. Trejo is looking to expand his empire with a donut food truck in Las Vegas. He also has his own brand of coffee and beer.


Danny Trejo has made significant contributions to various books such as Prison Ramen’s: Recipes and Stories from Behind Bars. His distinctive features have also allowed him to be featured in various comic books such as DMZ where a convicted felon bears his name and likeness. In the Gantz Manga series 30th volume, the hero fights off an alien giant that closely resembles Danny Trejo in Chapter 326 of the volume.


Trejo has lent his voice to many games including the Grand Theft Auto franchise where he voiced Umber Robina, in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City in 2002, and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories in 2006. He has also voiced a Ghoul named Raul Tejada in Fallout: New Vegas. He appeared in The Fight: Lights Out in 2010, as an instructor and for Call of Duty: Black Ops he appeared as himself. He participated in promotions of the game Magic: The Gathering Arena in 2019, alongside Sean Plott. He also voices and appears in Guns of Boom and makes an appearance in the intro of Tournament Paintball Max’d.


Trejo is not only an outstanding actor but also a brilliant businessman who knows how to utilize what he gets to earn more money. Above are some of the ventures he has invested in which have contributed to his net worth of $16 million dollars.

Allen Lee

Written by Allen Lee

Allen Lee is a Toronto-based freelance writer who studied business in school but has since turned to other pursuits. He spends more time than is perhaps wise with his eyes fixed on a screen either reading history books, keeping up with international news, or playing the latest releases on the Steam platform, which serve as the subject matter for much of his writing output. Currently, Lee is practicing the smidgen of Chinese that he picked up while visiting the Chinese mainland in hopes of someday being able to read certain historical texts in their original language.

Read more posts by Allen Lee

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