Gloria Garcia, age 35, was born in Mexico City and moved to the United States when she was 9 years old after her father’s death. She grew up in Tucson, Arizona and studied drama at school and later at the University of Arizona where she graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Theatre Performance in 2010. When asked about her career choice, Gloria said, ‘I knew it early on I wanted to act and be involved in film somehow’. She worked as an actress for several years before she became known as the ‘Jakku Defender’ when she was chosen personally by J.J. Gloria Garcia:Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens


I grew up in New York with my dad, mom, sister, brother and my dog. I attended Parson’s School of Design before moving to Chicago to work on theatre productions with the Steppenwolf Theatre Company. – Gloria Garcia:Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens

Gloria Garcia: Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens
Gloria Garcia: Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens


Garcia is the youngest of four sisters, all whom reside with her.

I love my family so much. My sisters are my best friends, we are always there for each other no matter what, Garcia says. It feels like it’s been a long time since I’ve seen them and I can’t wait to see them. Gloria Garcia:Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens


I was born in the border town of Reynosa, Mexico. At the age of 7, I moved to El Paso, Texas. When I turned 11, my family moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma. Shortly after moving to Tulsa I found my love for acting. In 2009 I graduated from East Central University with a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communication with an emphasis on Film & Television Production.

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Physical info

I’m Mexican-American actress Gloria Garcia. I graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor’s degree in Cinema-Television Production where I learned about film, lighting, sound, script writing and a whole lot more. I love to act and produce movies as well as partake in other activities such as dance, art, surfing, painting and photography which have been most influential on my life.


Growing up, Gloria always knew she wanted to be an actress. After seeing a lot of his work as a child, she eventually realized her dream when J.J. Abrams called her personally to be part of Star Wars. Gloria was casted as the Jakku Defender, an important character with a long line of dialogue in the film. The actor plays the brave pilot’s stand-in during aerial dogfights against attacking Tie Fighters.


Wikipedia lists her only award to date as the Jakku Defender from the film, but it is assumed that there will be many more coming soon. Gloria’s accolades for this role have spanned as far as Berlin Film Festival where she has been recognized for her work as a budding talent. In addition, she also got to meet with J.J., Abrams before her audition which was an honor in itself.

Net worth

Born in 1982, Gloria Garcia is a Mexican-American actress who became known as the Jakku Defender in Star Wars ‘The Force Awakens’ when she was chosen personally by J.J. Abrams for the scene. Gloria had auditioned to be on the show ‘Star Wars Rebels’, but was not casted due to production costs and style differences which are both common among different productions.

Gloria Garcia: Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens
Gloria Garcia: Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens

sweetest time

Despite all the struggles she has been through, Gloria is grateful for her success. I feel so blessed to have that opportunity, said Gloria. It’s something I wanted to do my whole life. And now I’m living it.

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secrets of beauty

She started doing commercials for Proctor & Gamble at 3. As a teenager, she wanted to be a fashion designer but after getting an F from her sewing teacher because she refused to do homework, she decided on being an actress instead. Gloria then had a long stint of jobs as such before starring in The Force Awakens.

Gloria began acting when she was just 6 months old.

first love

Gloria came to New York when she was fifteen years old, after receiving a scholarship to a performing arts school. There she studied tap, ballet, jazz, acrobatics, and martial arts.

first success

Born on December 2, 1992, Gloria Garcia is a Mexican-American actress who grew up primarily in Los Angeles. When the opportunity to play a character who plays an integral role in Star Wars The Force Awakens presented itself, she grabbed the opportunity with both hands.

dearest person

– Born in San Diego, California, Gloria is the daughter of a Mexican father and an American mother.

– Gloria’s earliest memories are that of her parents setting up their home as they moved around various naval bases in the United States.

– Gloria spent her early childhood years living in Virginia Beach before she moved with her family to San Francisco when she was twelve years old.

How did you get involved with acting?

Growing up in the countryside of Mexico, I had a love for arts from a young age. I was able to perform on stage at an early age. It was all so natural that after two years of high school I took my talents north to L.A. so that I could pursue acting professionally. Â Â This wasn’t always easy but with persistence and humility, it has always been worth it!

Tell us about your role on Jakku

I had a four page dialogue with Oscar Issac, but I only filmed one scene. In the scene, my character’s starship has crashed on Jakku and I am talking to Oscar’s character Poe. There is no word that he makes it off planet so I offer him some food because he looks hungry. He tells me his name is Poe before getting called away by General Hux played by Domhnall Gleeson. It was an incredible experience working on such a big project!

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What do you think about ‘The Force Awakens’?

One of the most talked about movies this holiday season has been Star Wars The Force Awakens. The newest installment was released on December 18th and since then has been breaking box office records as it closed in on one billion dollars worldwide. As I began to watch, I noticed that there were two major protagonists, Rey (Daisy Ridley) who is a scavenger from Jakku and Finn (John Boyega) who is a Stormtrooper deserter.

Gloria Garcia: Bio and Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens
Gloria Garcia: Bio and  Jakku Defender and first female featured in The Force Awakens

What does it mean to you being a woman of color in the industry?

It’s great to be a woman of color working in the entertainment industry and to know that it is possible. I love it because of all the opportunities that come with it. I get to meet people from different cultures, backgrounds, and beliefs. I am able to put myself out there and make myself vulnerable in order to inspire others that they can do anything they set their minds on doing no matter what their circumstance or situation is.

If you could say anything to JJ Abrams what would it be?

I would like to thank JJ Abrams for his kindness by asking me personally to be the Jakku Defender in his film. He is an inspiration for all of us as filmmakers who believe in being inclusive, breaking stereotypes, and changing preconceived notions of what can be done with a camera. Thank you JJ Abrams!

Where can people find out more about you?

Ever since her introduction in Star Wars The Force Awakens, Gloria has been on TV giving interviews to show her dedication to the character and the people who made the film happen. You can find out more about her on Wikipedia or IMDB


Q. How long did it take you to memorize the words?

A. It took us two weeks to memorize our lines in English. Q. What is your favorite part of the movie? A. When Rey is driving with her speeder through Jakku, right before meeting BB-8, I just love that scene because there are a lot of new planets and we get to see them for the first time too! QA What does it feel like to be a featured actress?

By Bio Life Story Team

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