Hopping on stage to grab a Golden Globe in front of Hollywood’s brightest stars is not what Jaime Camil is most excited about these days.
The 44-year-old Mexican actor could not conceal his nostalgic glee when it was announced that his boyhood celebrity crush Brooke Shields would join the cast of Jane the Virgin in its fourth season. “We were all in love with her when we were teenagers. Name one male specie that wasn’t in love with her in The Blue Lagoon. It’s incredible,” he tells PEOPLE CHICA of sharing scenes with the actress. “Her most important quality is what a sweetheart she is and what a beautiful human being she is. She is overwhelmingly nice.”
Shields’ five-episode arc, starting Feb. 9, will spice up the story line, according to Camil, and even have an impact on his character. “She is going to be a big part of Rogelio’s life, probably his new nemesis and that’s going to be fun.”
For an episode directed by Gina Rodriguez (who plays the titular Jane), Camil recently filmed his first scene with the legendary Calvin Klein model and remarked, “Dreams do come true.”
Not that his wife of four years, Mexican model Heidi Balvanera, has any reason to be jealous. Her husband is even more effusive about his family life. “That’s my best role, I love to be a father. My wife loves to be a mother, ” he says. “We are committed parents” to son Jaime Camil III, 3, and daughter Elena, 6. “We don’t have the 24-hour nanny.”
The foursome recently spent some quality time at a luxurious ski chalet, with requisite fireplace, in Lake Tahoe, one of the most scenic and slope-filled attractions in the States, courtesy of Airbnb. “I wanted to go to Lake Tahoe because I had never been. It was beautiful,” he says of their getaway. “I love to spend time with the family, it’s the most important thing for me.”
That includes keeping the romance alive with this wife, who turned 39 in September. “We have our date nights. We try to find time for ourselves,” he adds. “My New Year’s resolution is to live the here and now and continue to be a good parent for my kids, continue to be a good husband for Heidi.”
Camil keeps his brood in mind when choosing parts — the little ones appreciate their father’s animated efforts in particular. “I take on these voice-over roles because I know my kids are going to be very happy and excited to hear daddy’s voice on-screen,” says Camil, whose illustrated characters appear in major releases like The Secret Life of Pets as well as the TV series Elena of Avalor, whose Latin princess just happens to share a name with his daughter.
His children aren’t the only ones impressed with his animated endeavors: Coco, with its all Latin cast, took home the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Animated (Camil voiced Papa Rivera). And an upcoming Disney Channel collaboration has the busy actor raring to reconnect with his childhood self. “It’s a remake of a series that was super-hot in the ’80s that I used to watch when I was a kid.”
Of his success in English-language film and TV, the rising talent is grateful while noting that it didn’t come overnight: “It’s way more than what I ever expected. It wasn’t quick. I’ve been doing the pilot seasons and the auditions and I’ve been getting doors shut in my face for the past 10 or 12 years in the United States. So I guess it finally paid off.”