Chuy Bravo

Chuy Bravo (born Jesús Melgoza; December 7, 1956 – December 14, 2019) was a Mexican-American actor and entertainer. He was the sidekick of host Chelsea Handler on the talk show Chelsea Lately during its run from 2007 to 2014. He usually provided comedic relief to Handler's show, and was the topic of many of her jokes.

Chuy Bravo
Chuy Bravo.jpg
Bravo at West Hollywood Gay Pride Parade in 2013
Jesús Melgoza[1]

(1956-12-07)December 7, 1956
DiedDecember 14, 2019(2019-12-14) (aged 63)
Mexico City, Mexico
Other namesLittle Nugget
OccupationTelevision personality, comedian, author
Years active2000–2019
Known forChelsea Lately

Early lifeEdit

Bravo was born in Tangancicuaro, Michoacán, Mexico the youngest of seven children. He became interested in acting when Three Amigos filmed in his village in Mexico. His family came to the San Fernando Valley at the age of fifteen. In his new home, Bravo had a tough time fitting in and finding work. He graduated from Sylmar High School and began work assembling PC boards, he also began his own janitorial service business. In the 1990s he fell into alcohol abuse and was imprisoned for sixteen months for Driving under the influence. Upon his release, he resolved to straighten out his life and for two years took acting classes. He went on to find an agent and begin auditioning. His first film role in Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002) did not make the final cut. [2][3][4]

Acting careerEdit

Bravo began acting in the early 1990s. He appeared in the films Tiptoes (2003) with Matthew McConaughey; The Rundown (2003) with The Rock; The Honeymooners (2005) with Cedric the Entertainer and an uncredited role in Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (2007).[4][5][2]

Bravo met Handler through a mutual director friend he was working with who told him that she was looking to cast a little person. After being introduced they soon became friends and started working together.[6][1] Bravo appeared in every episode of Chelsea Lately from 2007 till its end in 2014. Bravo was the first Latino talk show sidekick in American Television history.[2] Bravo also appeared in the behind-the-scenes mockumentary After Lately that ran concurrently from 2011 to 2013.[7]

When Handler's show ended in 2014 Bravo went on to appear in The Sex Trip (2016) and Buscando Nirvana (2017).[5] He appeared in the short film The One II - Resurrection of the Vampires (2015) and his last appearance in movies was a return to that series in The One: Horror – Cupido, Divinitas (2017).[8]

Bravo also appeared in pornographic films, notably for Vivid Entertainment, the most known of which is Chuy Bravo Porn Star.[9]


In 2013, Bravo was a competitor on the celebrity diving reality competition show Splash on ABC.[10] However, he suffered a freak injury prior to the competition's first round, breaking his heel, and was forced to withdraw. On the show Bravo said that he was very disappointed about his injury and that he wanted to show the world and a "special someone" (presumably Handler) that he was not lazy; he vowed to return for the second season of Splash if he was asked back and if the series were renewed (it was not).[11]

Personal life and deathEdit

Bravo had dwarfism, and was 4 feet 3 inches (130 cm) tall.[12]

In 2010 his book Little Nuggets of Wisdom Big Advice from the Small Star of Chelsea Lately was published.[2]

In 2012, Bravo revealed that he survived prostate cancer, which was treated quickly after it was diagnosed. He also said he is a recovering alcoholic and was nearly homeless at one point in his life. "I have been through a lot in my life... but I've overcome my struggles and now I'm finally living my life."[1]

Bravo started the Little Nugget Foundation in his hometown of Tangancicuaro to provide food and clothing for those struggling with alcoholism.[13][1]

Bravo served as master of ceremonies for the national comedy tour Comedians of Chelsea Lately that included Dov Davidoff and Christina Pazsitsky.[6]

He also started the Bravo Academy in Los Angeles, stating to have a focus on the Latin community in Hollywood. The academy's purpose is to help its talents participate in different projects in television, cinema and theater.[citation needed]

In 2013 Bravo opened a taco stand in Hollywood Chuy Bravo's Taqueria selling "tacos, carne asada burritos, tortas, nachos and sopes."[14] Bravo also created a signature line of chips and salsa, and sold other merchandise on his website.[15]

Bravo suffered gastrointestinal bleeding on December 14, 2019, and was rushed to the emergency room at Dalinde Medical Center in Mexico City. He suffered complications and an acute heart attack, after which he was pronounced dead. He was 63 years old.[16]


  1. ^ a b c d Sugey Palomares (December 5, 2012). "Chuy Bravo's Stunning Revelation: 'I'm a Cancer Survivor and a Recovering Alcoholic'". Latina. Retrieved February 24, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d "Chuy Bravo bio". The Ice House. 2009.
  3. ^ "Chuy Bravo". TMZ. August 20, 2014.
  4. ^ a b Hammer, Mike (July 12, 2013). "Long story short: How Chuy Bravo rose to fame". New York Daily News.
  5. ^ a b Bruce Haring (December 15, 2019). "Chuy Bravo Dies: Sidekick On E! Network Talk Show 'Chelsea Lately' Was 63". Deadline.
  6. ^ a b Diana Nollen (2012). "Chelsea's Handler: Chuy Bravo Just a little guy living large on cable TV and on the road". The Gazette.
  7. ^ "After Lately". IMDb.
  8. ^ "Chuy Bravo". IMDb.
  9. ^ Schlossberg, Mallory (May 13, 2014). "Chelsea Handler's Chelsea Lately Sidekick Chuy is a Porn Star - Are You Surprised?". Bustle.
  10. ^ "ABC formally reveals eight contestants competing on 'Splash' celebrity diving competition". Reality TV World.
  11. ^ "'Splash' eliminates Ndamukong Suh and loses Chuy Bravo to injury". Reality TV World.
  12. ^ Nardine Saad (December 16, 2019). "Chelsea Handler salutes the late Chuy Bravo, her former 'Chelsea Lately' sidekick". Los Angeles Times.
  13. ^ Ashmar Mandou (July 11, 2013). "Chuy Bravo Brings on the Laughs". Lawndale News.
  14. ^ Lesley Balla (August 29, 2013). "Chelsea Handler's Chuy Bravo Sells Tacos in Hollywood". Zagat.
  15. ^ "Chuy Bravo Booking Agent Contact Details". Speaker Booking Agency.
  16. ^ Mitchell McCluskey (December 17, 2019). "Chuy Bravo, Chelsea Handler's sidekick on TV talk show, dies at 63". CNN.

External linksEdit