Lacerda spent his childhood between Rio de Janeiro, where he was born, and Recreio, a mining town where his grandparents lived. From the age of three to 16, he devoted himself to swimming, winning more than 170 medals. Convinced that it would be very difficult to make a living in the sport, he abandoned the idea of becoming a professional swimmer and started to make breaks as a model, besides working as a salesman for a clothing store. He attended a course of interpretation to get rid of shyness, which he felt would hinder his career as manager of a bank. He was ashamed of his 1.95 meters in height, confessing, "I thought that everybody was looking at me." Thiago was studying Business Administration at UERJ when he received an invitation to test for the part of a professor of swimming in Malhação. He resolved to take the risk and was awarded the role. After finishing recording the first scene, he felt he had discovered what he wanted to do in life. Two years later, the actor appeared as protagonist of the novela Terra Nostra, in which he played Matteo, an Italian immigrant who came to Brazil seeking a better life. Not only did Thiago conquer the actress Ana Paula Arósio in the series, but he conquered all of Brazil and became the leading actor of the Globo network. After his success as Matheo, he participated in the miniseries Aquarela do Brasil and the novelas As Filhas da Mãe and O Beijo do Vampiro. In 2003, he was invited to live the role of Giuseppe Garibaldi in the miniseries A Casa das Sete Mulheres. The actor considered the role a real gift, because, since the time of Terra Nostra, he had studied and admired the life of the Italian revolutionary. But Thiago realized that success and fame also have their down side. Hounded by paparazzi and gossip media, he sued the journalist and presenter Leão Lobo and Gugu Liberato, who wore swimwear in a program called Domingo Legal claiming to be the actor - and won both cases. "Gossip cannot interfere with the mechanism which governs each and every aspect: respect. If the person does not give me respect, I can do one of two things: either be full of 'porrada' or be civilized. I choose always to be civilized. I think after the measures they took, I learned to be respected."
Thiago is married to the actress Vanessa Lóes, and they have one son, Gael, and two daughters: Cora and Pilar.
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This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Thiago_Lacerda", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.