During Sean Penn’s rambling profile of El Chapo, the Oscar-winning actor noted several times how he felt like a “curiousity” to the drug lord. Penn appeared to believe El Chapo was enamored of his celebrity status, and given the kingpin’s desire to be immortalized in a biopic, this made sense. The profile also detailed how Penn’s partner in journalistic crime, Kate del Castillo, once tweeted a suggestion that El Chapo could use his powers for good. Del Castillo felt the ruthless drug lord could become a real-life Robin Hood. El Chapo was reportedly flattered at how the popular Telenovela actress (she’s famous for portraying crime bosses) would take an interest in him.
El Chapo sent her flowers, and they forged a friendship, but they never met until she and Penn flew into the Sinaloa mountains for Rolling Stone. All along, Penn addressed del Castillo as the interview broker, but as it turns out, El Chapo had no bloody idea who Penn was. NBC News uncovered a series of texts where del Castillo refers to El Chapo as “papa.” Oh boy: