Adan Canto, known for his versatility in roles in 'X-Men' and 'Designated Survivor,' dies at 42

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FILE - Actor Adan Canto attends the Disney/ABC Winter 2014 TCA All Star Reception in Pasadena, Calif., on Jan. 17, 2014. Canto, the Mexican singer and actor best known for his roles in X-Men: Days of Future Past and Agent Game as well as the TV series The Cleaning Lady, Narcos, and Designated Survivor, died on Monday after a private battle with appendiceal cancer. He was 42. (Photo by Paul A. Hebert/Invision/AP, File)

LOS ANGELES – Adan Canto, the Mexican singer and actor best known for his roles in “X-Men: Days of Future Past” and “Agent Game” as well as the TV series “The Cleaning Lady," has died. He was 42.

Publicist Jennifer Allen, told The Associated Press Canto died of appendiceal cancer and had opted to keep his diagnosis private.

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“Adan had a depth of spirit that few truly knew. Those who glimpsed it were changed forever," Allen wrote in a statement. “He will be greatly missed by so many.”

Born in Ciudad Acuña, Coahuila, Mexico and raised in Texas, Canto began his career at age 16, when he left home for Mexico City to work as a singer-songwriter. He then began pursuing acting, making his TV debut on the 2009 Mexican series “Estado de Gracia.” His American debut came later, on Kevin Williamson’s 2013 Fox drama series “The Following,” which starred Kevin Bacon.

His notable roles include Vice President-elect Aaron Shore on “Designated Survivor,” Colombian politician Rodrigo Lara Bonilla on “Narcos,” and the mutant Sunspot in "X-Men: Days of Future Past." Canto starred in Halle Berry’s directorial debut, “Bruised,” as well as “Agent Game.”

He also directed his first short film in 2014 and a second one in 2020, a provocative western starring Theo Rossi.

Canto was starring as Armand Morales on Fox’s “The Cleaning Lady" at the time of his death, which is currently filming its third season. He was unable to participate in the production due to his illness but was hoping to rejoin later in the season.

Canto had a broad smile and a boisterous laugh. His friends said he also had a sensitivity and humility that could seem at odds with the big frame and square jaw of a leading man.

Kiefer Sutherland, who starred alongside Canto on “Designated Survivor,” shared a tribute on his Instagram page.

“It seems lately I have had to make too many posts like this one, but I am heartbroken by the loss of Adan Canto. He was such a wonderful spirit,” Sutherland wrote in a caption partnering a photo of the two of them on set. “As an actor his desire to do well, to be great, and then do better, was truly impressive and he will be greatly missed. I am also heartbroken for his wife, Steph and his two young children. Adan, may you rest in peace.”

Canto is survived by his wife, Stephanie Ann Canto, and two children, Roman Alder, 3, and Eve Josephine, 18 months.

“Forever my treasure Adan, see you soon,” his wife wrote on her Instagram account.

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