Netflix's latest hit miniseries, Griselda, depicts the fictionalized true story of Griselda Blanco, the famed cocaine lord known as "The Black Widow" and "La Madrina." In the series' premiere, Griselda arrives in Miami in the late '70s as a single mother of three sons, hoping to use her underworld connections to support her family. While the show mostly focuses on the boss's grisly activities as she rises to the top of the American drug-trading business, the show also makes sure to show both Griselda's fierce motherly instincts and how her boys, Dixon Trujillo-Blanco, Uber Trujillo-Blanco, and Osvaldo Trujillo-Blanco, grew up. During the course of the show she also welcomes a fourth son, Michael Corleone Blanco (yes, named after the Godfather character), with her third husband, Darío Sepúlveda.
When Griselda—spoiler alert (for as much as you can spoil a true crime story)—is eventually caught and sentenced to prison, her sons allegedly continued in the drug trade and were presumably targeted by their mother's enemies. By the time Griselda was released from jail, three of her four sons were dead. While the series condensed their deaths into one emotional scene in the finale (possibly due to the shortened amount of episodes), fans have been left wondering about the full true story of Griselda's sons.
How did Griselda's sons die?
In the final episode of Griselda, she is visited in prison by June Hawkins, a real-life intelligence agent played by Juliana Aidén Martinez who was part of the investigation that took the crime boss down. In the emotional scene, June informs Griselda that three of her four sons have been killed.
"Dixon was shot while he was walking to his car," Hawkins says. "Ozzy was in a crowded nightclub. Uber was shot in Colombia was he was making a drug deal." It is heavily implied that all three murders were coordinated by rival drug lords in retribution for Blanco's own actions.
The real-life details of the men's deaths were not as highly publicized as Griselda's years of crime activity. In July 2008, the Miami New Times reported that Dixon, Uber, and Osvaldo (a.k.a. Ozzy) had all been murdered, "purportedly in retribution for carnage she herself caused." Osvaldo's 1992 murder outside a Colombia nightclub was also reported by the U.S. Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General, with the report calling the death an assassination.
Where is Michael Corleone Blanco Now?
Griselda's youngest child Michael Corleone Blanco is the only one of the crime lord's children who is still alive. At the end of the show, Michael Corleone is still a toddler, and the last audiences see of him is in the scene of Sepúlveda's assassination. As seen in the series, Sepúlveda and Michael relocated to Colombia after Sepúlveda separated from Griselda; she was suspected of ordering the murder of her husband so she could bring Michael back to the U.S. Following Sepúlveda's death in 1983, Michael lived with Griselda in Irvine, California, until her arrest in 1985.
Per the Miami New Times, Michael spent his childhood and teenage years living with relatives or legal guardians while Griselda was incarcerated. "According to his friend and business manager, Cristian Rios, Michael had not seen his mother since she was released from state prison and deported to Colombia in 2004, though he spoke to her regularly on the phone and sent her home videos of himself with his wife and two children," the report reads.
In his only publicized run-in with the law, Michael was arrested for cocaine trafficking in May 2012, just months before his mother Griselda's death in September 2012 at the hands of an unknown assassin. He was charged with trying to buy five kilos from an undercover detective using $10,000 in cash, a motorcycle, and a diamond pendant necklace inscribed with the phrase "Kill All Rats."
Michael is now an entrepreneur and media personality who founded Pure Blanco, which is described as “a billionaire cartel lifestyle brand” that focuses on fashion, movies, music, and cannabis. In 2019, he joined the cast of the VH1 reality series Cartel Crew, which ran for three seasons before concluding in 2021 and followed the lives of children and grandchildren in the aftermath of their parents’ crimes. His wedding to co-star Marie Ramirez De Arellano was featured in a 2021 episode and they share a daughter named Faith.
What does her surviving family think about the show?
Days before Griselda hit Netflix, Michael Corleone and his wife Marie filed a lawsuit where they claim that Griselda's children’s likenesses were not authorized to be used in the series without compensation. Michael Blanco additionally alleged he participated in interviews between 2009 and 2022 with someone for the purpose of turning his life story into both a series and a book. Per IndieWire, he alleged that Netflix expressed interest, but did not want to use his interviews or other materials provided. However, the lawsuit alleges Griselda does in fact lean on Michael’s material, despite not compensating the family.
Michael also called the series "disrespectful" in an interview with Fox News. “Sofía Vergara did not consult with any members of the Blanco family as a sign of respect or elicit family details in portraying my mother,” he told the outlet. "When I learned of the Griselda project, my team reached out to Sofía's camp and offered my consultation services. Sofía's camp and the Netflix creators were disrespectful and ultimately produced the Griselda project on their own for commercial gain, without key details from the Blanco family. After the sit-down at the table, my lawyers formally sent a cease-and-desist letter to Netflix and Sofía's camp. As of today, Netflix nor Sofía's camp has made any attempt to reconcile. Regardless of public information, basic respect is warranted. I am Griselda’s only living son that has life rights agreements signed by Griselda herself in which she intended I carry out her life story.”
Vergara has not addressed the lawsuit directly thus far. In a recent interview, per IndieWire, the actor said of her portrayal, “I’m trying to understand [Griselda] from the beginning. I started from being fascinated by her, because she achieved many things that it was impossible for a woman to achieve, even though they were horrific.”
In an interview with Today, series co-creator and executive producer Eric Newman said of the lawsuit, "I dealt with similar suits from Pablo Escobar, his family, during the making of Narcos. I tend not to think much about them. It just feels a little bit unsurprising and kind of comes with the territory."
Stay In The Know
Marie Claire email subscribers get intel on fashion and beauty trends, hot-off-the-press celebrity news, and more. Sign up here.
If Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Were to Ever Return as Working Royals, They’d Have to Get Prince William’s Blessing First, Former Royal Butler Says
King Charles seems to be on board with a Sussex return, but William? That’ll be a harder sell.
By Rachel Burchfield
Here Are The 10 Best Spring Shoes You'll Need This Season
From dainty ballet flats to multicolored sneakers.
By Lauren Tappan
These Beauty Devices Never Go on Sale—Now They’re 20 Percent Off at Dermstore
LED face masks, hair straighteners, microdermabrasion tools, and more.
By Brooke Knappenberger