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Emilio Estevez reveals the ‘one thing’ dad Martin Sheen would do over if he could

In 1958, Sheen stopped using his birth name, Ramón Gerard Estévez, to audition for roles in Hollywood.
/ Source: TODAY

Emilio Estevez is getting ready to re-release his 2010 film, "The Way," which he originally directed and co-starred in alongside his dad, Martin Sheen.

Although the film will be exactly the same, Estevez says there's one big difference that fans should take note of, and that's the way his father is credited in the film.

Pitbull, Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez, Sophia Grace Brownlee, Rosie McClelland And Kris Allen On "Exta"
Martin Sheen (left) and Emilio Estevez in 2012 in Los Angeles. Noel Vasquez / Getty Images

During a May 9 chat with Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager on TODAY's fourth hour, Estevez said Sheen decided to use his birth name, Ramón Gerard Estévez, instead of his stage name, so he could pay homage to his Hispanic roots and his late father, Francisco.

He explained that Sheen always regretted changing his name to get ahead in Hollywood.

"Back in the day in 1958, he changed his name from Ramón Estévez to Martin Sheen because, at the time, there was a lot of prejudice against people with the Hispanic name," Estevez shared.

"Years later, in 1967, my grandfather, Francisco, to whom I dedicate the movie to, came to see him on Broadway when he was doing, 'The Subject Was Roses,'" Estevez explained. "He stood outside of the theater and looked up at the marquee, and my dad saw him shake his head in disappointment, and so he never got over that.

"And so I think when it was time for me to sort of start making those moves and start getting out and doing auditions, he said, 'Man, if I had one thing to do over, it was that I never would have changed my name.'"

Emilio Estevez on the TODAY show
Estevez said his dad had a flip phone "up until a year and half ago."Nathan Congleton

Estevez noted his dad never changed his name legally — just for the big screen.

Estevez said his father opted to use his birth name, as a way to rewrite his wrongs, rather than the one his fans know him for as an on-screen credit in the re-release of "The Way."

“So, as executive producer, it says: Ramón Gerard Estévez."

"Oh, my gosh! I bet your grandfather somewhere is smiling," Jenna said.

In "The Way," Sheen played a father who heads overseas to recover the body of his estranged son (Estevez) who died while traveling Spain's Camino de Santiago. As a way to get closer to his son, he decides to make the journey himself with his son's ashes in tow.

Estevez plans on re-releasing the film nationwide in select theaters on May 16.