Graduating in 1992, Marcelo lived his life as a spoiled child who enjoyed getting everything he wants. He enjoyed parties, drinks, and drugs. More than anything, Marcelo loved his sister-in-law Fabiana, Rodrigo's wife. However, she rejected him and didn't want to hear about his love for her.
Marcelo got involved in Victor's plan to overthrow Rodrigo, who, being the oldest brother, got all the money and businesses of the family, as well, his desire for Fabiana could be the reason why he worked against his brother.
Following the kidnapping of Fabiana at Club Moderno by the Comando Sombra, and the death of Rodrigo at the Branco HQ, Marcelo went along with Giovanna Taveres, Fabiana's sister, to the Nova Esperança in order to pay the ransom, but didn't have enough money. Soon the Unidade de Forças Especiais attacked the favela, and Marcelo and Giovanna were captured by the unit, and later sold to the Crachá Preto. The Crachá Preto Underboss Milo Rego, then ordered his men to burn Marcelo alive, killing him.
The youngest child of the Branco family, Marcelo graduated high school in 1992. At some point, Marcelo's father died in a brothel of a heart attack. In March 2009, his brother Rodrigo married Fabiana Taveres. Over time, Marcelo and Fabiana had begun to hang out together, and it was implied that Marcelo had a crush on Fabiana, who didn't want to know about it.
At some point prior to 2012, Marcelo became jealous of Rodrigo's wealth, and so Marcelo began to work for his second older brother Victor, in order to "teach Rodrigo a lesson" although he was never aware of Victor's actual intentions for Rodrigo to be killed.
Massacre in Panama
As a part in his work for his older brother Victor, Marcelo and Passos has to deliver a bag full of money from Panama. Along with Max, they hang out and relax on a private yacht, along with a friend of Marcelo, Daphne Bernstein.
A few hours later, the ship is attacked by a group of pirates. Marcelo and Passos are able to get the money bag off the yacht and put it in a truck. Max and Passos fight off the pirates in order to save the passengers, while Marcelo drives away from the scene with the money.
- "Wow - look at Marcelo, he still dances like a fool."
- ―Passos on Marcelo, at the party.
One Monday, around a month after the incident on the yacht, the Brancos host a charity event at their house, and invited many friends and associates, such as UFE commander Armando Becker, doctor Arthur Fischer, and Police detective Wilson Da Silva.
Suddenly, Comando Sombra members attack the party and try to kidnap both Rodrigo and Fabiana. Bodyguard Max Payne saves the couple before the Comando Sombra are able to escape. When Fabiana is saved by Max, Marcelo, and Becker calm her down, and when Rodrigo is saved, Marcelo and the rest of family rush to see Rodrigo.
Organs harvesting scandal
One night, a couple of days after the shootout at the Branco party, Marcelo flies via helicopter to a party at the Club Moderno nightclub, along with his sisters-in-law, Fabiana and Giovanna, as well bodyguards Max and Raul. During the flight, Fabiana thanked Max for saving her life, while Marcelo joked that he helped too, leading Fabiana to tease him about his cowardice.
Marcelo and his sisters-in-law entered the club along with Max watching over them. While Fabiana and Giovanna went to the dance floor, Marcelo went to the VIP room with Max by his side. Marcelo tries to sit in his favorite place but is stopped by the manager, who explains that the football star Claudio already took the place, leading Marcelo to insult the star while talking to the manager. Angry, Marcelo went to the bar, exchanging some words with Max before meeting his friend Fabio. A few minutes later, the Comando Sombra attack and take Marcelo, Fabiana, and Giovanna. Marcelo's kidnapper is soon killed by Max, while Marcelo escapes, ending up in Raul's helicopter.
As he fights the kidnappers, Max goes to the rooftops of the club, after escaping from a CS helicopter. Max is then found by Marcelo and Raul, who are in the helicopter. As a few Comando Sombra members arrive, Marcelo encourages Max to run to the flying helicopter. Max manages to get on the helicopter, and Marcelo takes a seat near Raul. After Max told them about the events at the club, Marcelo notices Giovanna and Fabiana being taken to an old helicopter by the CS. Marcelo calls out for Giovanna, who begins to run away from her kidnappers. Giovanna is saved, thanks to Max shooting down the gangsters who tried to kill them. Fabiana, however, is taken by the Comando Sombra.
Under the orders of Rodrigo, Max and Raul go to a deal with the Comando Sombra at the Galatians FC stadium, but they are ambushed by another gang, and lose the money. Following a failed attempt to rescue Fabiana from docks that served as a hideout for the CS, Max and Raul return to Branco HQ.
On Sunday morning, Max and Raul enter Branco's office. After a short conversation, Marcelo is ordered by Victor, along with Passos, to get into his helicopter. Minutes later, the building is attacked by the Crachá Preto, and Rodrigo is killed by an unknown assassin.
- "Faba! Seu filho da puta! (English: Faba! You motherfucker!)"
- ―Marcelo as he is taken away from Fabiana's body
After the death of Rodrigo, which was another part of Victor's plan, Max Payne calls them, revealing he's still alive, as well telling where Fabiana is held - in Nova Esperança favela. During the phone call, Marcelo blames Max for the death of his brother.
Marcelo, along with Giovanna arrive to the favela in order to trade money for Fabiana, though the ransom money was not enough, leading the CS leader Serrano to yell at them. Max interrupts, telling Serrano to put down the guns but is unsuccessful. Serrano executes Fabiana and then shoots Marcelo in the knee, but before he can kill him, Giovanna and Max, the UFE attack the favela, and capture both Marcelo and Giovanna.
- "Não, não, não, não! (English: No, no, no, no!)"
- ―Marcelo's screams as he dies.
Marcelo is later sold to the Crachá Preto, along with Giovanna. He and Giovanna end up in the hands of The Crachá Preto second-in-command, Milo Rego, who orders one of his men to brutally burn Marcelo to death in order to shift the blame away from the Crachá Preto to the local gangs.
Max rushes to help Marcelo, but it is too late, and Marcelo dies a slow and painful death. Max then avenges Marcelo by forcing Rego's own machete into his neck. Following this incident, Max and Giovanna escape the scene and the favela, leaving Marcelo's burned corpse.
By the time Max began to fight the UFE, Marcelo's status was unknown to the general public, and a TV news report stated that he is missing.
Personality and traits
- "He was a good time guy, if your idea of a good time was an expensive suit, a bottle or champagne, and nothing between the ears."
- ―Max Payne
Marcelo was an easy-going and relaxed man. He often acted in haste and was often described as an idiot by many people, such as Passos and Da Silva, due to his reckless behavior. Marcelo was also a very loud, cheerful man and enjoyed joking with his family and friends. However, Marcelo's desire for monetary gain overwhelmed him to the point of displaying obvious disappointment at the failed kidnapping of Rodrigo.
With all these traits, Marcelo was jealous of his older brother Rodrigo, who was very successful and wealthy, while Marcelo only 'lived well', according to Da Silva. Marcelo also found a love interest in Fabiana, his sister-in-law, and Rodrigo's wife, but she didn't return his affection and preferred to not know about his love for her. This may be the reason why Marcelo plotted against his brother. Despite these traits, Marcelo showed a great amount of loyalty and love for his family, angrily blaming Max for Rodrigo's death, shouting and cursing the Comando Sombra for Fabiana's death. During the Comando Sombra attack at Marcelo's regular nightclub, he shows genuine concern when Max falls from the helicopter along with brushing off the traumatizing chain of events, motioning to Raul Passos to ensure the safety of Giovanna. Marcelo's desperation to save Fabiana and unwavering trust in his brother Victor ultimately would sum up to his demise when he fell for Victor's plan: to become the sole surviving Branco and use the death of his family to bolster his political standing.
Marcelo's obsession with Fabiana can be seen as his primary weakness, one matched by Max, whose commentary explained "[his] weakness was the drink. Passos's was [Giovanna]". Further evidence of Marcelo's affection for Fabiana can be seen as he sobs in the background at her loss.
The similarities between Marcelo and Passos are subtle, each having a weakness for the Taveres sisters along with ulterior motives behind Max's employment. Although duplicitous, both are pawns with blinders but despite their purpose in hiring Max, both end up appreciating his frank and "real" outlook on life while attempting to cheer up the bitter, cynical bodyguard.
Behind the scenes
Appearances and role in the series
Marcelo's only appearance in the Max Payne series was in the 2012 game Max Payne 3. Marcelo's role and intentions in the game are clouded by his foolish and self-serving personality. While acting as a supporting character, his affiliation and loyalty for Victor Branco, his older brother and the game's main antagonist, can put him in the antagonist category even though he was unaware of Victor's actual plot. His relationship with Max is mostly friendly, albeit unreciprocated, hinting that roping Max in was either strictly business or an act through proxy by his brother, Victor. Despite his general uncouth and grating personality, his relationship with Max begins with suspicion and ignorance of Max's pain to an unwilling confidant and genuine concern for Max's safety when pulling him aboard and watching him fall from a helicopter. From his actions and reactions, the story suggests that Marcelo knew nothing about Victor's endgame, simply partnering up for a ransom, even showing uncontrollable anger and grief upon learning of Rodrigo's death. Marcelo's plan to earn money ends up with a bitterly ironic death: attempting to deliver a ransom and ending up a victim to the same PMCs hired by Victor who intercepted the first ransom delivery by Raul Passos and Max Payne. Thus, Marcelo's newfound fortune went up in flames just before Max could save him, a recurring theme throughout the Max Payne series.
Marcelo Branco was voiced by Dillon Porter in the 2012 Max Payne 3, who also made the motion-capture of the character. Porter is a rather small-time actor, with Marcelo Branco is his first known, major role. Porter was assigned for the role mainly because Rockstar Games has decided to use lesser-known actors for their video games in recent years.
- Max Payne 3