Often misunderstood, Malcolm X was one of the leading forces of the United States' Civil Rights Movement. He inspired many-and frightened many-but is destined to be remembered as one of the greatest men of his era. This riveting biography directed by Spike Lee and starring Denzel Washington in an Academy Award-nominated performance reveals the man at the center of a storm of change.
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Al Freeman Jr.Actor
Angela BassettActorCaptivating, gifted, and sensational, Angela Bassett's presence has been felt in theaters and on stages and television screens throughout the world. Angela Evelyn Bassett was born on August 16, 1958 in New York City, to Betty Jane (Gilbert), a social worker, and Daniel Benjamin Bassett, a preacher's son. Bassett and her sister D'nette grew up in St. Petersburg, Florida with their mother. As a single mother, Betty stressed the importance of education for her children. With the assistance of an academic scholarship, Bassett matriculated into Yale University. In 1980, she received her B.A. in African-American studies from Yale University. In 1983, she earned a Master of Fine Arts Degree from the Yale School of Drama. It was at Yale that Bassett met her husband, Courtney B. Vance, a 1986 graduate of the Drama School. Bassett first appeared in small roles on The Cosby Show (1984) and Spenser: For Hire (1985), but it was not until 1990 that a spate of television roles brought her notice. Her breakthrough role, though, was playing Tina Turner, whom she had never seen perform before taking the role, in What's Love Got to Do with It (1993). Bassett's performance earned her an Academy Award nomination and a Golded Globe Award for Best Actress.More
Denzel WashingtonActorDenzel Hayes Washington, Jr. was born on December 28, 1954 in Mount Vernon, New York. He is the middle of three children of a beautician mother, Lennis, from Georgia, and a Pentecostal minister father, Denzel Washington, Sr., from Virginia. After graduating from high school, Denzel enrolled at Fordham University, intent on a career in journalism. However, he caught the acting bug while appearing in student drama productions and, upon graduation, he moved to San Francisco and enrolled at the American Conservatory Theater. He left A.C.T. after only one year to seek work as an actor. His first paid acting role was in a summer stock theater stage production in St. Mary's City, Maryland. The play was "Wings of the Morning", which is about the founding of the colony of Maryland (now the state of Maryland) and the early days of the Maryland colonial assembly (a legislative body). He played the part of a real historical character, Mathias Da Sousa, although much of the dialogue was created. Afterwards he began to pursue screen roles in earnest. With his acting versatility and powerful presence, he had no difficulty finding work in numerous television productions. He made his first big screen appearance in Carbon Copy (1981) with George Segal. Through the 1980s, he worked in both movies and television and was chosen for the plum role of Dr. Philip Chandler in NBC's hit medical series St. Elsewhere (1982), a role that he would play for six years. In 1989, his film career began to take precedence when he won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of Tripp, the runaway slave in Edward Zwick's powerful historical masterpiece Glory (1989). Washington has received much critical acclaim for his film work since the 1990s, including his portrayals of real-life figures such as South African anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko in Cry Freedom (1987), Muslim minister and human rights activist Malcolm X in Malcolm X (1992), boxer Rubin "Hurricane" Carter in The Hurricane (1999), football coach Herman Boone in Remember the Titans (2000), poet and educator Melvin B. Tolson in The Great Debaters (2007), and drug kingpin Frank Lucas in American Gangster (2007). Malcolm X and The Hurricane garnered him Oscar nominations for Best Actor, before he finally won that statuette in 2002 for his lead role in Training Day (2001). Through the 1990s, Denzel also co-starred in such big budget productions as The Pelican Brief (1993), Philadelphia (1993), Crimson Tide (1995), The Preacher's Wife (1996), and Courage Under Fire (1996), a role for which he was paid $10 million. He continued to define his onscreen persona as the tough, no-nonsense hero through the 2000s in films like Out of Time (2003), Man on Fire (2004), Inside Man (2006), and The Taking of Pelham 123 (2009). Cerebral and meticulous in his film work, he made his debut as a director with Antwone Fisher (2002); he also directed The Great Debaters (2007) and Fences (2016). In 2010, Washington headlined The Book of Eli (2010), a post-Apocalyptic drama. Later that year, he starred as a veteran railroad engineer in the action film Unstoppable (2010), about an unmanned, half-mile-long runaway freight train carrying dangerous cargo. The film was his fifth and final collaboration with director Tony Scott, following Crimson Tide (1995), Man on Fire (2004), Déjà Vu (2006) and The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3. He has also been a featured actor in the films produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and has been a frequent collaborator of director Spike Lee. In 2012, Washington starred in Flight (2012), for which he was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor. He co-starred with Ryan Reynolds in Safe House (2012), and prepared for his role by subjecting himself to a torture session that included waterboarding. In 2013, Washington starred in 2 Guns (2013), alongside Mark Ryan Walberg. In 2014, he starred in The Equalizer (2014), an action thriller film directed by Antoine Fuqua and written by Richard Wenk, based on the television series of same name starring Edward Woodward. During this time period, he also took on the role of producer for some of his films, including The Book of Eli and Safe House. In 2016, he was selected as the recipient for the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award at the 73rd Golden Globe Awards. He lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife, Pauletta Washington, and their four children.More
Gwyneth PaltrowActorA tall, wafer thin, delicate beauty, Gwyneth Kate Paltrow was born in Los Angeles, the daughter of noted producer and director Bruce Paltrow and Tony Award-winning actress Blythe Danner. Her father was from a Jewish family, while her mother is of mostly German descent. When Gwyneth was eleven, the family moved to Massachusetts, where her father began working in summer stock productions in the Berkshires. It was here that she received her early acting training under the tutelage of her parents. She graduated from the all-girls Spence School in New York City and moved to California where she attended the UC Santa Barbara, majoring in Art History. She soon quit, realizing it was not her passion. She made her film debut with a small part in Shout (1991) and for the next five years had featured roles in a mixed bag of film fare that included Flesh and Bone (1993); Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle (1994); Se7en (1995); Jefferson in Paris (1995); Moonlight and Valentino (1995); and The Pallbearer (1996). It was her performance in the title role of Emma Woodhouse in Emma (1996) that led to her being offered the role of Viola in Shakespeare in Love (1998), for which she was awarded the Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Academy Awards for Best Actress in a Leading Role. Her roles have also included The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), Shallow Hal (2001), Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004), Iron Man (2008), Two Lovers (2008), and Country Strong (2010). She has two children with her former husband, English musician Chris Martin.More
Kate VernonActorKate Vernon was born to the celebrated actor John Vernon. As her father's career began to take off in the USA, the family moved from their home in Canada to Hollywood when Kate was 7 years old. With the ever growing career success of the late John Vernon (Dirty Harry (1971), National Lampoon's Animal House (1978), The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976)), Kate's childhood enabled her to be influenced and surrounded by many of Hollywood's leading actors, writers and artists. With these early experiences and influences, her decision to study to become an actress came as no surprise. After successfully completing her acting school studies, Kate's beautiful features, zest for life, easy-going and fun personality coupled with her dedicated work approach to her profession did not go unnoticed. During the early 80's, doors began to open for Kate as she secured a number of roles. It was during the mid-1980's that Kate landed her first feature film break with her role as "Benny" in the box office hit, Pretty in Pink (1986). In its success, it led to more TV work, box office and independent movie roles allowing Kate to star alongside some of Hollywood's leading men such as Denzel Washington, Willem Dafoe, Edward James Olmos, Christopher Lee and Richard Thomas. To date, Kate's long career as a busy actress has enabled her to play an engaging and wide variety of roles from the beautiful, funny, the love interest, dramatic, comedic, the misunderstood, the mistress, the mother and the dynamic. With her most recent roles in movies including the box office smash The Last Song (2010) which features Miley Cyrus, Greg Kinnear, Liam Hemsworth, Kelly Preston and the comedy, National Lampoon's Snatched (2011), which is due for imminent release, sees her alongside Andrew McCarthy and the acclaimed film legend Ernest Borgnine. Her versatility as an actress has seen Kate recently star in the hit TV series Heroes (2006), Bones (2005), as well as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2000), The Mentalist (2008), Saving Grace (2007) and her recurring role as "Ellen Tigh" (2004-2009) in the award-winning Battlestar Galactica (2004) (2004-2009) has won her an international fan base. Never one to be typecast, Kate's career has allowed her to work alongside many of TV and Film Industry leading writers, directors & producers such as Spike Lee, Peter Medak, Ronald D. Moore, David Eick, Joe Cacaci, David Weddle, Michael Nankin and John Woo. Her 20-year career has allowed her to feature in regular, recurring and guest roles in a number of major TV series including Heroes (2006) (2010), CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2000) (2004-2009), Star Trek: Voyager (1995) (1995), Nash Bridges (1996) (1996-1997), Battlestar Galactica (2004) (2004-2009), L.A. Law (1986) (1994), Bones (2005) (2010), Tales from the Crypt (1989) (1993), Who's the Boss? (1984) (1990) and many others. Some of her TV & Box Office Movies credits include The Last Song (2010), Malcolm X (1992), Roadhouse 66 (1984), National Lampoon's Snatched (2011), Blackjack (1998), Pretty in Pink (1986), Dangerous Touch (1994), Last Chance Cafe (2006) and Battlestar Galactica: The Plan (2009) to name but a few. With a timeless beauty and meticulous approach to her characters, these qualities have enhanced Kate's reputation not only as an on-screen beauty, but as an actress with experience to adapt to any kind of role.More