Forest Whitaker

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Real Name: Forest Steven Whitaker
Birth Place: Longview, Texas, USA
Birth Date: July 15, 1961
Occupation: Actor, Producer, Director

Forest Whitaker Biography


Forest Whitaker has packaged a king-size talent into his hulking 6' 2", 220 lb. frame. The athletically-inclined Whitaker initially found his way into college via a football scholarship. Later, however, he transferred to USC where he set his concentration on music and earned two more scholarships training as an operatic tenor. This, in turn, led to another scholarship at Berkeley with a renewed focus on acting and the performing stage.Whitaker made his film debut at the age of 21 in the raucous comedy Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) wherein he played, quite naturally, a footballer. He went on to play another sports-oriented student, a wrestler, in his second film Vision Quest (1985). He gained experience on TV as well with featured spots on such varied shows as "Diff'rent Strokes" (1978) and "Cagney & Lacey" (1981), not to mention the TV-movie Civil War epic "North and South" (1985) and its sequel. The movie that truly put him on the map was The Color of Money (1986). His one big scene as a naive-looking pool player who out-hustles Paul Newman's Fast Eddie Felson was pure electricity. This led to more visible roles in the "A" class films Platoon (1986), Stakeout (1987), and Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), which culminated in his breakout lead portrayal of the tortured jazz icon 'Charlie "Bird" Parker' in Clint Eastwood's passion project Bird (1988), for which Whitaker won the Cannes Film Festival award for "best actor" and a Golden Globe nomination.While his "gentle giant" characters typically display innocence, indecision, and timidity along with a strong underlying humanity, he has certainly not shied away from the edgier, darker corners of life as his occasional hitmen and other menacing streetwise types can attest. Although in only the first section of the film, he was memorable as the IRA-captured British soldier whose bizarre relationship with a mysterious femme fatale serves as the catalyst for the critically-lauded drama The Crying Game (1992). Always a willing participant to push the envelope, he's gone on to enhance a number of lesser films. Among those was his plastic surgeon in Johnny Handsome (1989), gay clothing designer in Robert Altman's Prêt-à-Porter (1994), alien hunter in Species (1995), absentee father confronted by his estranged son in Smoke (1995), and Mafia hitman who models himself after the samurai warrior in Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999), among many others. As would be expected, he's also had his share of epic-sized bombs, notoriously the L. Ron Hubbard sci-fi disaster Battlefield Earth (2000). On the TV front, he was the consulting producer and host of a revamped Rod Serling's cult series classic "The Twilight Zone" (2002), which lasted a disappointing one season.In the early 1990s, Whitaker widened his horizons to include producing/directing and has since gained respect behind the camera as well. He started things off co-producing the violent gangster film A Rage in Harlem (1991), in which he co-starred with Gregory Hines and Robin Givens, and then made his successful directorial debut with the soulful Waiting to Exhale (1995), showcasing a legion of distaff black stars. He also directed co-star Whitney Houston's music video of the movie's theme song ("Shoop Shoop"). Most recently, he scored with audiences helming the fluffy romantic comedy First Daughter (2004) with Katie Holmes and Michael Keaton.He is married to former model Keisha Whitaker and has three children by her. His younger brothers Kenn Whitaker and Damon Whitaker are both actors as well. Whitaker's multimedia company, Spirit Dance Entertainment, includes film, television and music production. He works closely with a number of charitable organizations, giving back to his community by serving as an Honorary Board Members for Penny Lane, an organization that provides assistance to abused teenagers, the Human Rights Watch and The Hope North organization.

Forest Whitaker Movies / TV-Shows


Black Panther (2018)
Sorry to Bother You (2018)
Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives (2017)
Roxanne Roxanne (2017)
The Forgiven (2017)
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)
Arrival (2016)
Southpaw (2015)
Dope (2015)
Empire (2015)
Songs My Brothers Taught Me (2015)
Sewing Hope (2015)
Taken 3 (2014)
19th Annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards (2014)
Food Chains (2014)
Star Wars Rebels (2014)
Two Men in Town (2014)
Repentance (2013)
Lee Daniels' The Butler (2013)
Pawn (2013)
Zulu (2013)
The Queen Latifah Show (2013)
A Single Shot (2013)
Fruitvale Station (2013)
Mysteries of the Unseen World (2013)
Out of the Furnace (2013)
Africa (2013)
Black Nativity (2013)
The Last Stand (2013)
A Dark Truth (2012)
Oprah Prime (2012)
Ernest & Celestine (2012)
Freelancers (2012)
Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior (2011)
Catch .44 (2011)
Serving Life (2011)
The Jonathan Ross Show (2011)
Monte Carlo (2011)
Our Family Wedding (2010)
Repo Men (2010)
The 82nd Annual Academy Awards (2010)
My Own Love Song (2010)
A Man's Story (2010)
Lullaby for Pi (2010)
The Experiment (2010)
Where the Wild Things Are (2009)
Hurricane Season (2009)
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (2009)
Brick City (2009)
We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial (2009)
Powder Blue (2009)
Crips and Bloods: Made in America (2008)
Dragon Hunters (2008)
Vantage Point (2008)
Fragments (2008)
Street Kings (2008)
The Air I Breathe (2007)
Ripple Effect (2007)
The Great Debaters (2007)
Even Money (2006)
The Marsh (2006)
Everyone's Hero (2006)
The Last King of Scotland (2006)
Before the Music Dies (2006)
American Dad! (2005)
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (2005)
American Gun (2005)
A Little Trip to Heaven (2005)
Criminal Minds (2005)
Jiminy Glick in Lalawood (2004)
UFC 46: Supernatural (2004)
First Daughter (2004)
The Ellen DeGeneres Show (2003)
Jimmy Kimmel Live! (2003)
Chasing Papi (2003)
Deacons for Defense (2003)
Phone Booth (2002)
The Twilight Zone (2002)
Last Call with Carson Daly (2002)
Door to Door (2002)
The Shield (2002)
Panic Room (2002)
American Idol (2002)
Friday Night with Jonathan Ross (2001)
Green Dragon (2001)
The Feast of All Saints (2001)
The Follow (2001)
The Fourth Angel (2001)
Four Dogs Playing Poker (2000)
Battlefield Earth (2000)
American Masters Clint Eastwood: Out of the Shadows (2000)
Light It Up (1999)
Independent Lens (1999)
Witness Protection (1999)
Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999)
Body Count (1998)
Hope Floats (1998)
The View (1997)
The Daily Show (1996)
Phenomenon (1996)
Rebound: The Legend of Earl 'The Goat' Manigault (1996)
Smoke (1995)
Species (1995)
Waiting to Exhale (1995)
Mr. Holland's Opus (1995)
Jason's Lyric (1994)
The Enemy Within (1994)
Inside the Actors Studio (1994)
Ready to Wear (1994)
Blown Away (1994)
ER (1994)
Last Light (1993)
Strapped (1993)
Body Snatchers (1993)
Late Show with David Letterman (1993)
Late Night with Conan O'Brien (1993)
Lush Life (1993)
Consenting Adults (1992)
The Crying Game (1992)
Article 99 (1992)
Diary of a Hitman (1991)
A Rage in Harlem (1991)
Criminal Justice (1990)
Downtown (1990)
Johnny Handsome (1989)
Bird (1988)
Bloodsport (1988)
Good Morning, Vietnam (1987)
Biography (1987)
Stakeout (1987)
Platoon (1986)
The Color of Money (1986)
North and South, Book II (1986)
American Masters (1985)
Amazing Stories (1985)
Vision Quest (1985)
North & South: Book 1, North & South (1985)
Live with Kelly and Ryan (1983)
Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)
Tag: The Assassination Game (1982)
The Fall Guy (1981)
Cagney & Lacey (1981)
Hill Street Blues (1981)
Trapper John, M.D. (1979)
Diff'rent Strokes (1978)
Saturday Night Live (1975)
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