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Denzel Washington

Denzel WashingtonAKA Denzel Jermaine Washington, Jr.

Born: 28-Dec-1954
Birthplace: Mount Vernon, NY

Gender: Male
Religion: Protestant
Race or Ethnicity: Black
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Actor

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Training Day

Denzel Washington won Oscars as the rebellious slave unwilling to carry the American flag in the Civil War film Glory with Matthew Broderick, and as the crooked cop in Training Day with Ethan Hawke. In 1996 he became the first African-American to be judged People magazine's Sexiest Man Alive.

Washington says he learned about performing watching his father, a preacher, electrify the crowd at Sunday services, and he learned about drama and emotion listening to the chatter in his mother's beauty salon. He grew up in an integrated neighborhood on the edge of the Bronx, where West Indians, Italians, and blacks were neighbors. In college he earned a degree in journalism, but also appeared in several college plays and found acting more interesting.

Between low-paid stage roles, he earned the rent as a postal worker, garbage man, and factory worker. His first film, Carbon Copy, had Washington as the illegitimate son of George Segal, and after the movie bombed Washington went to work as an urban recreation center, overseeing kids playing sports and teaching once-a-week acting classes.

His breakthrough role was on TV's St Elsewhere with Ed Flanders and Howie Mandel, where Washington played the nervous new resident Dr Phillip Chandler. He has been considered a "prestige" Hollywood actor since his Oscar-nominated performance as Steve Biko in the anti-apartheid film Cry Freedom. He played the skirt-chasing trumpet-player in Mo' Better Blues with Wesley Snipes, the impatient civil rights leader Malcolm X, the homophobic attorney who represented Tom Hanks in Philadelphia, First Officer to Gene Hackman in Crimson Tide, Dakota Fanning's bodyguard in Man on Fire, the cop unraveling a hostage situation in Inside Man with Clive Owen, and the time-traveling hero of Deja Vu with Val Kilmer.

He met his wife, actress Paulette Pearson, when they both appeared in Wilma, the biography of track star Wilma Rudolph. Their eldest son, John David Washington, was a top running back at Morehouse College, and is currently on the practice squad for the St Louis Rams of the National Football League.

His parents divorced when Washington was in his early teens, and he sought refuge at the local Boys Club, where he received guidance that, he says, set him on "the path to purpose". Since becoming a movie star, he has long been the spokesman for the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, which receives proceeds from Washington's inspirational book A Hand to Guide Me. His generosity in supporting other charities rarely makes the news because his contributions are not accompanied by a press release, but he is known to have given millions to the Children's Fund of South Africa, Fisher Houses (which provides low-cost lodging for military families while soldiers are hospitalized), and the Church of God in Christ -- the denomination Washington grew up in, and the church his father preached for.

Father: Denzel Washington (minister)
Mother: Lennis "Lynne" Washington (beautician)
Sister: Lorice Washington
Brother: David Washington
Wife: Pauletta Pearson Washington (actress, b. 28-Sep-1950, m. 25-Jun-1983, two sons, two daughters)
Son: John David Washington (pro football player, b. 23-Apr-1983)
Daughter: Katia (b. 1987)
Son: Malcolm (twin b. 1991)
Daughter: Olivia (twin b. 1991)

    High School: Oakwood Academy, New Windsor, NY (1972)
    University: BA Journalism, Fordham University, New York, NY (1977)

    Oscar for Best Supporting Actor 1990 for Glory
    Golden Globe 1990 for Glory
    Golden Globe 2000 for The Hurricane
    Oscar for Best Actor 2002 for Training Day
    Tony 2010 Best Actor for Fences
    Member of the Board of Black Entertainment Television
    American Academy of Arts and Sciences 2010
    Risk Factors: Smoking

    St. Elsewhere Dr. Philip Chandler

    Fences (16-Dec-2016)
    The Great Debaters (11-Dec-2007)
    Antwone Fisher (12-Sep-2002)

    The Equalizer 2 (19-Jul-2018)
    Roman J. Israel, Esq. (10-Sep-2017)
    Fences (16-Dec-2016)
    The Magnificent Seven (8-Sep-2016)
    The Equalizer (7-Sep-2014)
    The March (27-Aug-2013) · Narrator [VOICE]
    2 Guns (30-Jul-2013)
    Flight (14-Oct-2012)
    Safe House (2-Feb-2012) · Tobin Frost
    Unstoppable (26-Oct-2010) · Frank
    The Book of Eli (14-Jan-2010) · Eli
    The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 (4-Jun-2009)
    The Great Debaters (11-Dec-2007)
    American Gangster (19-Oct-2007)
    Deja Vu (20-Nov-2006)
    Inside Man (16-May-2006)
    The Manchurian Candidate (22-Jul-2004)
    Man on Fire (21-Apr-2004) · John W. Creasy
    Out of Time (7-Sep-2003)
    Antwone Fisher (12-Sep-2002) · Jerome Davenport
    John Q (15-Feb-2002) · John Quincy Archibald
    Training Day (7-Sep-2001)
    Remember the Titans (23-Sep-2000)
    The Hurricane (17-Sep-1999) · Rubin Carter
    The Bone Collector (29-Aug-1999) · Lincoln Rhyme
    The Siege (6-Nov-1998) · Anthony Hubbard
    He Got Game (1-May-1998)
    Fallen (16-Jan-1998) · John Hobbes
    The Preacher's Wife (13-Dec-1996) · Dudley
    Courage Under Fire (12-Jul-1996) · Nat Serling
    Devil in a Blue Dress (16-Sep-1995)
    Virtuosity (4-Aug-1995) · Parker Barnes
    Crimson Tide (12-May-1995)
    Philadelphia (23-Dec-1993) · Joe Miller
    The Pelican Brief (17-Dec-1993)
    Much Ado About Nothing (7-May-1993) · Don Pedro
    Malcolm X (18-Nov-1992) · Malcolm X
    Ricochet (4-Oct-1991) · Nick Styles
    Mississippi Masala (18-Sep-1991) · Demetrius
    Mo Better Blues (3-Aug-1990) · Bleek Gilliam
    Heart Condition (2-Feb-1990)
    Glory (15-Dec-1989) · Trip
    The Mighty Quinn (16-Feb-1989) · Xavier
    For Queen and Country (17-May-1988) · Reuben
    Cry Freedom (5-Nov-1987)
    Hard Lessons: The George McKenna Story (11-Nov-1986)
    Power (9-May-1986)
    A Soldier's Story (13-Sep-1984) · Pfc. Peterson
    License to Kill (10-Jan-1984)
    Carbon Copy (25-Sep-1981)
    Wilma (19-Dec-1977)

Appears on the cover of:
Entertainment Weekly, 20-Dec-2002, DETAILS: Best of 2002 featuring Denzel Washington as Entertainer of the Year (photo by Norman Jean Roy)

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