Djimon Gaston Hounsou (/ /, JY-mən OON-soo; French: [dʒimɔ̃ unsu]; born April 24, 1964) is a Beninese-born actor. He began his career appearing in music videos and made his film debut in Without You I'm Nothing (1990). He then earned widespread recognition for his role as Cinqué in the Steven Spielberg film Amistad (1997), which earned him a Golden Globe nomination. For his performances in In America (2002) and Blood Diamond (2006), Honsou was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Djimon Gaston Hounsou
April 24, 1964
|Partner||Kimora Lee Simmons (2007–2012)|
In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he portrays Korath the Pursuer in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), Captain Marvel (2019) and What If...? (2021). In the DC Extended Universe, he appears as the Fisherman King in Aquaman (2018), and as the wizard Shazam in Shazam! (2019), Black Adam (2022), and Shazam! Fury of the Gods (2023). His other notable films include Stargate (1994), Gladiator (2000), Constantine, The Island (both 2005), Special Forces (2011), How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014), Furious 7 (2015), The Legend of Tarzan (2016) and A Quiet Place Part II (2021).
Early life edit
Hounsou was born in Cotonou, Benin, to Albertine and Pierre Hounsou. He immigrated to Lyon in France at the age of 12 with his brother, Edmond. Soon after arriving there, he dropped out of school and was homeless for a time. A chance meeting with a photographer led to an introduction to fashion designer Thierry Mugler, who encouraged Hounsou to pursue a modelling career. In 1987, he became a model and established a career in Paris. He moved to the United States in 1990.
Between 1989 and 1991, Hounsou appeared in the music videos for "Straight Up" by Paula Abdul, "Love Will Never Do (Without You)" by Janet Jackson, and Madonna's "Express Yourself". He also appears in En Vogue's music video for "Hold On".
Hounsou's film debut was in the 1990 Sandra Bernhard film Without You I'm Nothing. He had television parts on Beverly Hills, 90210 and ER and a guest starring role on Alias. He had a larger role in the science fiction film Stargate.
Hounsou received wide critical acclaim and a Golden Globe Award nomination for his role as Cinqué in the 1997 Steven Spielberg film Amistad, and gained further notice as Juba in the 2000 film Gladiator. In 2004, he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for In America, making him the fourth African male to be nominated for an Oscar. In 2005 he played a mercenary in the movie The Island alongside Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson. In 2006 he won the National Board of Review Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Blood Diamond, and received Broadcast Film Critics Association, Screen Actors Guild Award and Academy Award nominations for this performance.[unreliable source?]
Director Tim Story told IGN that if he had done a third Fantastic Four film, he would have liked Hounsou to portray Black Panther. In November 2008, it was announced that Hounsou would provide the voice of Black Panther in the television series of the same name. He had signed on to play Abdiel in the film version of John Milton's Paradise Lost with Benjamin Walker and Bradley Cooper, but the film was scrapped in early February 2012.
In 2013, he appeared in the comedy film Baggage Claim alongside Paula Patton. He also voiced Drago Blodfist in How to Train Your Dragon 2 and portrayed Korath the Pursuer in the Marvel Studios film Guardians of the Galaxy, both in 2014. He played villains in two 2015 films: Seventh Son and Furious 7, the latter being the seventh installment of The Fast and the Furious franchise.
In 2018 Hounsou joined the DC Extended Universe, voicing the Fisherman King Ricou in Aquaman (with the character motion-captured by Andrew Crawford). He then replaced Ron Cephas Jones as the Wizard Shazam in Shazam! (2019). He reprised his role in Black Adam (2022) and Shazam! Fury of the Gods (2023). Also in 2019, he reprised his role as Korath in the Marvel Studios film Captain Marvel and then in the animated series What If...?.
Other work edit
In 2010, Hounsou was featured as the narrator in ESPN's series of "32 Teams, 1 Dream" commercials for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. He spoke at the Summit on Climate Change at the United Nations on 22 September 2009. On 1 December 2009, he told French media that developed countries "need to be held accountable" for their contribution to climate change.
In 2018, Hounsou made his directorial debut with the documentary film In Search of Voodoo: Roots to Heaven, which examines the history, nature and religious practices of West African Vodun. The documentary premiered at the Miami International Film Festival on 10 March 2018.
Personal life edit
In 2007, Hounsou began dating model Kimora Lee Simmons. In 2009, Simmons gave birth to their son, Kenzo Lee Hounsou. Hounsou and Simmons visited Hounsou's family in his native Benin in the summer of 2008, where the two participated in a traditional commitment ceremony. They were adorned in traditional clothing and used the ceremony, in the presence of Hounsou's family, to confirm that they were "dedicated to each other 100%", although they emphasized the ceremony was not a wedding. In the début of Kimora Lee Simmons' show Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane, he was billed as her husband. Hounsou and Simmons, who were never legally married in the United States, announced their separation in November 2012.
|1990||Beverly Hills, 90210||Doorman||Episode: "Class of Beverly Hills"|
|1999||ER||Mobalage Ikabo||6 episodes|
|2000||The Wild Thornberrys||Villager (voice)||Episode: "Luck Be an Aye-Aye"|
|2001||Soul Food||Victor Onuka||Episode: "Games People Play"|
|2003–2004||Alias||Kazari Bomani||3 episodes|
|2010||Black Panther||T'Challa / Black Panther (voice)||6 episodes|
|2016||Wayward Pines||CJ Mitchum||8 episodes|
|2018||DreamWorks Dragons||Drago Bludvist (voice)||Episode: "King of Dragons, Part 2"|
|2019||The Longest Day in Chang'an||Master Ge||Episode: "Time Of Great Waste"|
|2021||Invincible||Martian Emperor (voice)||Episode: "Neil Armstrong, Eat Your Heart Out"|
|2021||What If...?||Korath (voice)||Episode: "What If... T'Challa Became a Star-Lord?"|
Video games edit
|2020||NBA 2K21||Coach Henry Bishop||Also motion capture|
Awards and nominations edit
|2004||Academy Awards||Best Supporting Actor||In America||Nominated|
|2004||Black Reel Awards||In America||Won|
|Broadcast Film Critics||Nominated|
|1998||Golden Globe Awards||Best Actor – Drama||Amistad||Nominated|
|2004||Independent Spirit Awards||Best Supporting Male||In America||Won|
|1998||NAACP Image Awards||Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture||Amistad||Won|
|2004||Outstanding Supporting Actor||In America||Nominated|
|2006||National Board of Review||Best Supporting Actor||Won|
|2001||Screen Actors Guild||Outstanding Cast in a Motion Picture||Gladiator||Nominated|
|2007||Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role||Blood Diamond||Nominated|
See also edit
- Hounsou, Djimon (May 26, 2016). "Tonight at 9/8c on #foxtv #waywardpines". Instagram. Archived from the original on 2021-12-26.
- "Djimon Hounsou: Biography". TV Guide. Archived from the original on June 11, 2013. Retrieved November 22, 2012.
- Akyeampong, Emmanuel Kwaku; Gates, Henry Louis (February 2, 2012). Dictionary of African Biography. Vol. 1−6. Oxford University Press. p. 78. ISBN 9780195382075.
- "Daily Show". Comedy Central. Archived from the original on May 10, 2017. Retrieved May 10, 2017.
- Djimon Hounsou Biography - Yahoo! Movies Archived 2011-06-28 at the Wayback Machine
- "Straight Up". Paula-Abdul.net. Archived from the original on September 17, 2012. Retrieved November 15, 2012.
- "Love Will Never Do Without You". songfacts.com. Archived from the original on November 16, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2012.
- "Djimon Hounsou Awards". IMDb. Retrieved November 13, 2013.
- "Push Djimon Hounsou Interview". About.com. Archived from the original on November 13, 2013. Retrieved November 13, 2013.
- "Djimon Hounsou and Diane Kruger's SPECIAL FORCES Explodes onto Blu-ray & DVD in February". January 17, 2013. Archived from the original on November 13, 2013. Retrieved November 13, 2013.
- "Story talks black panther". ign.com. May 8, 2007. Archived from the original on September 26, 2015. Retrieved September 19, 2015.
- "Djimon Hounsou Roars as the Black Panther". Archived from the original on 2010-05-15. Retrieved 2008-11-12.
- "Legendary Pulls Plug on Bradley Cooper's 'Paradise Lost'". The Hollywood Reporter. 9 February 2012. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved September 19, 2015.
- "Alan Taylor Offers New 'Thor 2′ Details; Djimon Hounsou on 'Guardians of the Galaxy'". Screen Rant. Archived from the original on November 13, 2013. Retrieved November 13, 2013.
- "Marvel Studios Begins Production on Guardians of the Galaxy". Marvel.com. July 20, 2013. Archived from the original on July 24, 2013. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
- "Djimon Hounsou Joins Fast & Furious 7". empireonline.com. 12 September 2013. Archived from the original on 13 November 2013. Retrieved November 13, 2013.
- Wagmeister, Elizabeth (February 17, 2016). "Djimon Hounsou cast in 'Wayward Pines' season 2". Variety. Archived from the original on February 18, 2016. Retrieved February 18, 2016.
- [dead link]
- "Exclusive: DC's 'Shazam!' casts 'Guardians' actor Djimon Hounsou as the Wizard". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on 2018-07-10. Retrieved 2019-03-08.
- "Exclusive: 'Aquaman' reveals first look at the exotic Fisherman King". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on 2021-03-05. Retrieved 2019-03-08.
- Jirak, Jamie (July 23, 2021). "Shazam! Fury of the Gods Set Photo Reveals Return of Surprising Actor". ComicBook.com. Archived from the original on 2021-07-24. Retrieved July 24, 2021.
- "Djimon Hounsou to Appear in Black Adam". Streamr. July 26, 2021. Archived from the original on October 12, 2022. Retrieved October 9, 2022.
- ‘Gran Turismo’: Djimon Hounsou, Spice Girls’ Geri Halliwell-Horner Join Sony’s Racing Movie (Exclusive) The Hollywood Reporter. November 4, 2022
- "Omar Albertto on FASHION NET". www.fashion.net. Archived from the original on 2017-09-05. Retrieved 2018-02-09.
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- "Developed countries need to be held accountable". Rfi.fr. 2009-12-02. Archived from the original on 2012-10-11. Retrieved November 15, 2012.
- Lodge, Guy (12 March 2018). "Miami Film Review: 'In Search of Voodoo: Roots to Heaven'". Variety. Retrieved 21 October 2023.
- Thompson, Anne (20 March 2018). "Miami Moviegoers Reveal the Role of Art Houses for Latin American Audiences". IndieWire. Retrieved 21 October 2023.
- Sandoval, Shireen (9 March 2019). "Djimon Hounsou brings voodoo documentary to Miami Film Festival". WSVN. Retrieved 21 October 2023.
- Slonim, Jeffrey (November 15, 2012). "Russell Simmons Okay with Kimora & Djimon". People. Archived from the original on April 20, 2020. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
- "'Life in the Fab Lane' star Kimora Lee Simmons gives birth to baby boy". Reality TV World. June 1, 2009. Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
- "Kimora Lee Simmons, Djimon Hounsou Had Commitment Ceremony". Usmagazine.com. 2009-03-09. Archived from the original on 2010-06-09. Retrieved November 15, 2012.
- Jordan, Julie (November 21, 2012). "Kimora Lee Simmons and Djimon Hounsou Separate". People. Archived from the original on February 12, 2017. Retrieved March 11, 2012.
- Sharf, Zack (2022-02-09). "'Rebel Moon' First Look: Zack Snyder Debuts Concept Art From His 'Star Wars'-Inspired Netflix Epic". Variety. Archived from the original on 2022-02-09. Retrieved 2022-02-10.
- Jirak, Jamie (March 12, 2023). "A Quiet Place Prequel Confirms Part II Star is Returning". ComicBook. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
- Ridley Scott's Gladiator 2 enter production
- "Zack Snyder's Rebel Moon 2 Releases On Netflix Just 5 Months After First Movie". Screen Rant.
- Geisinger, Gabriella (8 June 2023). "Simu Liu, Woody Harrelson, Djimon Hounsou new movie Last Breath filming in Malta". KFTV.com.
- "Winners: National Board Of Review". CBS News. Archived from the original on October 19, 2015. Retrieved September 19, 2015.
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