Edit
Cuba Gooding Jr. Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (2) | Trivia (22) | Personal Quotes (5) | Salary (9)

Overview (3)

Date of Birth 2 January 1968The Bronx, New York City, New York, USA
Birth NameCuba M. Gooding Junior
Height 5' 10" (1.78 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Cuba Gooding Jr. was born on January 2, 1968, in The Bronx, New York. His mother, Shirley (Sullivan), was a backup singer for The Sweethearts. His father, Cuba Gooding, was the lead vocalist for the R&B group The Main Ingredient, which had a hit with the song "Everybody Plays The Fool". His paternal grandfather was from Barbados.

Cuba's father moved the family to Los Angeles in 1972, only to leave them a few years later. Despite this setback, Cuba was able to maintain a positive outlook and overachieved throughout school. He attended four different high schools and was elected class president in three of them. While at high school, Cuba met and fell in love with Sara Kapfer, whom he later lived with for seven years before tying the knot in March 1994.

Following high school, Cuba studied Japanese martial arts for three years before turning his focus toward acting. Early on, he landed guest starring roles on shows like Hill Street Blues (1981) and MacGyver (1985). His first major role was in the 1991 box office surprise Boyz n the Hood (1991). He followed this success with supporting roles in major films like A Few Good Men (1992), Lightning Jack (1994) and Outbreak (1995).

In 1996, Cuba was cast as an arrogant but loyal football player in the Tom Cruise-Cameron Crowe film Jerry Maguire (1996). The film became a huge box office smash and earned Cuba an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. His "Show Me The Money" line in the movie became a nationwide catchphrase. The role elevated him to superstar status, as many of Hollywood's top producers began to "show him the money" to appear in their films.

Since Jerry Maguire (1996), Cuba has managed to keep busy with a wide range of roles alongside many of Hollywood's biggest stars. Most recently, he won critical support for his portrayal of a mentally handicapped man in the heartwarming film Radio (2003), another movie about football. In 2002, he was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

He resides in Studio City, California.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Ice Cuba

Spouse (1)

Sara Kapfer (13 March 1994 - present) (filed for divorce) (3 children)

Trade Mark (2)

Often plays serious and soft-spoken characters
Soft, creaky voice

Trivia (22)

Listed as one of twelve "Promising New Actors of 1991" in John Willis' Screen World, Vol. 43.
Older brother of Omar Gooding.
Chosen by "People" magazine as one of the 50 most beautiful people in the world.
Break danced in the 1984 closing ceremonies of the Olympic Games in Los Angeles
Son of Cuba Gooding, lead singer of The Main Ingredient singing group ("Everybody Plays The Fool").
Suggested by Roger Moore to replace Pierce Brosnan as James Bond.
He was a non-celebrity contestant on The All-New Dating Game (1986) (approx 1986) He was contestant #1. The woman passed him up and chose contestant #2.
Was a backup dancer for Paula Abdul.
He played a role in the MacGyver (1985) episode, MacGyver: The Coltons (1991), which was the pilot to a series about the Colton Brothers. However, the pilot did not sell and so the series never was produced.
Sons: Spencer Gooding, born in 1994, and Mason Gooding, born in 1996.
Was discovered by eccentric Hollywood agent, Coralie Jr., for his break-dancing talent. He thanked Coralie in his acceptance speech when he received the academy award for his best supporting role in Jerry Maguire (1996).
Attended John F. Kennedy High School in Granada Hills his junior year. There, he joined the drama club, stage crew and ran cross country. That year, 1986, he appeared in the California Shakespeare Festival where he won first place in his portrayal of "Othello".
He and his wife welcomed their third child, a daughter, in Fall 2005. Her name is Piper and no other details have been released.
Occasionally plays a member of the armed forces or law enforcement. He played "Petty Officer Doris Miller" in Pearl Harbor (2001), "Senior Chief Carl Brashear" in Men of Honor (2000), "Corporal Carl Hammaker" in A Few Good Men (1992) and "Officer Alvarez" in Judgement (1992).
Turned down the leading role of Cinque in Amistad (1997).
He and his wife Sara were high school sweethearts.
Is an avid hockey player and has a rink in his back yard.
His father, Cuba Gooding, is a Goodwill Ambassador to Rosarito, Baja California, Mexico. On Dec. 5. 2009, he received a "key" to the city from Mayor Torres.
Enjoys vacations in Hawaii with his family and goes there often.
Lives in Pacific Palisades and Porter Ranch, California.
Born in the Bronx but raised in Los Angeles, his parents once managed the Apollo Theatre in New York.
Cuba Gooding Jr. is in Ottawa filming Sacrifice (2011) , a $6.8-million drama that also stars actor Christian Slater. [April 2010]

Personal Quotes (5)

I have never made a decision based on race and never will. I am admiring of my fellow peers, black filmmakers and black actors and actresses. When [Halle Berry] and [Denzel Washington] won Oscars, I felt pride because I was black, but never did I analyze their win based on color.
[on his final audition for Jerry Maguire (1996)] I came in there and did everything I had to do and the rest was history. So it was never like me sitting going, "Ah, there's Tom!" [Tom Cruise] To me, it was like that son of a bitch was holding me back from doing what I had to do.
[on his most embarrassing moment] That Oscar win, when I jumped around that damned stage!
Steven Spielberg came to me and said, 'I want you to be in Amistad (1997) and I said, 'It's a slave role; show me the money. I'm so a big thing,' and he goes, 'I can direct you.' and I said, 'No, I have to pass.' To me, at the time, I remember this interview I read (with) Christopher Reeve talking about Superman. What other role could live up to being Superman; he was Superman. I bought into that. People were telling me (of Jerry Maguire (1996)), 'You're black, it's a comedy role, you're not gonna win this thing.' So, when I won it, it was like I had all these things in my life - 'This is what you are, this is what you've become... Now represent that. I have arrived and now I have to live up to this thing.' (I didn't know) the next day I should have rolled up my sleeves and said, 'OK, now let's continue on this journey.' Creatively, I stopped myself.
[on his biggest disappointment] I wanted to meet Quentin Tarantino for Django Unchained (2012) but he had Jamie Foxx in mind - that one hurt.

Salary (9)

Boyz n the Hood (1991) $32,000
Gladiator (1992) $100,000
Lightning Jack (1994) $500,000
Outbreak (1995) $400,000
Jerry Maguire (1996) $600,000
As Good as It Gets (1997) $250,000
What Dreams May Come (1998) $1,500,000
Instinct (1999) $2,500,000
Men of Honor (2000) $1,500,000

See also

Other Works | Publicity Listings | Official Sites | Contact Info

Contribute to This Page