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Sun, 07.30.1961

Laurence Fishburne, Actor for Stage, TV, and Screen born

Laurence Fishburne

Laurence Fishburne was born on this date 1961. He is a Black actor, playwright, screenwriter, director, and producer.

Born in Augusta, GA, he and his mother (a divorced teacher) moved the family to Brooklyn, NY, which he considers his hometown. Fishburne landed a regular role on "One Life to Live" when he was 10. His movie debut was in "Cornbread, Earl and Me" (1975). When he was 14, he began work on "Apocalypse Now" after lying about his age. For the next several years, he was offered only small roles. He eventually landed a part on "Pee-wee's Playhouse."

On the set, he met John Singleton, who later directed him in his breakthrough role as the father in "Boyz N the Hood" (1991). Before this, though, in 1988, he played a critically acclaimed character in an early Spike Lee film/musical, "School Daze." In 1992, Fishburne won a Tony for his role in August Wilson's play, "Two Trains Running."  In 1994, his performance as Ike Turner in "What's Love Got to Do with It" earned him an Oscar nomination. That same year his television appearance in the premiere episode of "Tribeca" awarded Fishburne an Emmy.

In 1995, he starred in "The Tuskegee Airmen," for which he received an NAACP Image Award, a Golden Globe, an Emmy, and Cable Ace nominations for Best Actor in a Mini-Series. In 1996, he starred in "Fled" and in the critically acclaimed film "Othello" in the title role. He was the first African American to play the Moorish king in a major screen release that follows a noble tradition of such actors as Sir Laurence Olivier and Orson Welles in the role.

In 1997, Fishburne received an Emmy nomination and an NAACP Image Award for his starring role in the HBO drama "Miss Evers' Boys," of which he was executive producer. "Miss Evers' Boys" was awarded five Emmys, including "Outstanding film made for Television Movie" and the President's Award, which honors a program that illuminates a social or educational issue.  He also starred in "Event Horizon" and "Hoodlum," which he produced. His other film appearances include "Searching For Bobby Fischer," "Cadence," "Just Cause," "Bad Company," "Deep Cover," and "Higher Learning," for which he also received an NAACP Image Award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture.

He has enjoyed a long and distinguished career in film, television, and theater and has worked on over 75 projects in all performance mediums.

Fishburne completed production on "The Matrix: Reloaded" and "The Matrix: Revolutions," the follow-up films to the 1999 "The Matrix." In 2003, Fishburne starred in Dreamworks' "Biker Boyz." He also completed the film "Mystic River," directed by Clint Eastwood.  He has also been part of the cast of television's "Blackish" comedy series.

A reviewer once wrote about Fishburne, "He takes a director's talents and gives them heroic size. He knows the power of taking your time. He knows the power of silence. He knows the power of concentration."

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