Obba Babatundé is one of the busiest actors in Hollywood, juggling careers in film, television and stage.
Babatundé recently appeared in Paramount Pictures' The Manchurian Candidate, as well as the critically acclaimed film The Notebook, while continuing to star as the father on the UPN sitcom Half & Half, which began its fifth season this fall. Other recent projects include a scene-stealing role in the New Line feature film After the Sunset (2004), which opened November 12, 2004, opposite Pierce Brosnan. He next stars in the highly anticipated feature film The Celestine Prophecy, based on the top-selling book, which is scheduled for release in 2006.
He recently wrapped production on a co-starring role in the 'Martha Coolidge'-directed feature film comedy, Material Girls (2006), opposite Hilary Duff and Haylie Duff, which is also slated for a 2006 release. In March 2006, he filmed a recurring role in the pilot for the new HBO Studios' Untitled Kevin Brennan series for NBC.
Babatundé's acting portfolio includes the blockbuster motion pictures, John Q, Universal Pictures' How Hig, a memorable role as Lamar in That Thing You Do!, Philadelphia, The Silence of the Lambs, the role of Berry Gordy in The Temptations, and The Visit (2000) among others. The talented artist earned Emmy and Cable ACE Award nominations for his role as Willie Johnson in HBO's Miss Evers' Boys, and a NAACP Image Award nomination for his portrayal of Harold Nicholas in HBO's Introducing Dorothy Dandridge (1999). His additional television credits include the title role in the USA Network's film Redeemer (2002) and a role in the award-winning Showtime drama series Soul Food, portraying Kenny's father.
Babatundé's ability to live a part so flawlessly contributes to his memorable character portrayals. In the comedy How High, Babatundé gives a hilarious delivery as the Dean of Freshman at Harvard University. In John Q, he portrays the cool, unflappable SWAT team captain out to get his man. As the narrator and fellow convict to Eddie Murphy and Martin Lawrence's characters in the motion picture Life, Babatundé exhibited great diversity as his character aged forty years over the course of the picture.
While his film and television credits loom exemplary, Babatundé is no stranger to the stage. With multiple Broadway credits, he is probably best known for his Tony-nominated role as C.C. White in the original Broadway production of Dreamgirls. Other unforgettable stage performances include Harold Prince's Grind and he originated the role of the legendary jazz artist 'Ferdinand 'Jelly Roll' Morton' in the world premiere of Jelly's Last Jam. In the summer of 2005, Obba toured Japan, starring as Billy Flynn in Chicago, reprising the role he performed in the original tour of the classic musical. The show ran four weeks in Tokyo and one week in Osaka. In early January 2006, he was asked to return for a week of special engagements and also performed select dates on the U.S. National Tour in February. He is currently scheduled to return to Broadway on April 17, 2006, for a four-month starring run as "Billy Flynn" at the legendary Ambassador Theatre.
In addition to his mentorship program, Babatundé enjoys doing his seminar "show-BUSINESS' at universities throughout the country.
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