Jada Pinkett Smith is an American actress. In 1991, she made her first break with a role in the sitcom A Different World. She has also starred in major motion pictures, including The Nutty Professor with co-star Eddie Murphy, and Spike Lee’s highly controversial Bamboozled. Pinkett Smith is married to Will Smith, and is the mother of the performers Jaden and Willow Smith.
Actress Jada Pinkett was born on September 18, 1971, in Baltimore, Maryland. The daughter of a contractor Robsol, Jr. and nurse Adrienne Banfield, Pinkett attended the Baltimore School of the Arts as a teenager, where one of her classmates and friends was the late rap artist Tupac Shakur. This diminutive actress got her first big break in 1991, when she joined the cast of the Cosby Show spin-off sitcom A Different World.
Her film career took off with the 1993 movie Menace II Society, and led to starring roles in Jason’s Lyric (1994), Set it Off (1996), The Nutty Professor (1996), Scream 2 (1997) and Return to Paradise. Jada Pinkett Smith has also stepped behind the camera to direct music videos, and has designed a line of women’s clothing.
She also appeared in Spike Lee’s highly controversial Bamboozled (2000), a satire of racial bias in the television industry. In 2001, Pinkett Smith appeared with husband Will Smith in the heavily publicized biopic Ali, in which she played Mohammad Ali’s first wife, Sonji. Two years later, Pinkett Smith became known for her role as human rebel Niobe in the films The Matrix Reloaded (2003) and The Matrix Revolutions (2003). She also co-starred with Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle in the dramas Reign Over Me (2007) and The Women (2008) with Meg Ryan, Annette Bening, Eva Mendes and Debra Messing.
Pinkett Smith made her debut as a director and writer in the film the 2008 independent film The Human Contract.
Pinkett and box-office and recording star Will Smith were married on New Year’s Eve, 1997. Their son, Jaden Christopher Syre, was born in 1998. Their daughter, Willow Camille Reign, was born in October 2000.