Denzel Washington is an American actor, director and producer. Let’s see some amazing facts and trivia about him!
1.His full name is Denzel Hayes Washington Jr.
2.He was born December 28, 1954
3. He has received three Golden Globe awards, a Tony Award, and two Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actor for the historical war drama film Glory (1989) and Best Actor for his role as a corrupt cop in the crime thriller Training Day (2001).
4. Denzel Washington has received much critical acclaim for his film work since the 1980s, including his portrayals of real-life figures such as South African anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko in Cry Freedom (1987), Muslim minister and human rights activist Malcolm X in Malcolm X (1992), boxer Rubin “Hurricane” Carter in The Hurricane (1999), football coach Herman Boone in Remember the Titans (2000), poet and educator Melvin B. Tolson in The Great Debaters (2007), and drug kingpin Frank Lucas in American Gangster (2007).
5. He has been a featured actor in the films produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and has been a frequent collaborator of directors Spike Lee, Antoine Fuqua and the late Tony Scott.
6. In 2016, Washington was selected as the recipient for the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award at the 73rd Golden Globe Awards.
7. In 2002, Washington made his directorial debut with biographical film Antwone Fisher.
8. His second directorial effort was The Great Debaters, released in 2007. Washington’s third directorial effort, Fences, starring himself and Viola Davis, was released on December 16, 2016
9. Denzel Washington was born in Mount Vernon, New York.
10. His father, Denzel Hayes Washington, Sr., a native of Buckingham County, Virginia, was an ordained Pentecostal minister, and also worked for the New York City Water Department and at a local department store, S. Klein.
11. His mother, Lennis “Lynne” (née Lowe), was a beauty parlor owner and operator born in Georgia and partly raised in Harlem.
12. Washington attended Pennington-Grimes Elementary School in Mount Vernon until 1968.
13. When he was 14, his parents divorced, and his mother sent him to a private preparatory school, Oakland Military Academy in New Windsor, New York.
14. After Oakland, Washington next attended Mainland High School, a public high school in Daytona Beach, Florida, from 1970 to 1971.
15. He was interested in attending Texas Tech University: “I grew up in the Boys Club in Mount Vernon, and we were the Red Raiders.
16. So when I was in high school, I wanted to go to Texas Tech in Lubbock just because they were called the Red Raiders and their uniforms looked like ours.
17. Washington earned a B.A. in Drama and Journalism from Fordham University in 1977.
18. At Fordham, he played collegiate basketball as a guard under coach P.J. Carlesimo.
19. After a period of indecision on which major to study and taking a semester off, Washington worked as creative arts director at an overnight summer camp, Camp Sloane YMCA in Lakeville, Connecticut.
20. He participated in a staff talent show for the campers and a colleague suggested he try acting.
21. Returning to Fordham that fall with a renewed purpose, Washington enrolled at the Lincoln Center campus to study acting, and where he was given the title roles in Eugene O’Neill’s The Emperor Jones and Shakespeare’s Othello.
22. He then attended graduate school at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, where he stayed for one year before returning to New York to begin a professional acting career.
23. Washington spent the summer of 1976 in St. Mary’s City, Maryland, in summer stock theater performing Wings of the Morning, the Maryland State play, which was written for him by incorporating an African-American character/narrator based loosely on the historical figure from early colonial Maryland, Mathias Da Sousa.
24. Shortly after graduating from Fordham, Washington made his screen acting debut in the 1977 made-for-television film Wilma, and his first Hollywood appearance in the 1981 film Carbon Copy.
25. He shared a 1982 Distinguished Ensemble Performance Obie Award for playing Private First Class Melvin Peterson in the Off-Broadway Negro Ensemble Company production A Soldier’s Play which premiered November 20, 1981
26. A major career break came when Washington starred as Dr. Phillip Chandler in NBC’s television hospital drama St. Elsewhere, which ran from 1982 to 1988.
27. He was one of only a few African-American actors to appear on the series for its entire six-year run.
28. He also appeared in several television, motion picture and stage roles, such as the films A Soldier’s Story (1984), Hard Lessons (1986) and Power (1986)
29. In 1987, he starred as South African anti-apartheid political activist Steven Biko in Richard Attenborough’s Cry Freedom, for which he received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
30. In 1989, Washington won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of a defiant, self-possessed ex-slave soldier in the film Glory.
31. That same year, he appeared in the film The Mighty Quinn; and in For Queen and Country, where he played the conflicted and disillusioned Reuben James, a British soldier who, despite a distinguished military career, returns to a civilian life where racism and inner city life lead to vigilantism and violence.
32. On June 25, 1983, Washington married Pauletta Pearson, whom he met on the set of his first screen work, the television film Wilma.
33. The couple have four children: John David (b. July 28, 1984), a former football player with the United Football League’s Sacramento Mountain Lions (and before that, college football at Morehouse); Katia (b. November 27, 1986) who graduated from Yale University with a Bachelor of Arts in 2010; and twins Olivia and Malcolm (b. April 10, 1991)
34. Malcolm graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in film studies, and Olivia played a role in Lee Daniels’s film The Butler.
35. In 1995, Denzel and Pauletta renewed their wedding vows in South Africa with Archbishop Desmond Tutu officiating.
36. Denzel Washington is a devout Christian, and has considered becoming a preacher.
37. In 1995, he donated US$2.5 million to help build the new West Angeles Church of God in Christ facility in Los Angeles.
38. Washington says he reads the Bible daily.
39. Washington has served as the national spokesperson for Boys & Girls Clubs of America since 1993 and has appeared in public service announcements and awareness campaigns for the organization.
40. In addition, he has served as a board member for Boys & Girls Clubs of America since 1995
41. Due to his philanthropic work with the Boys & Girls Club, PS 17X, a New York City Elementary School decided to officially name their school after Washington.
42. In mid-2004, Washington visited Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC) at Fort Sam Houston, where he participated in a Purple Heart ceremony, presenting medals to three Army soldiers recovering from wounds they received while stationed in Iraq.
43. He also visited the fort’s Fisher House facilities, and after learning that it had exceeded its capacity, made a substantial donation to the Fisher House Foundation.
44. Washington’s other charitable contributions include US$1 million to Nelson Mandela’s Children’s Fund in 1995 and US$1 million to Wiley College to resuscitate the college’s debate team.
45. Denzel Washington is an Independent voter. He supported Barack Obama in 2008.
46. Dnezl Washington has been a big fan of the Dallas Cowboys and Los Angeles Lakers since childhood.
47. The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia named Washington as one of three people (the others being directors Oliver Stone and Michael Moore) with whom they were willing to negotiate for the release of three defense contractors the group had held captive from 2003 to 2008.
48. On May 18, 1991, Washington was awarded an honorary doctorate from his alma mater, Fordham University, for having “impressively succeeded in exploring the edge of his multifaceted talent”.[
49. In 2011, he donated $2 million to Fordham for an endowed chair of the theater department, as well as US$250,000 to establish a theater-specific scholarship at the school.
50. He also received an honorary Doctorate of Humanities from Morehouse College on May 20, 2007. and an honorary Doctor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania on May 16, 2011.
51. In 2008, Washington visited Israel with a delegation of African-American artists in honor of the state’s 60th birthday.
52. In April 2014, Washington presented at Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS Easter Bonnet Competition with Bryan Cranston, Idina Menzel and Fran Drescher, after raising donations at his Broadway show A Raisin in the Sun