Hollywood Spotlight: Halle Berry

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Halle Berry’s stunning beauty and warm smile easily captivates audiences. But her acting skill still reigns supreme. From comedy to drama to action, this talented celebrity has proven her versatility. For that reason, we shine our Hollywood Spotlight in her direction. (Image Credit: Janice Ogata / PRPhotos.com)

Starting in Hollywood

Like many actors and actresses beginning their career, many of Halle Berry’s first jobs were on television. In fact, one of her first roles was as a recurring character on Knots Landing in 1991. But her skill and beauty first caught attention of audiences in Queen (1993). 

The drama mini-series, based upon Alex Haley’s historical novel Queen: The Story of an American Family, was a partially factual accounting of his grandmother’s life as the child of a slave and her slave owner.  The mini-series performed admirably in ratings and earned an Emmy Award nomination. It also put Halle Berry on the Hollywood map.

Becoming a Mutant

In 2000, Halle Berry joined a movie franchise that is still going strong today. X-Men was the first installment of the series. The film introduced audiences to the powerful band of Marvel’s mutants played by an ensemble cast of Hollywood heavy-hitters like Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen and Hugh Jackman. Halle Berry became Storm, a powerful mutant who could control the weather. 

The film was a box-office success. Not only did it receive positive reviews from critics, it was also one of the top-grossing movies of the year. X-Men is also credited with bringing about the resurgence of superhero movies we are still experiencing in 2019. 

Halle Berry reprised her role again in X2: X-Men United (2003) and X-Men: The Last Stand (2006). Again, both movies were significant successes in the box office. Unfortunately, X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014) was the last movie to include the character of Storm. While there are other Marvel movies currently planned for release over the next few years, there is no indication her character will be a part of the films. 

Making Hollywood History

Just two years later, in 2002, Halle Berry won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her portrayal of a widow of an executed man in Monster’s Ball. While the win was significant for the star as it was her first Oscar, she also made history. First, she was only the seventh African-American woman to be nominated for an Academy Award in a leading role. But more significantly, she was the first to win! And, while others have earned a nomination since, to date, Halle Berry is the only African-American woman to have won the award.

Ironically, just a few years previous, in 1999, Halle Berry starred as Dorothy Dandridge in Introducing Dorothy Dandridge. In 1954, Dorothy Dandridge became the first African-American woman to ever be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in the movie Carmen Jones. 

The Quintessential Bond Girl

The James Bond franchise is synonymous with beautiful women. And Halle Berry surely kept the tradition alive with her turn in Die Another Day (2002). Cast opposite the James Bond actor of the time, Pierce Brosnan, Halle Berry played Jinx Johnson. In the film, the two reenacted an iconic scene from Dr. No (1962) in which Halle Berry emerged from the ocean in a bikini with a knife strapped to her hip. Not only did the reimagining of the scene exude the sexiness expected in a Bond film, it showed off the high level of physical fitness Halle Berry achieved for the role. In fact, even today, her physique in that orange bikini inspires countless workout regimes!

Some of Halle Berry’s other notable movies include: The Flintstones (1994), Why Do Fools Fall in Love? (1998), X2: X-Men United (2003), Gothika (2003), Catwoman (2004), X-Men: The Last Stand (2006), Frankie & Alice (2010), New Year’s Eve (2011), Dark Tide (2012), Cloud Atlas (2012), The Call (2013), and Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017) and John Wick (2019).

A Noble Cause

In addition to her busy schedule as an actress and a mom of two, Halle Berry never fails to make time for a charity that is near and dear to her heart. For nearly 20 years, the star has been an ambassador for the Jenesse Center in Los Angeles. This non-profit organization supports victims of domestic abuse and violence. This cause is a passion project for Halle Berry. Domestic violence immensely impacted her childhood as she remembers her father physically abusing her mother on many more than one occasion. Today, the star not only donates her own money to Jenesse Center, she freely gives her time and actively fundraises for the organization. 

What’s Next?

This talented celebrity has a couple of projects in the pipeline. Bruised, a movie about a retired MMA fighter struggling to be a good mother, is getting under way. Notably, not only will Halle Berry be starring in the film, she is also making her directorial debut! 

It was also just announced that the star will be working on Jagged Edge as well. The remake of the 1985 Glenn Close/Jeff Bridges movie focuses on a lawyer who unexpectedly falls for her client who just happens to be accused of his wife’s murder. No word yet on who is to costar. 

But there is no need to wait that long if you are a fan of Halle Berry! Her newest movie, John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum is out in theaters right now! Prepare for some excitement!

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