The Benin-born star Djimon Hounsou is a multi-talented American actor, dancer, and model. He is best known for his appearance in blockbuster movies such as Guardians of the Galaxy, Gladiator, and Furious 7 just to mention a few. He made his acting debut in 1990, appearing in the movie Without You I’m Nothing. Hounson came into the limelight in 1997 after portraying Joseph Cinque in the movie titled Amistad.
Djimon Hounsou has gained worldwide recognition since the inception of his career and has received several awards for his outstanding performances. He is a two-time winner of the Black Reel Awards, three-time NAACP Image Awards winner, and a one-time winner of the Independent Spirit Awards. Additionally, he has been nominated for Academy Awards and Golden Globe Awards among others.
Djimon Hounsou’s Bio
Born as Djimon Gatson Hounsou in Cotonou, the Benin Republic on April 24, 1964, he spent his early years in Benin before migrating to France with his brother Edmond when he was twelve. While in France, Djimon became a high school dropout and was homeless for some time. His life began to change when he met a photographer who later introduced him to a fashion designer named Thierry Mugler. As of 1987, Djimon has established himself as a model, working with notable modeling agencies and appearing in different adverts.
His Acting Career
Following his undeniable passion for acting, Djimon moved to the United States to pursue his acting career in 1990. He made his first film appearance in the movie titled Without You I’m Nothing and later on, he played minor roles in TV series 90210, ER, and Beverly Hills. He earned his first major role in the 1994 movie titled Stargate.
Djimon Hounsou got his breakthrough in 1997, appearing as Joseph Cinque in Steven Spielberg‘s film titled Amistad. The movie got positive reviews, thus, bringing Djimon to the limelight and he was also nominated for a Golden Globe Award following his brilliant performance. In 2000, Djimon portrayed the character of Juba in the blockbuster movie titled Gladiator. Three years later, he played a remarkable role in the movie titled In American, after which he was nominated for an Academy Award in 2004.
Alongside Paula Patton, Djimon starred in the 2013 movie titled Baggage Claim. The following year, he was cast in Guardian’s of the Galaxy and How to Train Your Dragon. He portrayed Mose Jakande appearing alongside Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Vin Diesel, and Ludacris in the 2015 thriller Furious 7. He also played Chief Mbonga in The Legend of Tarzan in 2016, as well as, King Arthur: The Legend of the Sword.
His other movies include Same Kind, The Tempest, Blazing Samurai, Captain Marvel, and Serenity. Asides from movies, Djimon has appeared on music videos including Janet Jackson‘s Love Will Never Do and Madonna‘s Express Yourself. Others are En Vogue’s Hold On and Paula Abdul’s music video for Straight Up.
Net Worth: How Much is Djimon Hounsou Worth?
The renowned actor’s got an inspiring story, moving from grass to grace. He has amassed a lot of wealth since the inception of his career and is currently living a lavish lifestyle. Djimon currently has a net worth of $12 million. He earned his net worth from his acting career and modeling gigs. Djimon has appeared on different adverts including ESPN’s series titled 32 Teams, 1 Dream. He has signed lucrative endorsement deals with popular brands such as Calvin Klien.
Is he Married? Who are His Wife and Son?
As the popular saying goes, “black is beautiful,” Djimon Hounsou isn’t just handsome, he has an attractive personality. He has been in a relationship with Kimora Lee Simmons, a gorgeous American fashion designer, actress, and model. Born as Kimora Lee Perkins to a Korean mother, Lee was adopted and raised in the United States by a US serviceman named Vernon Whitlock Jr. Having an incredible height of 5 feet 10 inches, Lee started modeling when she was fourteen years old. She has worked with top-notch fashion designers including Valentino, Karl Lagerfeld, Fendi, Yves Saint Laurent and Emanuel Ungaro. Lee also made an appearance as a judge on the show America’s Next Top Model: Cycle 1, as well as, Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane and Kimora: House of Fab. She played minor roles in television films such as Waist Deep, Brown Sugar and Beauty Shop among others.
Djimon and Lee began their relationship in 2007 and in the summer of 2008, the couple had a traditional commitment ceremony in his home country Benin. The following year, they welcomed their first child, a son named Kenzo Lee Hounsou. Due to series of unresolved issues, the pair went their separate ways in 2012. They were never legally married in the United States. After their split, the duo has continued to be good friends as well as parents to their son.
Prior to Lee’s relationship with Djimon, she was previously married to Russell Simmons with whom she had two daughters named Ming Lee Simmons and Aoki Lee Simmons. The couple got married in 1998 and went their separate ways in March 2006. However, there’s no news of Djimon’s subsequent relationships, but Lee went on to marry Tim Leissner in February 2014. Together they have a son named Wolfe Lee Leissner, born in April 2015.
Other Interesting Facts about Djimon Hounsou
1. Djimon was born in the Benin Republic, he holds Beninese and American nationality.
2. He started his acting career in 1990 and in 2004, he became the fourth black man to receive an Academy Award nomination.
3. He was previously in a relationship with American model Kimora Lee Simmons. The duo got hitched traditionally in Benin but was not legally married in the United States.
4. He has a son Kenzo Lee Hounsou, born on May 30, 2009.
5. Djimon is very tall standing at 6 feet 4 inches and weighs 90 kg.
6. Djimon Hounsou has a whopping net worth of $12 million.