Gabrielle Union

Real Name : Gabrielle Monique Union

Born: 29/10/1972 (50 yo)
Birth place: Omaha, Nebraska (USA)

Citizenship : USA

Occupation : Actress , Former Model


Gabrielle Monique Union is an American actress and former model. Among her notable roles is as the cheerleader opposite Kirsten Dunst in the film Bring It On. Union starred opposite Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in the blockbuster film Bad Boys II and played a medical doctor in the CBS drama series City of Angels. She starred with LL Cool J in Deliver Us from Eva in 2003.


Union was born in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1972, the middle child in a family of four daughters. She is the daughter of Theresa (née Glass), a former dancer, social worker, and phone company manager, and Sylvester C. Union, an AT&T manager and military sergeant. Union's early childhood years were spent as part of a rich African American community. Her large family had been in the Omaha area for many generations. She was raised Catholic. When Union was eight years old, she and her family moved to Pleasanton, California, where she grew up and attended Foothill High School. In high school, Union was an all-star point guard in basketball and a year-round athlete, also playing in soccer and ran track.


Union attended the University of Nebraska before moving on to Cuesta College. She eventually transferred to UCLA and earned a degree in sociology. While studying there, she interned at the Judith Fontaine Modeling & Talent Agency to earn extra academic credits. Invited by the agency's owner, Judith Fontaine, Union started working as a model to pay off college loans.

Union started her acting career in minor roles. Most were in teen movies such as 10 Things I Hate About You and Love and Basketball. In 1997, Union appeared in the sixth-season episode of "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine – Sons and Daughters" as the Klingon N'Garen.[6] She also appeared in Sister, Sister as Vanessa, in Smart Guy as Denise, and in five episodes of 7th Heaven as Keesha Hamilton.

In 2000, Union landed the role of Isis in the cheerleading movie Bring it On opposite Kirsten Dunst. Bring It On helped push Union into the mainstream and she began gaining more exposure. This led to Union being cast in the CBS television drama City of Angels as Dr. Courtney Ellis.

Union was cast in her first leading role in the 2003 film Deliver Us from Eva with rapper L.L. Cool J. This was her second time working with the rapper since making a cameo in his video "Paradise" in 2002. The film received fair reviews from critics and it showed that Union was a leading lady. Union landed the role of Will Smith's character's girlfriend Syd in the film Bad Boys II, a box office success grossing over $273 million worldwide. Union starred with Academy Award winner Jamie Foxx in the film Breakin' All the Rules in 2004.

Union starred in the short-lived 2005 ABC series Night Stalker. She has also starred in the independent drama films Neo Ned and Constellation, the latter of which was released to theaters. She won an award for Best Actress in Neo Ned at the Palm Beach International Film Festival, and the film received awards at several festivals.

She starred in the 2005 remake of The Honeymooners with comedian Cedric The Entertainer. In 2006, she starred as Busta Rhymes' love interest in the music video for Rhymes' "I Love My Chick". Union starred in the 2007 films Daddy's Little Girls by Tyler Perry (released on Valentine's Day) and the Christmas film The Perfect Holiday which opened on December 12.

In an interview with Art Nouveau Magazine, Union complained about the lack of roles for black actresses and actors in Hollywood: "There used to be [roles] specifically written black, if you knew Denzel was doing a movie you knew his wife, girl or love interest was going to be black [but] that’s not necessarily the case anymore. You’re in that room with every amazingly talented actress of every hue, and it’s a dogfight, it’s hard".

In 2008, Union appeared on Ugly Betty for 3 episodes (36–38) as Renee, Wilhelmina Slater's (Vanessa L. Williams) sister and Daniel Meade's (Eric Mabius) love interest. She also made a cameo appearance in the music video for Ne-Yo's "Miss Independent".

She joined the cast of the U.S. television series Life on NBC and appeared in four episodes prior to the cancellation of series in May 2009. She appeared in the ABC series FlashForward alongside John Cho and Joseph Fiennes as Zoey Andata, a role for which she got nominated for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. In 2013, Union starred in Ava DuVernay's short film The Door as part of Miu Miu's Women's Tales campaign.

Current and upcoming projects

In 2012, she worked with Tyler Perry on the romantic comedy Good Deeds playing the role of Natalie, the soon to be wife of Perry's character Wesley Deeds. She now appears in Steve Harvey's movie Think Like A Man, another romantic comedy which is based on his book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man. The movie debuted at No. 1 during the weekend of April 20, 2012. In 2013, she began as the star of the BET network show Being Mary Jane.

In 2012, Union was featured in the documentary Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide premiering on PBS October 1 and 2. The series profiles women and girls, along with the organizations that support them, from developing countries who suffer from atrocities, including rape, human sex trafficking and female genital mutilation, and how they deal with these challenges. The Half the Sky PBS TV series is produced by Show of Force along with Fugitive Films.

Personal life

In 1992, at age 19, Union was attacked and raped at her part-time job in a shoe store. Her attacker later turned himself in and was sentenced to 33 years in prison. She has since become an advocate for survivors of assault. Union is an Ambassador in Susan G. Komen for the Cure's Circle of Promise. She ran in the Global Race for the Cure in Washington D.C. on Saturday, June 2, 2012, in honor of her late friend Kristen Martinez, who lost her battle with breast cancer.

On May 5, 2001, Union married football player Chris Howard; they divorced in 2006. Since 2007 she has been in a relationship with NBA basketball player Dwyane Wade.



  • 1999      She's All That
  • 1999      10 Things I Hate About You
  • 1999      H-E Double Hockey Sticks
  • 2000      Love & Basketball
  • 2000      Bring It On
  • 2001      The Brothers
  • 2001      Two Can Play That Game
  • 2002      Welcome to Collinwood
  • 2002      Abandon
  • 2003      Deliver Us from Eva
  • 2003      Cradle 2 the Grave
  • 2003      Bad Boys II
  • 2004      Something the Lord Made
  • 2004      Breakin' All the Rules
  • 2005      Neo Ned
  • 2005      The Honeymooners
  • 2005      Say Uncle
  • 2006      Running with Scissors
  • 2007      Constellation
  • 2007      Daddy's Little Girls
  • 2007      The Box
  • 2007      The Perfect Holiday
  • 2008      Meet Dave
  • 2008      Cadillac Records
  • 2010      The Van Zandt Shakedown
  • 2012      Good Deeds
  • 2012      Think Like a Man
  • 2012      In Our Nature
  • 2013      Miss Dial
  • 2013      Being Mary Jane
  • 2014      Think Like a Man Too


Awards won:



  • 2001 - Black Reel Awards - Best Supporting Actress for “Bring It On”
  • 2006 - Palm Beach International Film Festival - Best Actress for “Neo Ned”
  • 2009- Black Reel Awards - Best Ensemble for “Cadillac Records” 

Series and TV movies:

  • 1993      Family Matters
  • 1995/96 Saved by the Bell: The New Class
  • 1996      Moesha
  • 1996      Malibu Shores
  • 1996      Goode Behavior
  • 1996–99 7th Heaven
  • 1997      Smart Guy
  • 1997      Dave's World
  • 1997      Hitz
  • 1997      Sister, Sister
  • 1997      City Guys
  • 1997      Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
  • 1998      The Steve Harvey Show
  • 1998/99  Clueless
  • 1999      Grown Ups
  • 1999      H-E Double Hockey Sticks
  • 2000      ER
  • 2000      The Others
  • 2000      Zoe, Duncan, Jack & Jane
  • 2000      City of Angels
  • 2001      Close to Home
  • 2001      Friends
  • 2003      The Proud Family
  • 2004      The West Wing
  • 2004      Something the Lord Made
  • 2005      Family Guy
  • 2005–06 Night Stalker
  • 2007      Football Wives
  • 2008      Ugly Betty
  • 2009      Life
  • 2010      The BET Honors
  • 2009–10 FlashForward
  • 2010      Army Wives
  • 2011      NTSF:SD:SUV
  • 2012      Half the Sky
  • 2013      Being Mary Jane