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Oct 23rd

A more perfect union

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Born in Omaha, Nebraska on October 29, 1972, Gabrielle Monique Union was more of an athlete than an actress during her formative years, going on to play point guard on her high school's basketball team and soccer for the University of Nebraska. Ironically, when she set her sights on showbiz, the 5'7" beauty found her breakout role as a cheerleader in Bring It On.
Gabrielle Union, Katt Williams and Charlie Murphy in Yari Film Group's The Perfect Holiday

Born in Omaha, Nebraska on October 29, 1972, Gabrielle Monique Union was more of an athlete than an actress during her formative years, going on to play point guard on her high school's basketball team and soccer for the University of Nebraska. Ironically, when she set her sights on showbiz, the 5'7" beauty found her breakout role as a cheerleader in Bring It On.

On her way up the ladder to superstardom, she got her start in teensploits like She's All That and 10 Things I Hate about You. But after Bring It On, she became a staple of urban-oriented fare such as Two Can Play That Game and The Brothers, and landed the lead role in Deliver Us from Eva.

Since then, Gabrielle has made the transition to summer blockbusters, co-starring opposite Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in Bad Boys II and opposite Cedric the Entertainer in The Honeymooners. Earlier this year, she handled the lead role in Tyler Perry's Daddy's Little Girls opposite Idris Elba. And now she's appearing in a film for the fourth time with Morris Chestnut inThe Perfect Holiday.

As for her personal life, Gabrielle's divorce from retired football star Chris Howard of the Jacksonville Jaguars was finalized in 2006.

KW: Hi Gabrielle, thanks for the time.
GU: No problem.

KW: I loved your performance in The Perfect Holiday. What made you decide to play Nancy?
GU: You know, I generally don't play women with children. I think I've only done it one other time. But seeing what my sister and what my girlfriend go through raising three kids, it was a role I definitely had an interest in exploring. And when Latifah and Shakim [producers Queen Latifah and Shakim Compere] came to me, I was like, "Let me give it a go. The worst that could happen is that I try and it doesn't work out." I definitely gave it my best.

KW: Didn't you just play a mother in Daddy's Little Girls?
GU: No, they weren't my children.

KW: That's right. Those were Idris' kids. Well, how was it working with Morris again? You two have such a natural chemistry.
GU: Every time we work together, it's like putting on a pair of old comfy jeans, or your favorite pair of shoes that you've had since high school that never failed. He's just so easy to work with in this day and age where everybody wants to be a diva or a divo. He's so not that. He's so humble and has no clue that he's one of the best looking people on the planet. He's just so easygoing that whenever they give me a chance to say who I want to work with, I pick Morris as often as I can.

KW: How was it having so many other big names in the cast? Queen Latifah, Terrence Howard, Charlie Murphy, Katt Williams, Faizon Love, etcetera?
GU: What's great about the African-American entertainment community is that you're kind of around for so much of people's careers. So, I've known everyone in this movie for years. I've known Katt since he was just doing standup, and now he's Katt Williams! The same with Charlie and Faizon, and Latifah and Terrence. They're just my friends. I never think of them as more than that, but the cast is very impressive. It's a great community of people who got to come together.

KW: So, the Black acting community is kind of small.
GU: Very small. You know everybody. It's kind of the same with musicians. It's a very small world. It doesn't matter what city you're in, everyone is kind of in the same place. So, you see people literally from when they're starting out and asking you for tips to when they blossom into some of the hugest stars we have today. And it's a great feeling to
 

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