Birth Name: Nitara Carlynn Long
Birth Date: October 30, 1970
Birth Place: Brooklyn, New York, USA
Height: 5' 2"
Quote: "I think you have to let a man be a man. If you choose a real man he isn't going to let you fall. He'll be there for you."
Born October 30, 1970, in Brooklyn, New York, Nia Long showed an interest in acting at an early age. Nia, whose name comes from one of the seven days of Kwanzaa and means "life purpose," was instructed by Betty Bridges, better known as the mother of Diff'rent Strokes child star Todd Bridges.
Nia's acting career began on television in 1991, with a role on the soap opera Guiding Light which lasted for two years. In addition to daytime roles, Long appeared on primetime television in sitcoms such as 227, Silver Spoons and My Two Dads. While on Guiding Light, Nia had her big screen debut in 1990's Buried Alive. One year later, she landed a role in Boyz N the Hood, John Singleton's powerful drama also starring Cuba Gooding Jr. and Laurence Fishburne. Although Boyz N the Hood received critical acclaim, it was Nia's 2-year role as Will Smith's girlfriend and fiancée on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air that gained her recognition.
Working with Will Smith again, Nia was cast in 1993's Made in America. In 1995, continuing in her tradition of comedic roles, Nia appeared in the film Friday, where she shared the big screen with Ice Cube and Chris Tucker. As for additional television appearances, Nia had guest roles on Living Single, ER, and Brandy's Moesha.
Her breakthrough role arrived in 1997 as the lead female in Love Jones. That same year, Nia had a role in Soul Food, co-starring Vanessa Williams and Vivica A. Fox, as well as in The Best Man in 1999, for which she won an Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture.
Proving to be an actress who can successfully cross over many movie genres, Nia had a supporting role in the 1999 thriller Stigmata, In Too Deep (1999), and Boiler Room (2000), starring Ben Affleck and Giovanni Ribisi. While her stint in Boiler Room did get her noticed, it was 2000's surprise summer hit Big Momma's House, which co-starred Martin Lawrence, that gained Nia even more recognition. That same year she was listed as one of the 50 Most Beautiful People in the World by People magazine, and gave birth to her son, Massai Zhivago Dorsey II, with fiancé Massai Dorsey (whom she married in June 2001).
After a 2-year hiatus, Nia Long returned to television in 2002, in the made-for-TV movie Sightings: Heartland Ghost and had a recurring role in the Amy Brenneman vehicle Judging Amy.
Nia became much busier in 2003, as she began starring in the hit NBC drama Third Watch, for which she won an NAACP Image award for Best Dramatic Actress, and the big screen movie How To Get the Man's Foot Outta Your Ass.
Although Nia still stars in the weekly NBC show, she made time to star in two films for 2004: Alfie co-starring Jude Law and Are We There Yet? co-starring Ice Cube.
Nia Long Filmography
Are We Done Yet? (2007) .... Suzanne Kingston
... aka Our New Life in Everwood (UK: new syndication title)
- Truth (2006) TV Episode .... Cassie
Big Momma's House 2 (2006) .... Sherri
"Third Watch" .... Off. Sasha Monroe (2003-2005)
Are We There Yet? (2005) .... Suzanne Kingston
Alfie (2004) .... Lonette
How to Get the Man's Foot Outta Your Ass (2003) .... Sandra
... aka Baadasssss! (USA: new title)
... aka Badass (USA)
... aka Gettin' the Man's Foot Outta Your Baadasssss! (USA: new title)
Sightings: Heartland Ghost (2002) (TV) .... Lou
"Judging Amy" .... Andrea Solomon
Big Momma's House (2000) .... Sherry Pierce
... aka Big Mamas Haus (Germany)
If These Walls Could Talk 2 (2000) (TV) .... Karen (segment "1972")
Boiler Room (2000) .... Abbie Halpert
The Broken Hearts Club: A Romantic Comedy (2000) .... Leslie
The Secret Laughter of Women (1999) .... Nimi Da Silva
Held Up (1999) .... Rae
Stigmata (1999) .... Donna Chadway
The Best Man (1999/I) .... Jordan Armstrong
In Too Deep (1999) .... Myra
Butter (1998) .... Carmen Jones
... aka Never 2 Big (USA: video box title)
Black Jaq (1998) (TV) .... Jaqueline 'Jaq' Blackman
Soul Food (1997) .... Robin/'Bird'
Hav Plenty (1997) .... Trudy
Love Jones (1997) .... Nina Mosley
- A Concerted Effort: Part 1 (1996) TV Episode .... Babysitter
- A Concerted Effort: Part 2 (1996) TV Episode .... Babysitter
- Baby Shower (1996) TV Episode .... Christy Wilson
"Live Shot" (1995) TV Series .... Ramona Greer
"The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" .... Lisa Wilkes
Friday (1995) .... Debbie
... aka My Girls
- Love Takes a Holiday (1993) TV Episode .... Stacey Evans
Made in America (1993) .... Zora Mathews
"The Guiding Light" (1952) TV Series .... Katherine 'Kat' Speakes (1991-1993)
... aka Guiding Light (USA: new title)
Boyz n the Hood (1991) .... Brandi
... aka Boys in the Hood
Buried Alive (1990) .... Fingers
... aka Edgar Allan Poe's Buried Alive
The B.R.A.T. Patrol (1986) (TV) .... Darla Perkins
- Slam Dunk (1986) TV Episode (uncredited) .... Girl
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