American Oscar-winning actor Cuba Gooding Jr. has given movie lovers a lot of movies to remember. He began his career on the big screen with a small role in Eddie Murphy’s Coming to America (1988) before making his big breakthrough in Boyz n the Hood in 1991. In the 90s until the new millennium, he appeared in a number of remarkable films. But from the middle of the 2000s, Gooding’s career began to shrink.
He starred in a series of lesser-known direct-to-video films that were hardly noticed by the critics. This went on for over a decade, a period in his career that Gooding described as a wilderness phase, for which he also blames himself. Fortunately, Gooding seems to have returned to the saddle in recent years thanks to his role as O.J. Simpson in Ryan Murphy’s American Crime Story. We take you through his journey to become a Hollywood star, while we also touch on some aspects of his personal life.
Cuba Gooding Jr – Bio, Age
Cuba Michael Gooding Jr. was born on January 2, 1968, in the Bronx, New York City, the son of Cuba and Shirley Gooding, who were both independent singers. His mother Shirley Gooding was one of the background singers of the group Sweethearts from the 1960s, while his father was the lead singer of the R&B group Main Ingredient, which became famous in 1972 with their hit Everybody Plays The Fool.
Due to his father’s music, the family moved to Los Angeles when Cuba was 4 years old. When he was six years old, his father left the family to the sole care of his mother. Cuba’s mother could hardly afford the rent and therefore had to jump from place to place with the children. On some days they slept in cheap hotels and on other days in their car.
Due to the constant movement, Cuba attended four different high schools. However, the frequent moves had little or no effect on his talents. He was class president at three of the high schools he attended and was very involved in extracurricular activities such as dancing, acting, and sports.
In the mid-1980s Gooding began to appear in films and it was not long before he had his first break with Boyz n the Hood, which was both a commercial and critical success. His career took a giant leap after winning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Jerry Maguire (1996). Cuba Goding Jr. is still active in the entertainment business.
Cuba Gooding Jr. certainly made a lot of money from acting, although this 10-year wilderness period, during which he appeared in successive direct-to-video films, almost drove him into bankruptcy. During his heyday, Gooding was able to earn $3 million for a single role. His net worth is estimated at around 10 to 15 million dollars.
Cuba Gooding has two brothers, Tommy Gooding and Omar Gooding. Perhaps the most popular of the two is Omar, who like Cuba is an actor. Besides acting, Omar has great vocal skills. Omar was born on October 19, 1976, in Los Angeles, California.
He began his career in show business in the early 1990s and is best known for his roles on small screens. He has appeared on television shows such as Touched by an Angel, Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper, Playmakers, and Grey’s Anatomy. Some of his remarkable films include Ghost Dad, Baby Boy, and Mr. Box Office.
Every Gooding seems to have a musical side, and Omar is no exception. He’s a good rapper. Omar attended North Hollywood High School, which he graduated from in 1994.
Tommy Gooding is probably the one who really inherited most of her father’s musical genes. During his father’s active time as a musician, Tommy served as the musical director of his father’s touring band.
Cuba Gooding Jr. married his high school sweetheart Sara Kapfer, who is a teacher, in 1994. Before their marriage, the two lived together for seven years. Their marriage seemed so happy until March 2014, when it was announced that the two had separated and Kapfer filed for divorce and joint physical and legal custody of their three children, Spencer, Mason, and Piper.
According to TMZ, Sara Kapfer cited insurmountable differences in her petition as grounds for the divorce. Despite news of the divorce petitions, it is unclear to the media how the divorce was finalized and whether it was ever consummated.
Later, reports appeared that the couple continued to see each other from time to time after the divorce petitions. Gooding would later, in January 2017, file his own papers. Cuba’s sons Spencer and Mason were born in 1994 and 1996 respectively, while Piper was born in 2005.
Height and Other Facts
1. Cuba Gooding Jr. is 5 feet 10 inches tall
2. He was named one of the most beautiful people in the world by People Magazine in 1997.
3. During the 1984 Olympic Games in LA, Gooding was one of the background dancers for Lionel Richie’s performance at the age of 16 It was his first appearance in showbiz.
4. He also danced as a background dancer for the British singer Paula Abdul.
5. Gooding was rejected as a writer for the leading role in Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino preferred Jamie Foxx for the role.
6. He loves to play hockey.
7. During his high school years, Gooding practiced his autograph in math classes to prepare for his future fame.
8. From the age of 13, he became a born-again Christian.