Born: May 9, 1979
Birthplace: New York City, New York, U.S.
Occupation: Actress, Singer, Writer
Rosario Dawson (born May 9, 1979) is an American actress, singer, and writer. She has appeared in films such as Kids, Men in Black II, 25th Hour, Sin City, Clerks II, Rent, Death Proof, The Rundown, Eagle Eye, Alexander, Seven Pounds, Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief and Unstoppable.
Dawson was born in New York City to Isabel Celeste, a writer and singer of Puerto Rican and Afro-Cuban descent. Isabel was seventeen years old when Rosario was born, and never married Rosario's biological father, Patrick C. Harris. When Isabel was eighteen, she married Greg Dawson, a construction worker, who "loved and raised Rosario as his own daughter" (Dawson has stated that "He's always been my dad"). Dawson has a brother, Clay, who is four years younger. Her parents divorced in 2006.
At the age of 26, Dawson's mother moved the family into an abandoned building squat on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, where she and her husband renovated an apartment and installed the plumbing and electrical wiring for the building, creating affordable housing where their family and two children would grow up. Dawson has cited this when explaining how she learned "If you wanted something better, you had to do it yourself."
As a child, Dawson made a brief appearance on Sesame Street. At the age of 15, she was subsequently discovered on her front porch step by photographer Larry Clark and Harmony Korine, where Harmony lauded her as being perfect for a part he had written in his screenplay that would become the controversial 1995 film Kids. She went on to star in varied roles, ranging from independent films to big budget blockbusters including Rent, He Got Game, and Men in Black II.
In 1999, Dawson teamed up with Prince for the re-release of his 1980s hit "1999." The new remixed version featured the actress in an introductory voice over, offering commentary on the state of the world in the year before the new millennium. The same year, she appeared in The Chemical Brothers' video for the song "Out of Control" from the album Surrender. She is also featured on the track "She Lives In My Lap" from the second disc of the OutKast album Speakerboxxx/The Love Below, in which she speaks the intro and a brief interlude towards the end. In 2001, she appeared in the movie, Josie and the Pussycats.
Dawson starred as Naturelle Rivera, the love interest of a convicted drug dealer played by Edward Norton, in the 2002 Spike Lee film drama, 25th Hour. In the 2004 Oliver Stone film Alexander, she played the bride of Alexander the Great. In the autumn of 2005, Dawson appeared on stage as Julia in the Public Theater's "Shakespeare in the Park" revival of Two Gentlemen of Verona. It was her first appearance on stage. “That park is so beautiful,” she said of New York's Central Park.
In the film adaptation of the popular musical Rent in 2005, she played the exotic dancer Mimi Marquez, replacing Daphne Rubin-Vega, who was pregnant and unable to play the part. She also appeared in the adaptation of the graphic novel Sin City, co-directed by Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller, portraying Gail, a prostitute-dominatrix. Also in that year, she appeared in a graphically violent scene in the Rob Zombie film The Devil's Rejects. Though the scene was cut from the final film, it is available in the deleted scenes on the DVD release.
She starred as Becky in 2006's Clerks II, and mentioned in Back to the Well, the making-of documentary, that the donkey show sequence was what made her decide to take the role. In May of the same year, Dawson, an avid comic book fan, co-created the comic book miniseries Occult Crimes Taskforce. She was at the 2007 Comic-Con to promote the comic. She co-starred with former Rent alum Tracie Thoms in the Quentin Tarantino throwback movie Death Proof in 2007, part of the Tarantino/Robert Rodriguez double feature Grind House. She teamed up with friend Talia Lugacy, whom she met at the Lee Strasberg Academy, to produce and star in Descent. On July 7, 2007, Dawson presented at the American leg of Live Earth.
In 2008, Dawson starred with Will Smith in Seven Pounds and in the Steven Spielberg produced Eagle Eye. Beginning in August, she starred in Gemini Division, an online TV series. In the computer animated series Afterworld she voiced the character Officer Delondre Baines. On January 17, 2009, Dawson hosted Saturday Night Live. Later in the year, she voiced Artemis of Bana-Mighdall in the animated film Wonder Woman.
In 2009, Dawson performed in The People Speak, a documentary feature film that uses dramatic and musical performances of the letters, diaries, and speeches of everyday Americans, based on historian Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States.
In 2009, Dawson also voiced the character of Velvet Von Black in Rob Zombie's animated feature, The Haunted World of El Superbeasto.
For the Kasabian album West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum, she is featured singing on the track "West Ryder Silver Bullet".
In 2010, she starred in the movies Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, as Persephone, and Unstoppable, as railway yardmaster Connie.
Dawson dated former Sex and the City star Jason Lewis for two years. They lived together in Los Angeles until they separated in November 2006..
Dawson is involved with the Lower East Side Girls Club and supports other charities such as environmental group Global Cool, the ONE Campaign, Oxfam, Amnesty International, Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, Stay Close.org (a poster and public service ad campaign for PFLAG where she is featured with her uncle Frank Jump), International Rescue Committee, and Voto Latino, and she participated in the Vagina Monologues. She is on the V-Day Board. She attended both the Democratic National Convention (in 2008) as well as the Republican National Convention (also in 2008). In October 2008, Dawson became a spokeswoman for TripAdvisor.com’s philanthropy program, More Than Footprints, involving Conservation International, Doctors Without Borders, National Geographic Society, The Nature Conservancy, and Save The Children. Also in October 2008, she lent her voice to the RESPECT! Campaign, a movement aimed at preventing domestic violence. She recorded a voice message for the Giverespect.org Web site stressing the importance of respect in helping stop domestic violence.
Dawson is a supporter of Arsenal Football Club. On February 16, 2011, before an Arsenal FC vs FC Barcelona UEFA Champions League match, Dawson wrote on her official Twitter account: "I'll be happy with either team winning cuz I love them both but yes I'm a Gunner first & foremost sooooo #gooooArsenal."
|1997||Girls' Night Out||Girl||Short Film|
|1998||He Got Game||Lala Bonilla|
|1998||Side Streets||Marisol Hidalgo|
|1999||Light It Up||Stephanie Williams|
|2000||Down to You||Lana|
|2000||King of the Jungle||Veronica|
|2001||Josie and the Pussycats||Valerie Brown|
|2001||Sidewalks of New York||Maria Tedesko|
|2002||Ash Wednesday||Grace Quinonez|
|2002||Men in Black II||Laura Vasquez|
|2002||The Adventures of Pluto Nash||Dina Lake|
|2002||25th Hour||Naturelle Riviera|
|2002||The First $20 Million Is Always the Hardest||Alisa|
|2002||Love in the Time of Money||Anna|
|2003||V-Day: Until the Violence Stops||Herself||Documentary|
|2003||This Girl's Life||Martine|
|2003||Shattered Glass||Andy Fox|
|2004||This Revolution||Tina Santiago|
|2005||Little Black Dress||Haley||Short Film|
|2006||Clerks II||Rebecca "Becky" Scott|
|2006||A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints||Laurie|
|2007||Grindhouse: Death Proof||Abernathy Ross|
|2007||Robot Chicken||Clara Palmer||TV Series: 1 Episode|
|2008||Explicit Ills||Babo's Mom|
|2008||Eagle Eye||Zoe Perez|
|2008||Gemini Division||Anna Diaz||Web Series: 50 episodes
Also Executive Producer
|2008||Seven Pounds||Emily Posa||NAACP Image Award For Best Actress|
|2009||Wonder Woman||Artemis||Voice Only|
|2009||The Haunted World of El Superbeasto||Velvet Von Black||Voice Only|
|2009||Un-broke: What You Need To Know About Money||Herself||TV Movie|
|2009||SpongeBob's Truth or Square||Herself||TV Series: 1 Episode|
|2009||The People Speak||Herself||Documentary|
|2010||Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief||Persephone|
|2011||Girl Walks Into a Bar||June|
|2012||Syndicate||Lily Drawl||Video Game Voiceover|
|2012||Gimme Shelter||June Bailey|
|2012||Fire with Fire||Talia Durham|
Rosario Dawson supports the following charitable cause: Environment.