Sanaa Lathan

Sanaa Lathan

Highest Rated: 86% A Raisin in the Sun (2008)

Lowest Rated: 18% The Perfect Guy (2015)

Birthday: Sep 19, 1971

Birthplace: New York, New York, USA

An actress who has been noted equally for her talent and beauty, Sanaa Lathan first caught the attention of critics and audiences alike in a series of witty, thought-provoking late-'90s films about the lives of young African-Americans. Featured prominently in such ensemble pieces as The Best Man and The Wood (both 1999), Lathan won her first starring role in Gina Prince-Bythewood's widely acclaimed Love & Basketball (2000), playing a talented basketball player who finds her professional dreams complicated by her relationship with her boyfriend and her own expectations of herself. Lathan's work in the film, along with her performance that same year in Prince-Bythewood's HBO movie Disappearing Acts, announced the actress as a charismatic new talent to watch. Born on October 19, 1971, Lathan -- whose first name is Swahili for "work of art" -- was the second oldest of five children born to Broadway actress and dancer Eleanor McCoy and director/producer Stan Lathan. Surrounded by show business since day one, Lathan began training in dance and gymnastics at an early age. Following her parents' divorce, she grew up shuttling between her mother's home in New York and Los Angeles, where her father lived. During her undergraduate education at UC Berkeley, where she studied English and toyed with the idea of becoming a lawyer, Lathan became involved with the Black Theater Workshop. Thanks in part to her stage experiences with the Workshop, she was encouraged to try out for the Yale School of Drama, where she was ultimately accepted.Following her training at Yale, where she performed in a number of Shakespeare's plays, Lathan earned acclaim both off-Broadway and on the Los Angeles stage. Encouraged by her father to make L.A. her professional base, the young actress found early TV work on episodes of such shows as Family Matters, NYPD Blue, and Moesha. During that same period, she won raves and a Best Actress nod from the Los Angeles NAACP Theatrical Award Committee for her performance in To Take Arms.In 1998, Lathan earned a degree of big-screen recognition with her role as the mother of Wesley Snipes' title character in Blade. She followed this the subsequent year with back-to-back turns in The Best Man and The Wood. The former was a comedic ensemble piece starring Taye Diggs, Nia Long, Morris Chestnut, Harold Perrineau Jr., and Monica Calhoun, and featured Lathan as Diggs' girlfriend; while the latter, another ensemble piece starring Diggs, Omar Epps, and Richard T. Jones, cast her as the love interest of Epps, who also happened to be her real-life boyfriend. In 1999, Lathan played yet another girlfriend, this time Eddie Murphy's, in Ted Demme's comedy Life. Lathan and Epps were reunited onscreen in Prince-Bythewood's Love & Basketball, this time playing a couple as passionate about basketball as they are about each other. The widely lauded film served as a break-out role for Lathan, who was finally able to play a leading character instead of the girlfriend of one. Her work in Love & Basketball earned her Best Actress nominations for both the N.A.A.C.P. Image Award and the Independent Spirit Award. That same year, Lathan earned additional acclaim for her work in the multicultural comedy Catfish in Black Bean Sauce and for her second collaboration with Prince-Bythewood, Disappearing Acts. Based on a novel by Terry McMillan, the HBO movie cast Lathan as an aspiring singer/songwriter in love with a carpenter, played by her Blade co-star Wesley Snipes. For her work in the film Lathan earned an Essence Award for Best Actress, as well as the added assurance of a very busy work schedule.


Highest Rated Movies



No Score Yet Now You See Me 3 Natalie Austin 2020
62% Native Son Trudy Thomas 2019
71% Nappily Ever After Violet Jones Producer 2018
No Score Yet The Best Man Wedding Robin 2018
34% American Assassin Irene Kennedy $34.5M 2017
34% Now You See Me 2 Deputy Director Natalie Austin $65.1M 2016
43% Approaching the Unknown Captain Emily Maddox 2016
18% The Perfect Guy Leah Vaughn $45.1M 2015
20% Repentance Maggie $1.2M 2014
71% The Best Man Holiday Robin Stewart 2013
85% Contagion Aubrey Cheever $75.7M 2011
42% Wonderful World Khadi 2010
25% Powder Blue Diana 2009
52% The Family That Preys Andrea $37.1M 2008
86% A Raisin in the Sun Beneatha Younger 2008
61% Something New Kenya Denise McQueen $11.5M 2006
No Score Yet The Golden Blaze Monica 2005
21% AVP - Alien Vs. Predator Alexa Woods $80.3M 2004
64% Out of Time Ann Merai Harrison $41M 2003
66% Brown Sugar Sidney $27.2M 2002
No Score Yet Drive Carolyn Brody 2002
57% Blade II Vanessa Brooks (uncredited) $82.1M 2002
60% Disappearing Acts Actor 2000
43% Catfish in Black Bean Sauce Nina 2000
83% Love and Basketball Monica Wright 2000
No Score Yet The Bestman Actor 1999
72% The Best Man Robin 1999
61% The Wood Alicia 1999
50% Life Daisy 1999
55% Blade Vanessa 1998
No Score Yet Drive Actor 1998
No Score Yet Miracle in the Woods Lilly 1997


68% The Twilight Zone
Nina Harrison 2019
86% The Affair
Jenelle 2019
No Score Yet The Talk
Guest 2019
No Score Yet Last Call With Carson Daly
Guest 2018
No Score Yet The Daily Show With Trevor Noah
Guest 2018
No Score Yet Harry
Guest 2017
84% Shots Fired
Ashe Akino Ashe Akino 2017
No Score Yet Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen
Guest 2017
No Score Yet The Chew
Guest 2017
No Score Yet The View
Guest 2017
No Score Yet The Wendy Williams Show
Guest 2017
71% Family Guy
Voice 2017
No Score Yet Real Husbands of Hollywood
Appearing 2014
No Score Yet The Cleveland Show
Voice 2013
81% Boss
Mona Fredricks 2012
No Score Yet Chelsea Lately
Guest 2008
75% Nip/Tuck
Michelle Landau 2007
84% NYPD Blue
Shirley Barish 1998
No Score Yet Family Matters
60% Lateline


Alexa Woods says: How do you say 'scared shitless' in Italian?

Sebastian De Rosa says: "Non vedo l'ora di uscire da questa piramide con te, perché mi sto cagando addosso...More or less."

Alexa Woods says: You're one ugly mother(fucker)....

Monica Wright says: I loved you since I was 11 and that shit just won't go away!

Monica Wright says: I loved you since I was 11, and that shit just won't go away!

Monica Wright says: All's fair in love and basketball baby.

Alexa Woods says: t's a bomb. Well, I hope it kills every fucking one of 'em!

Alexa Woods says: It's a bomb. Well, I hope it kills every fucking one of 'em!

Pam says: I am tired of her looking down her nose at us... like we didn't live in the same house or the same neighborhood!

Andrea says: I didn't like it then, and I don't like it now.

Alice Pratt says: This is your sister! When are you two going to act like it?

Andrea says: You better watch your step.

Abby says: It is sisters like you that give us all a bad name.