1 - Actor Djimon Hounsou not only portrays heroes on the big screen, but works for social and ecological justice off screen.
2 - Djimon most recently appeared as Caliban in Julie Taymor's film version of The Tempest.
Eyes - Brown
Hair - Black
Type - Athletic / Mid 40's
He works as an actor / Social issues activist / Eco-warrior
Works in television / Film
3 - Djimon grew up in Cotonou, in Benin, West Africa where French is commonly spoken. At 13 he was sent to live with his older brother in Lyons, France in order to attend school.
Was discovered by fashion designer Thierry Muglar and worked steadily as a model (1980s)
Appeared in music videos for:
Madonna (Express Yourself)
Steve Winwood (Roll With It)
Paula Abdul (Straight Up)
Janet Jackson (Love Will Never Do Without You) - (late 1980s/early 1990s)
Moved into acting roles, including a recurring role on ER and in films like Stargate (1994)
Next photo is straying into Not Safe For Work territory...
4 - Djimon keeps in tiptop shape, at first for his modelling career, then for the stunt work required of roles in action dramas like Blood Diamond.
5 - No matter how delicious Mr. Hounsou may be, he's strictly eye candy, ladies - he belongs to his partner of four years, Missouri-born-and-bred former model and fashion executive Kimora Lee Simmons.
6 - Djimon first appeared on my radar when he played Juba in Ridley Scott's Gladiator. I love how he's literally got Russell Crowe's back in this sequence.
7 - But Djimon can give the gray characters a spin every now and then, like Midnite in Constantine.
The proprietor of a nightclub which serves the figures of Heaven and Hell, Midnite has a foot in both.
Somehow, Djimon can make pimp suits much cooler than they ought to be.
8 - Remember my soft spot for a man in chains?
Amistad provides a rather intense version.
9 - For the most part, Djimon plays seriously shiny heroes.
When it comes to his personal heroic figures, he looks to Nelson Mandela for inspiration (Kam Williams interview.)
10 - Two-time Academy Award nominee Djimon has worked with many top directors during his film career, including the brilliant Julie Taymor for The Tempest.
"Taymor saves the absolute best for last: Prospera’s leave-taking of Caliban (Djimon Hounsou), a static and silent moment, is a brilliant cinematic equivalent for aporia [a seemingly insoluable impasse,] a real and painful doubt about the possibility of a resolution to the conflict between them, and the underlying issues of race and culture, that the play sets up." - Richard Brody, The New Yorker
11 - Of course, Djimon is an awesome crier.
CLICK HERE to watch a clip from Blood Diamond
12 - When he's not on set waiting for the director to call 'Action!' Djimon doesn't hesitate to act on behalf of others.
In 2008 he appeared on Capital Hill in Washington, D.C. to lobby for the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act, which provides funding to local organizations addressing the needs of America's homeless youth.
"Due to the lack of systems and support [for homeless youth in Paris,] or not knowing how to find people, only made matters worse [for Djimon who lived on the streets for a time during his teen years.] He spent nights in juvenile services as a means to survive.
'I understand that some of the things you go through, it's not just about you,' Djimon said to 9 News Now. 'Some of the pain that is inflicted upon you, mostly does not have to do with you.'
The actor says that today he is most grateful for the experience. 'All the experiences I've gone through, good or bad, they are all a great stepping stone for you to discover yourself.' " - Lauren Vance, WUSA9
13 - But why stop at Capital Hill if one has something to say about a passionate cause?
Djimon spoke at the United Nations in 2009 on behalf of climate change.