Adepero Oduye hails from Brooklyn, New York City by way of Nigeria. She is a graduate of Cornell University; and has studied acting with Wynn Handman, Austin Pendleton, and Susan Batson. Her name is pronounced “Add-eh-pair-o Oh-due-yay.”
Her theatre credits include Danai Gurira’s play Eclipsed, at the Yale Repertory Theatre; The Bluest Eye, at the Hartford Stage and Long Wharf Theatres; and Fela!, in the AEA workshop, directed and choreographed by Bill T. Jones.
Ms. Oduye first starred for writer/director Dee Rees as Alike in the award-winning short film Pariah. Among the other shorts that she has starred in are Gabriele Zamparini’s Water; Russell Costanzo’s The Tested; and Nadiah Hamzah’s Sub Rosa.
She has made guest appearances on such television programs as Louie and two Law & Order series.
A Nigerian native, actress Adepero Oduye first broke out on the small screen in Steel Magnolias and in shorts Pariah and If I Leap. She made her Broadway debut as Thelma in the revival of The Trip to Bountiful. Here is her biography.
- Date of birth: Jan 11, 1978
- Adepero Oduye age: 42 years old (as of 2020)
- Zodiac sign: Capricorn
- Birthplace: New York City, NY
- Height: 5′ 11″ (1.8 m)
- Weight: 73kg
- Hair colour: Black
- Eye colour: Dark brown
- Body measurements: 40-30-13 inches
- Profession: Actress, Director, Writer
Adepero Oduye’s background
Adepero Oduye is from Brooklyn, New York City. She was born to her father, Olu Oduye, and to her mother named Temitope Oduye, and she was raised in Brooklyn.
She has six siblings.
Adepero Oduye attended Townsend Harris High School and later enrolled at Cornell University.
She has also studied acting with Wynn Handman, Austin Pendleton, and Susan Batson.
“I had an inkling that I might not become a doctor, but my father’s death sealed the deal. It led me to ask, ‘Is this what I really want?'”
The actress said,
“The reason why I found acting is because my father passed away. He passed away really young. I was going to go to med school. My father’s dream was that all of his kids become doctors. I realized in school I didn’t like it. When he died, it was like a wake-up call. Life is too short to do something you don’t want to do.”
On a whim, Adepero enrolled in acting classes, a move that initially “blindsided” her mother:
“She was worried. My parents came to this country and worked really hard, and they wanted it to be easier for their kids.”
But by the time Adepero landed roles in the workshop of Fela, the feature film Half Nelson and the 2011 Sundance hit Pariah, the actress’ mother had become her biggest fan:
“If I have thoughts of quitting, she says, ‘No. I know where you started from, and you can’t give up…. It’s really touching.
Oduye made her Broadway debut as Thelma, a soft-spoken young bus passenger who befriends Mama Watts in The Trip to Bountiful.
Her theatre credits include Danai Gurira’s play Eclipsed at the Yale Repertory Theatre; The Bluest Eye at the Hartford Stage and Long Wharf Theatres; and Delayed! in the AEA workshop, directed and choreographed by Bill T. Jones.
Her breakout role came in 2011 when she starred in Dee Rees’ critically acclaimed and award-winning independent film Pariah, for which she received several awards and a nomination for Best Female Lead at the Independent Spirit Awards.
In Pariah, Adepero Oduye plays Alike, a 17-year-old African American girl in New York struggling to reconcile her identity as a lesb*an and an emerging writer with the expectations of her conservative parents and her outspoken best friend.
Among the other shorts that she has starred in are Gabriele Zamparini’s Water; Russell Costanzo’s The Tested; and Nadiah Hamzah’s Sub Rosa.
She has also made guest appearances on such television programs as Louie and two Law & Order series.
She made her directorial debut with Breaking In, a short film about a young black man’s first time being stopped and frisked by the NYPD, based on her brother’s experience. The film has garnered several film festival acknowledgments and awards.
Adepero Oduye movies and TV shows
The actress has starred in the following:
- 2021 – The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (post-production)
- 2020 – Imitation (Short) (post-production) – Nkem
- 2020 – Monsterland – Amy Cooke
- 2020 – Tazmanian Devil – Elizabeth Ayodele
- 2017-2019 – The Feels – Ife
- 2019 – When They See Us – Nomsa Brath
- 2018 – Viper Club – Keisha
- 2018 – Widows – Breechelle
- 2018 – Random Acts of Flyness – Aunt Denise
- 2018 – Wanderland – Anais
- 2018 – Galveston – Loraine
- 2017 – Geostorm – Eni Adisa
- 2017 – To Be Free (Short) – Nina Simone
- 2017 – The Dinner – Nina
- 2015 – Train Baby
- 2015 – The Big Short – Kathy Tao
- 2015 – Emily & Tim – Meg Hanratty (segment ‘Acceptance’)
- 2015 – Artemis Falls (Short) – Commander Aiden Collins
- 2013 – 12 Years a Slave – Eliza
- 2013 – The Door (Short) – L
- 2012 – The Coolest White Boy Ever – Adepero
- 2012 – Steel Magnolias – Annelle
- 2011 – Men in Love – Leo’s Ex
- 2011 – Touch of Evil – The Outlaw
- 2011 – Pariah – Alike
- 2010 – This Is Poetry – Wife
- 2010 – Louie – Tarese
- 2010 – Tags – Shayla Johns
- 2009 – If I Leap – Zipporah
- 2009 – Sub Rosa – Ayesha
- 2009 – The Unusuals – Regina Plank
- 2007 – Wifey – Kadijah
- 2007 – Pariah – Alike
- 2006 – Three and a Half Thoughts – Bodega Woman #1
- 2006 – Law & Order: Criminal Intent – Jackie
- 2006 – The Tested – Mom
- 2006 – Half Nelson – Crack Smoker
- 2005 – Law & Order – Traci Sands
- 2004 – Fall
- 2004 – On the Outs – Adepero
- 2002 – Water (Short) – Woman
Awards and nominations
The actress has 5 award wins and 12 nominations to her name. The awards she has won include:
- 2011 – African-American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) award for Breakout Performance (Pariah)
- 2013 – Black Film Critics Circle Award for Best Ensemble (12 Years a Slave)
- 2011 – Black Film Critics Circle Award
- 2012 – Black Reel Award for Best Breakthrough Performance (Pariah)
- 2017 – NYC Web Fest award for Special Guest Star (The Feels)
Adepero Oduye net worth
According to Idol Birthdays, her net worth is $7 million.
Adepero Oduye husband
The actress is a very private person. As such, details about her love life are not in the public domain. If she has a husband, she has done a great job keeping him away from the limelight.
Adepero Oduye is an iconic actress who has managed to conquer the Hollywood industry despite her young age. She is definitely worth all the accolades she has won plus many more.
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