One of today’s hottest stars, Gabrielle Union, continues to shine. Union can be seen in the BET series “Being Mary Jane,” written by Mara Brock Akil and directed by Salim Akil. Union plays the lead, ‘Mary Jane Paul’ a successful talk show host. The 90-minute pilot debuted in summer of 2013 as the highest-rated show on cable for the evening pulling in 4 million viewers. Union earned rave reviews for her performance as ‘Mary Jane.’ Nuzhat Naoreen of Entertainment Weekly stated, “The pilot is funny, fresh, and affecting. Much of the credit goes to Union, who manages to capture her character's single gal despondency without making her appear weak or needy.” Megan Angelo of Glamour magazine also stated, “I can't remember the last time I watched a show and was so utterly hooked on a heroine. I think that's partially due to room-to-breathe extended episode, partially due to Union's authentic, balls-out performance, and partially due to the fact that the character is so damn likable for so many reasons.” Union received a 2014 NAACP Image Award for “Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special” for her role in “Being Mary Jane.” The series airs on BET and will be returning for its third season on Tuesday, October 20th. Union recently wrapped production on Nate Parker’s The Birth of a Nation alongside Armie Hamier and Penelope Ann Miller due out in 2016. The film will follow the story of Nat Turner, a former slave in America, who leads a liberation movement in 1831 to free African-Americans in Virgina that results in a violent retaliation from whites. She also recently filmed Baran bo Odar’s SLEEPLESS NIGHT alongside Michelle Monagham, Dermot Mulroney and Jamie Foxx. The film follows an undercover police officer scouring a nightclub in search of his kidnapped son. Union will play Foxx’s wife and the mother of the missing boy. It was recently announced that Union will voice Nala in Disney’s new animated TV movie “The Lion Guard” alongside Rob Lowe, Sarah Hyland and Atticus Shaffer. The film will follow Kion, the son of Simba and Nala, as he leads his friends to protect the Pride Lands. The story will premiere as a TV movie in the fall before going to series in 2016 on Disney Channel and Disney Junior. Union was recently seen in the Chris Rock’s new comedy Top Five in which she portrayed Rock’s fiancé. The film, produced by Scott Rudin, premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and was released by Paramount Pictures. She made her production debut in January by executive producing the Lifetime movie, With This Ring. The film stars Regina Hall and Eve and is a romantic comedy based on the bestseller The Vow by Denene Millner. Union’s additional film credits include Screem Gems hits Think Like a Man and Think Like a Man Too, Lionsgate’s Good Deeds, Film Science’s In Our Nature, critically acclaimed Cadillac Records, The Perfect Holiday, Tyler Perry’s Daddy’s Little Girls, Ryan Murphy's Running With Scissors, the blockbuster hit Bad Boys II, Breakin’ All the Rules, Deliver Us From Eva, Universal’s cult hit Bring It On, Welcome to Collinwood, Abandoned, Two Can Play That Game, Love & Basketball, Cradle to the Grave, Ten Things I Hate About You, The Brothers, Neo Ned, The Honeymooners, Meet Dave and She’s All That. Union was recently seen in PBS’ four hour television documentary series “Half the Sky,” based on the best-selling book by Pulitzer Prize winners Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide. On the small screen, Union made her debut in UPN’s hit comedy “Moesha,” and then went on to guest-star on such hit shows as “ER,” “Dave’s World” and “The Steve Harvey Show.” Shortly thereafter, she had a recurring role on two WB hit shows, “Sister, Sister” and “7th Heaven.” Union stirred things up when she guest starred as a love interest to both ‘Joey’ (Matt LeBlanc) and ‘Ross’ (David Schwimmer) on “Friends.” With this role, Union marked the first AfricanAmerican love interest on the series. She also joined the cast of Steven Bochco’s “City of Angels” for one season. Union was seen on ABC’s “Flash Forward,” NBC’s “Life” and ABC’s “Ugly Betty.” In addition, she starred in ABC’s critically acclaimed series “Night Stalker” opposite Stuart Townsend and was also seen in HBO’s award-winning “Something the Lord Made,” opposite Alan Rickman, Kyra Sedgwick and Mos Def. Union’s passion for acting is rivaled by her involvement as an Ambassador for the Susan G. Komen Foundation as well as her support for the Young Survivor Coalition (YSC) and the Rape Treatment Center (RTC) at UCLA. In her free time, Union often travels on behalf of Susan G. Komen and the YSC to share her story of losing a friend to Breast Cancer and inspires others as well as visits the RTC to talk to young women. She also helped found a program called “A Step for Success” in 2004 which helps to raise funds for the economically challenged Kelso Elementary School in Los Angeles. The program holds fundraisers to help pay for books, classroom supplies and many other daily needs that teachers have fallen burden to paying for themselves. Union serves as an ambassador for Tylenol’s #HowWeFamily campaign, a program to instill pride and confidence in all way in which families are comprised today. Native of Nebraska, Union currently splits her time between Los Angeles and Miami with her family.
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