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Don Cheadle        

Actor, Activist & Author; Known for "Iron Man 2" & "Hotel Rwanda"

Donald Frank Cheadle was born in Kansas City, Missouri on November 29, 1964. After graduating high school in Denver, Colorado, Cheadle attended and graduated from the California Institute of the Arts with a Bachelor¹s Degree in Fine Arts. Encouraged by his college friends, he attended a variety of auditions and landed a recurring role on the hit series "Fame" (1982), which led to feature film roles in Dennis Hopper's "Colors" (1988) and John Irvin's "Hamburger Hill" (1987).

Early in his career, Cheadle was named Best Supporting Actor by the Los Angeles Film Critics for his breakout performance opposite Denzel Washington in Devil in a Blue Dress (1995). His subsequent film credits include the 2006 Oscar-winning Best Picture, "Crash" (2004), which Cheadle also produced; "Hotel Rwanda" (2004), for which his performance garnered Oscar, Golden Globe, Broadcast Film Critics and Screen Actors Guild award nominations for Best Actor; Steven Soderbergh's Ocean's Eleven (2001), Ocean's Twelve (2004) and Ocean's Thirteen (2007), starring Brad Pitt and George Clooney. Cheadle was honored by the CineVegas Film Festival and the Los Angeles Film Festival and received ShoWest's Male Star of the Year award. He is also well-recognized for his television work, including his portrayal of Sammy Davis Jr. in HBO's "The Rat Pack" (1998), for which he received a Golden Globe Award and a Best Supporting Actor Emmy nomination. His recent big screen appearances have been in Antoine Fuqua's ensemble crime thriller "Brooklyn's Finest" (2009) and his recurring role as Col. James 'Rhodey' Rhodes in Marvel's "Iron Man" and "The Avengers" films.

A talented musician who plays saxophone, writes music and sings, Cheadle is also an accomplished stage actor and director, and was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2004 for Best Spoken Word Album for his narration/dramatization of the Walter Mosley novel "Fear Itself."

After acting in "Hotel Rwanda," a film about the early 1990s Rwandan genocide, he became an activist to raise awareness of the mid-2000s genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan. In January 2005, he traveled to Sudan with five members of Congress to see refugee camps and to meet survivors of the genocide. Upon his return, he reported on his trip for ABC News Nightline. Other notable off-stage achievements include the 2007 BET Humanitarian Award for the cause of the people of Darfur and Rwanda, and sharing the Summit Peace Award by the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates in Rome with George Clooney for their work in Darfur.


Don Cheadle Talks Miles Davis and the Whiteness of Hollywood

He’d never make you feel bad for asking, but Don Cheadle has for a decade now been telling the same story about how he wound up directing and co-writing his first feature. In the highly unconventional biopic Miles Ahead, he plays Miles Davis (or rather the essence of Miles Davis, with the truths thrown up in the air and rearranged in the key of B-flat). When the iconic trumpeter was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006, reporters asked Davis’s nephew Vince Wilburn Jr. if the family was planning to make a movie of his uncle’s life.

Don Cheadle on playing Miles Davis and directing his first film

With his turn as the real-life humanitarian Paul Rusesabagina in 2004’s Hotel Rwanda, Don Cheadle earned an Academy Award nomination and further established his reputation as one of Hollywood’s most reliable actors. Cheadle’s filmography reads like a case study in character versatility. Since his debut in 1985’s Moving Violations, the actor’s choice of characters runs the gamut from guy who Tommy Lee Jones talked to/yelled at a lot in Volcano to kindhearted cowboy porn star Buck Swope in Boogie Nights.

‘It has to be hot. It has to be creative’: Don Cheadle on his 10-year quest to play Miles Davis

Don Cheadle seems as if he’s at the end of his rope, metaphorically speaking. We’re in the Spare Room, a hybrid bar and bowling alley in the upper levels of the historic Hollywood Roosevelt hotel in Los Angeles. It’s a classic mid-century establishment, full of character and intimations of film noir mystery.

Don Cheadle Will Carry Your Crutches, and 31 Other Things We Learned From Hanging Out With Him

When you've spent well more than a decade interviewing celebrities, you learn how to spot the good ones — meaning the ones who will still treat you like a person when the cameras are gone and the tape recorder is off and the article is published.

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