- At age 13, studied acting at the Education Theater Company in New York and appeared in sex-education skits.
- After graduating from college, spent some time in India studying yoga.
- Made her feature-film debut in Our Song (2000), a movie about teen pregnancy. A year later, gained popularity portraying a teen mother in Save the Last Dance (2001).
- Won an Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture in 2005 for her role as Della, Ray Charles' wife, opposite Jamie Foxx in Ray.
- Made her Broadway debut in 2009, starring in David Mamet's Race.
- Is an adviser for V-Day, an organization dedicated to ending violence against women and girls.
- 2004, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture: Nominee
- 2013, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Nominee
- 2013, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
- 2014, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Nominee
- 2014, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee
- David Moscow — Ex-fiancé
- Nnamdi Asomugha — Husband
- Isabelle Amarachi Asomugha — Daughter
- George Washington University, Washington, District of Columbia, United States (BFA in Theater, 1998)
Season 3, Episode 18
- Birth Place: Bronx, New York, United States
- Birthday: January 31, 1977, Aquarius
- Profession: Actor
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