Was an All-American wrestler in high school and college.
Worked as a computer programmer before being discovered by a talent agent when he accompanied a friend to a modeling convention in Dallas, and was persuaded to move to Los Angeles to pursue acting, even though he had no prior acting experience.
Big break came in 2007 when Denzel Washington cast him in The Great Debaters, which Washington was directing.
Made his screenwriting and directorial debut with The Birth of a Nation at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival; the movie sold to Fox Searchlight for $17.5 million, establishing a record price for an acquisition at Sundance.
In March 2016, announced the fall opening of the Nate Parker School of Film and Drama at Wiley College in Marshall, Texas.
2016, Sundance Film Festival — U.S. Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic: Winner
2016, Sundance Film Festival — Audience Award: U.S. Dramatic: Winner
2016, Directors Guild of America Awards — Outstanding Directorial Achievement in First-Time Feature Film: Nominee
Sarah DiSanto — Wife
Carolyn Whitfield — Mother
Walter Whitfield — Stepfather
Justice — Daughter
Attended Pennsylvania State University, State College, Pennsylvania, United States; University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, United States (BS in Computer Programming, 2003)