Djimon Hounsou

Biography: Although his family sent him to France at age 13 to pursue a better life, the Benin-born Hounsou soon dropped out of school and ended up homeless on the streets of Paris. A chance meeting with a photographer led to an introduction to fashion designer Thierry Mugler, who, taken with the teen's impressive physique and exotic features, turned him into a model. In his twenties, Hounsou decided he wanted to add acting to his résumé, so he relocated to the U.S., popping up in a number of early '90s music videos (Madonna's "Express Yourself," Paula Abdul's "Straight Up") and small movie roles (Stargate). Then in 1997, Hounsou exploded onto the Hollywood scene as the leader of a slave-ship mutiny in Steven Spielberg's historical drama Amistad. (Coincidentally, Hounsou played an identical role in the little-seen indie Ill Gotten Gains, which was inspired by the same events.) For his searing and scary performance in Amistad, Hounsou earned an Image Award and a Golden Globe nomination.Although his family sent him to France at age 13 to pursue a better life, the Benin-born Hounsou soon dropped out of school and ended up homeless on the streets of Paris. A chance meeting with a photographer led to an introduction to fashion designer Thierry Mugler, who, taken with the teen's impressive physique and exotic features, turned him into a model. In his twenties, Hounsou decided he wanted to add acting to his résumé, so he relocated to the U.S., popping up in a number of early '90s music videos (Madonna's "Express Yourself," Paula Abdul's "Straight Up") and small movie roles (Stargate). Then in 1997, Hounsou exploded onto the Hollywood scene as the leader of a slave-ship mutiny in Steven Spielberg's historical drama Amistad. (Coincidentally, Hounsou played an identical role in the little-seen indie Ill Gotten Gains, which was inspired by the same events.) For his searing and scary performance in Amistad, Hounsou earned an Image Award and a Golden Globe nomination. For the next few years, he alternated between the big and small screens, turning in unforgettable work with a recurring role on ER as a tortured African immigrant seeking political asylum, and a stoic supporting turn as Russell Crowe's friend and fellow fighter in Gladiator. In 2002, Hounsou was finally recognized by the Academy when he earned his first Oscar nod for his role as an AIDS-afflicted painter in In America. Although he went unrecognized for many of his subsequent high-profile projects (Biker Boyz, The Island), his intense turn as a poor fisherman searching for salvation in the form of a pink gem in 2006's Blood Diamond earned Hounsou his second Academy Award nomination. Concerned with the impact of global warming, particularly on Africa, he opened a summit on climate change at the United Nations in 2009. Expand

Djimon Hounsou's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average career score: 51
Highest Metascore: 76 Guardians of the Galaxy
Lowest Metascore: 30 Seventh Son
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 32
  2. Negative: 10 out of 32
32 movie reviews
Title: Year: Credit: User score:
37 Serenity Jan 25, 2019 Principal Cast / Duke 4.6
33 Air Aug 14, 2015 Cartwright 5.5
38 The Vatican Tapes Jul 24, 2015 Vicar Imani / Vicar Imani 4.0
30 Seventh Son Feb 6, 2015 Radu / Radu tbd
34 Baggage Claim Sep 27, 2013 Cast / Principal Cast / Quinton / Quinton Jamison 4.5
37 Special Forces Oct 12, 2012 Kovax 6.0
36 Push Feb 6, 2009 Henry Carver 7.0
38 Eragon Dec 15, 2006 Ajihad 3.4
36 Biker Boyz Jan 31, 2003 Motherland / Motherland tbd