Cuba Gooding Jr.: Best Movies, TV Shows, and Personal Life

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Cuba Gooding Jr. is an American actor who has been in the entertainment industry since 1984. He has starred in numerous movies and TV shows, receiving a great deal of recognition for his work. In this blog post, we will explore Cuba Gooding Jr.’s best movies and TV shows, as well as his personal life and family life. We will also discuss his impressive body of work and the awards he has won. By the end of this post, readers will have a better understanding of the life and career of this beloved actor.

cuba gooding jr

Highlights about Cuba Gooding Jr.

Full Name

Cuba Mark Gooding Jr

Born On

2nd January 1968 (Age: 54)


The Bronx, New York City, U.S.






1.78 m


Sara Kapfer (Married: 1994, Div : 2017)

Years Active

1986- Present


Mason Gooding

Piper Gooding

Spencer Gooding


Cuba Gooding Sr.

Shirley Sullivan

Awards and Nominations

Academy Award

Screen Actors Guild Award

Emmy Nomination

Net Worth

$ 12 Million

Early Life and Family of Cuba Gooding Jr

Cuba Gooding Jr. was born on January 2, 1968, in New York City’s Bronx to Cuba Gooding Sr. and Shirley Sullivan. His father, Cuba Gooding Sr., was the R&B group’s lead vocalist which had a record hit song “Everybody Plays the Fool”. His mother, Shirley Sullivan, was a backup singer for the group “The Sweethearts”.

In Granada Hills, Los Angeles, Gooding attended North Hollywood High School, Tustin High School, Apple Valley High School, and John F. Kennedy High School. At the age of 13, he experienced his “spiritual rebirth” for the first time.

Before turning to act, Cuba Gooding Jr. studied Japanese Martial Arts for three years. In 1994, he married his high school sweetheart, Sara Kapfer, with whom he later got separated.

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Career Beginnings

Cuba Gooding Jr. is an American actor and singer who rose to fame in the mid-1990s with his breakout role as Tre Styles in Boyz n the Hood. Since then, Gooding has become a staple of both film and television, appearing in a variety of blockbuster films, including Jerry Maguire, As Good As It Gets, Men of Honor, and American Gangster.

Gooding’s first acting job was in the 1989 movie Lock Up, but his big break came two years later when he was cast as Tre Styles in the 1991 classic Boyz n the Hood. His performance earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor and launched his career in Hollywood. From there, Gooding went on to star in a variety of popular films including A Few Good Men, What Dreams May Come, Rat Race, The Fighting Temptations, and Norbit.

In addition to his successful film career, Gooding has also enjoyed great success on television. He received a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for his performance as O.J. Simpson in American Crime Story. He also starred in the miniseries The Book of Negroes and had guest-starring roles on various shows such as Law & Order: SVU, NCIS: Los Angeles, and MacGyver.

Cuba Gooding Jr. Best Movies

Cuba Gooding Jr. has starred in several films that have become classics, earning him critical acclaim and a dedicated fan base. He first rose to fame with his Academy Award-winning performance as Rod Tidwell in the 1996 sports drama Jerry Maguire. Other notable films he has starred in include Boyz n the Hood (1991), Men of Honor (2000), Radio (2003), American Gangster (2007), Red Tails (2012), and Selma (2014).

His more recent films include the biographical drama The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story (2016), where he portrayed the titular character and earned his second Primetime Emmy nomination, and Ben Is Back (2018) alongside Julia Roberts. Most recently, Gooding Jr. appeared in the 2020 Netflix film The Trial of the Chicago 7, where he played the role of Bobby Seale.

Cuba Gooding Jr. Best TV shows

Cuba Gooding Jr. has made appearances in several television shows throughout his career. He was the star of the CBS courtroom drama series “The People v. O.J. Simpson”, playing the role of O.J. Simpson. He also starred in the Fox musical drama series “Star” as Jahil Rivera. Other notable television roles include guest-starring appearances on “Law & Order”, “Curb Your Enthusiasm”, and “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation”. Most recently, he appeared in the Netflix series “American Vandal” and the Hulu miniseries “The First”. In 2010, he also hosted the game show “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?” for two seasons.

Interesting Facts About Cuba Gooding Jr.

  • Gooding is an enthusiastic hockey player who reportedly has a rink in his yard.
  • Gooding was a popular student since his childhood. He was elected class President at three of his schools which is testimony to his leadership skills.
  • Gooding is a stage veteran who performed in the closing ceremony of the 1984 Olympics alongside Lionel Richie.
  • In 1996, Gooding won the prestigious Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Rod Tidwell in the movie Jerry Maguire. He is the first African-American Actor to win an Academy Award in this category.
  • Secured his position in the list of “Promising Actors of 1991” in John Willis’ Screen World.
  • He was Paula Abdul’s backup dancer.

The Final Words on Cuba Gooding Jr.

Cuba Gooding Jr. is a vivacious actor known for his few scene-stealing performances ranging from buffoonish comedies to action to drama and everything in between. His highly infectious performance as an arrogant football star in the award-winning “Jerry Maguire” in 1996 received equal praise from critics and audiences. Gooding still has a lot of work to do in living up to his newfound clout.

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