Family & Companions
Tall, shapely, comely--and determined, Lela Rochon jumped to the head of casting lists after the success of "Waiting to Exhale," in which she was Robin, the woman who wants a man, but ends up as the type they only want to score with.
Rochon began modeling and acting while still in college and appeared as one of the "girls" surrounding the dog Spuds MacKenzie in numerous Bud Light beer commercials. She made her TV acting debut in "A Bunny's Tale" (1985), played a recurring role on the sitcom "Better Days" (CBS, 1986), appeared on the NBC daytime soap "Generations" and made numerous guest appearances on shows like "227," "Hangin' With Mr. Cooper" and "The Cosby Show" in which she played a pregnant teen. In 1995, she landed the regular role of Lisa, girlfriend to Shawn Wayans, on The WB sitcom "The Wayans Bros.," leaving the show after six months to concentrate on her feature film career.
Rochon made her big screen debut opposite Fred Williamson (who also directed) in the low-budget action film "Foxtrap" (1985). She did featured turns in Eddie Murphy's "Harlem Nights" (1989), as Sunshine, and in "Boomerang" (1992) as the attractive, dog-loving girl Murphy picks up and then, after intimacy, flees from in disgust when he sees she has ugly corns on her feet. Her breakthrough role was Robin in Forest Whitaker's "Waiting to Exhale" (1995). Initially turned down for an audition, Rochon turned to a friend of author and co-scenarist Terry McMillan and asked if McMillan would arrange for an audition with director Forest Whitaker. McMillan did and Rochon won the role and critical kudos. She played her first lead in the made-for-cable TV-movie "Mr. and Mrs. Loving" (Showtime, 1996). Set in the 1960s, it tells the story of a Southern interracial couple (Rochon and Timothy Hutton) who are jailed for miscegenation. Rochon also landed the role of an aide to the governor who helps a young lawyer (Chris O'Donnell) in James Foley's feature version of John Grisham's best-selling "The Chamber" (1996). In 2001, Rochon was cast as Inspector Angela Reide in the Lifetime series "The Division."
Cast (Feature Film)
Cast (TV Mini-Series)
While still in college, appeared in over 20 Spuds MacKenzie Bud Light TV commercials (dates approx.)
Made feature acting debut opposite Fred Williamson in "Foxtrap"
TV acting debut, small role in "A Bunny's Tale" (ABC)
First collaboration with Eddie Murphy, "Harlem Nights"
Co-starred with Murphy in "Boomerang" as Christie, the girl with the ugly feet
Played Lisa on The WB sitcom "The Wayans Brothers"
Breakthrough screen role, co-starred as high-powered executive Robin in "Waiting to Exhale"
Starred in ABC movie "The Ruby Bridges Story" as title character's mother
Cast as Jamie Foxx's girlfriend in Oliver Stone's "Any Given Sunday"
Landed role on Lifetime series "The Division"; billed as Lela Rochon Fuqua; left show after first season
Appeared in romantic comedy "First Daughter," starring Katie Holmes
Directed by husband Antoine Fuqua in crime drama "Brooklyn's Finest"