Jamie Foxx was given a different name at birth...
Jamie Foxx is an actor, musician AND a writer…basically he’s got the lot! Check out these 11 things you didn’t know about the US star…
Adopted as a baby
Eric Marlon Bishop, as Jamie was named at birth, was adopted by his maternal grandmother at just seven months old and he admits he still wonders ‘why my parents didn’t want me’. He lived with his grandmother in a house just around the corner from his birth mother, but had very little contact with her and considers his grandparents his ‘real’ family.
He started out with Jim Carrey
Jamie, now 47, kicked off his career in 90s comedy show In Living Color – the same show that gave Jim Carrey his first break. Jamie was such a hit with viewers that when he left, the Fox network offered him his own self-titled show from 1996-2001.
Cunning career move
When Jamie – or Eric as he was still known then – started performing at comedy open mic nights in 1989, he noticed female comedians would often be called to the stage before male performers. So he changed his forename to the gender-neutral Jamie and chose his surname in honour of his favourite comedian Red Foxx.
He started in comedy, but is now best known for acting in films like Ray, Django Unchained and Law Abiding Citizen. He’s also an award-winning musician – in the last 10 years he’s released three albums and worked with the likes of Ne-Yo, TI, Kanye West and Justin Timberlake.
In 2003, Jamie and his younger sister Deidra Dixon, then 25, were arrested at a New Orleans casino after they allegedly refused to show their ID cards and became confrontational when asked to leave. Police were called and it was reported the siblings had to be subdued with pepper spray. Jamie has revealed he’s felt unfairly targeted by police in the past, saying: ‘As a black man, I fear certain cops when
I’m pulled over.’
Jamie’s one of only six celebs with both an Oscar for acting – for his role as Ray Charles in Ray – and a Billboard No 1 album. The others are Cher, Barbra Streisand,
Bing Crosby, Shirley Jones and Frank Sinatra.
Jamie’s two daughters Corinne, 21, and Annalise, six, have different mums, but he’s never revealed their identities. He’s every inch the proud dad though, and even brought Corinne with him to the Oscars in 2004 when he won.
In 2012, Jamie had what might just be the most hardcore New Year’s Eve ever. He first celebrated in Australia, then flew to Las Vegas to do it all over again!
Support for his sister
Jamie’s sister Diondra Dixon, 31, has Down’s syndrome and provided inspiration to others after Jamie cast her in the video for his 2008 single Blame It (On The Alcohol). Jamie says of his sis: ‘One thing people may not understand is that the person with special needs, the love that they give you is unfiltered.’ Aww.
He got his horse into acting!
One of Jamie’s past birthday presents was a horse named Cheetah, which came in very handy when he filmed Django Unchained in 2011. A horse was needed to play Django’s trusty steed Tony and Jamie promptly got Cheetah the part. Despite having no previous acting experience, Cheetah took to the role like a natural.
Foxx vs Tyson
Jamie met Mike Tyson when he rocked up to the comedy club he was performing at. There was just one problem: Jamie’s routine contained a joke about the boxer. Jamie recalls: ‘I get to my Mike Tyson joke, I’m about to kill it and it’s complete silence because he’s in the audience. This is back in the time when Mike was knocking people out for having the wrong shirt.’ Jamie went ahead and told the joke and luckily Mike saw the funny side. ‘He said: “You’re so funny, I want to hang out with you,”’ reveals Jamie. Phew!