News Americas, NEW YORK, NY: Bronx-born, Cuba Gooding, Jr. is known globally for his acting roles such as A Few Good Men (1992), Lightning Jack (1994) and Outbreak (1995) but did you know Acaademy Award-winning actor Gooding, Jr. has roots to Barbados?
That’s right. Gooding’s paternal grandfather was Afro-Bajan. Cuba’s paternal grandparents were Dudley MacDonald Gooding and Addie Pearl Alston (the daughter of Robert Alston and Mattie May Edwards). Dudley was born in Barbados.
His father, Cuba Gooding, was the lead vocalist for the R&B group The Main Ingredient, which had a hit with the song “Everybody Plays The Fool.” His mother, Shirley, was a backup singer for The Sweethearts. His father moved the family to Los Angeles in 1972, only to leave them a few years later.
In 1996, Cuba was cast as an arrogant but loyal football player in the Tom Cruise-Cameron Crowe film Jerry Maguire (1996). The film became a huge box office smash and earned Cuba an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. His “Show Me The Money” line in the movie became a nationwide catchphrase. The role elevated him to superstar status, as many of Hollywood’s top producers began to “show him the money” to appear in their films. In 2002, he was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 2003 he won critical support for his portrayal of a mentally handicapped man in the heartwarming film Radio (2003), another movie about football.
Gooding, Jr. this week narrated Red Tails, Men of Honor on the Smithsonian Channel.