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Loretta Devine (1949)

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  Summary  

Loretta Devine is an American stage, film and television actress known for her roles on Boston Public, Grey's Anatomy, and Eli Stone. She also provided her voice for the stop motion animated television series The PJs. Devine is a NAACP Image Award and Emmy award winning actress.

  Biography  

 early life
Devine was born in Houston, Texas. Her mother, Eunice O'Neal (née Toliver), was a beautician, and her father, James Devine, worked as a laborer. She grew up in the Acres Homes area of Houston. She was very active on the pep squad, and performed in talent shows at George Washington Carver High School. Devine graduated from the University of Houston in 1971 with a Bachelor of Arts in Speech and Drama and Brandeis University in 1976 with a MFA in Theater. Devine was initiated into the Epsilon Lambda Chapter of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

 career
Devine appeared in the 1978 flop A Broadway Musical, which closed after one performance. She captured attention in Dreamgirls, a Broadway musical loosely based on the history of The Supremes, in which she originated the role of Lorrell Robinson . It premiered on December 20, 1981 and ran for over 1500 performances; it eventually won six Tony awards. Minor roles for Devine followed in films such as Little Nikita and Stanley & Iris. She has a cameo performance in the film version of Dreamgirls.

She was a repertory character in the play The Colored Museum with Vickilyn Reynolds. They both went on to play sisters in the short-lived TV series Sugar and Spice. During the period between the play and the series, Devine appeared in the first season of the TV series A Different World as Stevie Rallen, dormitory director at fictional Hillman College.

In 1995, she landed a high-profile role as Gloria Matthews in Waiting to Exhale, joined in the cast by Whitney Houston, Gregory Hines, and Angela Bassett, among others. The role earned her an NAACP Image Award for Best Supporting Actress, as did her next movie, The Preacher's Wife, her second movie with Houston and Hines.

In 2000, Devine took on the role of impassioned high school teacher Marla Hendricks on the Fox TV drama Boston Public. Devine won three more Image Awards for her work in the series. She also continued to work in film, playing prominent roles in Urban Legend, Urban Legends: Final Cut, and I Am Sam. Devine earned yet another Image Award nomination and an Independent Spirit Award nomination for her work in the 2004 film Woman Thou Art Loosed. She also appeared in the 2005 Academy Awards Best Picture winning film Crash. She also played Rochelle's mother, Maxine, who's always picking on her, on the sitcom, Everybody Hates Chris.

In 2007, she appeared in This Christmas, a Screen Gems production co-starring Delroy Lindo, Mekhi Phifer, and Regina King.

Devine also appeared in Grey's Anatomy as Dr. Richard Webber's wife, Adele Webber and in 2011 she was nominated for an Emmy Award for her performance, which she won.

Devine played Patti on Eli Stone, an ABC television series which began airing in 2008.

In 2009, Devine played the character of Jeanette in the rejected pilot for the David E. Kelly television series that was supposed to air on NBC, Legally Mad. Devine also recently appeared on Cold Case.

In 2011, She had played the role of Aunt Honey on ABC Family's original comedy State of Georgia alongside Raven Symone and Majandra Delfino.

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  Sources

Whole or part of the information contained in this card come from the Wikipedia article "Loretta Devine", licensed under CC-BY-SA full list of contributors here.