Aunjanue Ellis

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Aunjanue Ellis
Born (1969-02-21) February 21, 1969 (age 45)
San Francisco, California, U.S.

Aunjanue L. Ellis (first name pronounced on-zsa-new) born February 21, 1969) is an American actress known for her roles in Ray, Undercover Brother, The Mentalist and The Help.

Ellis was born in San Francisco, California, and raised on her grandmother's farm in Mississippi.[1] She attended Tougaloo College before transferring to Brown University, where she completed her Bachelor of Arts in African-American studies, while also studying acting with Jim Barnhill and John Emigh. She went on to study acting in the Graduate Acting Program at New York University.[2] She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.[3]

In 1995, she appeared as Ariel opposite Patrick Stewart's Prospero in a Broadway revival of William Shakespeare's The Tempest.[4]

In January 2004, she performed in Regina Taylor's play Drowning Crow, at the Manhattan Theatre Club.[5]

In the Spring, 2012 Hampton University semester, she was going to be teaching entertainment industry courses. She will also be featured in a Hampton Players and Company production, "Through the Crack."[6]

Awards and nominations[edit]


Year Title Role Notes
1995 New York Undercover
1996 Girls Town
1996 Ed's Next Move
1996 High Incident
1998 Side Streets
1998 Desert Blue
1999 In Too Deep
1999 A Map of the World
The Practice (4 episodes)
Third Watch (2 episodes)
2000 Men of Honor
HBO First Look (1 episode)
The Opponent
Disappearing Acts
The Caveman's Valentine
Access Granted (1 episode)
100 Centre Street (3 episodes)
Lovely & Amazing
Undercover Brother
MDs (10 episodes)
Brother to Brother Zora Neale Hurston
Jonny Zero (6 episodes)
E-Ring (11 episodes)
Justice (8 episodes)
Law & Order: Criminal Intent (1 episode)
2007 Cover
Numb3rs (1 episode)
True Blood
Racing for Time
The Border (1 episode)
The Hungry Ghosts
The Tested
Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story
2009 The Taking of Pelham 123
2010 – present The Mentalist Special Agent Madeleine Hightower (recurring role)
Game of Death 2010
The Resident 2011
The Help 2011
Money Matters 2011
Missing 2012
Abducted: The Carlina White Story 2012
NCIS: Los Angeles 2012 & 2013 as Michelle Hanna


External links[edit]