Paula Patton

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Paula Patton
Paula Patton by Gage Skidmore.jpg
Patton in 2015
Paula Maxine Patton

(1975-12-05) December 5, 1975 (age 47)
Other namesMax
Alma materUniversity of Southern California (BA)
  • Actress
  • singer
  • songwriter
Years active2004–present
(m. 2005; div. 2015)

Paula Maxine Patton (born December 5, 1975)[1] is an American actress and producer. Patton made her feature film debut in the 2005 comedy Hitch, and has had starring roles in the films Déjà Vu (2006), Precious (2009), Jumping the Broom (2011), Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011), 2 Guns (2013), Warcraft (2016), and Sacrifice (2019).

Early life and education[edit]

Patton was born in Los Angeles, California, to Joyce (née Vanraden), a school teacher, and Charles Patton, a lawyer. Her mother is white, of German and Dutch descent,[2] and her father is Black of African descent.[3][4][5] She graduated from Alexander Hamilton High School, and then started college at University of California, Berkeley, transferring to University of Southern California's Film School after her first year. Shortly after completing her studies, she won a three-month assignment making documentaries for PBS.[6][7]


Patton provided additional vocals for Usher on his 2004 album Confessions. She provided the female vocal counterpart on the song "Can U Handle It?" which was co-written by Robin Thicke, whom she would later marry.[8] Patton has song-writing credits on multiple Robin Thicke albums under the name "Max", derived from her middle name (Maxine). Patton made her film debut with a small part in the 2005 romantic comedy film Hitch, alongside Will Smith.[9] In the same year, she followed that with a small part in the drama film London. In 2006, she appeared alongside OutKast members Andre Benjamin and Big Boi in the musical film Idlewild written and directed by Bryan Barber.[10]

Patton's big break came in 2006 when she landed the pivotal female lead role of Claire Kuchever in the science fiction thriller Déjà Vu alongside Denzel Washington.[11] The film received mixed reviews from critics, but was a box office hit, grossing over US$180 million worldwide.[12] She also appeared in her then-husband Robin Thicke's "Lost Without You" video in 2006.[13] In an interview with Hot 97 Paula revealed on Ebro in the Morning that she ghostwrote with her ex-husband Robin Thicke under the name Max Haddington. In 2008, Patton played television reporter Kate Madison in the comedy-drama Swing Vote alongside Kevin Costner and Amy Carson, the wife of Ben (Kiefer Sutherland) in the supernatural horror film Mirrors. In Lee Daniels's critically acclaimed drama film Precious (2009), she played Ms. Blu Rain, a teacher at the alternative high school in Harlem, New York, who teaches and mentors disadvantaged students, including the titular character, Claireece Precious Jones (Gabourey Sidibe). She later co-starred as Queen Latifah's character's god-sister in the romantic comedy Just Wright (2010).[14]

Patton with Tom Cruise and Anil Kapoor at the screening of Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol in 2011

In late 2010, it was announced that Patton would succeed Sharon Stone as the new full time assistant district attorney on the NBC crime drama series, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.[15][16] When Patton was cast in the lead female role in action film Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, however, her role on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit was reduced to one episode. She was replaced by Melissa Sagemiller.[17] Mission: Impossible was released on December 16, 2011, and was a critical and commercial success, grossing almost US$700 million worldwide.[18] Also in 2011, Patton played the leading role in the comedy film Jumping the Broom.[19][20]

In 2013, Patton co-starred alongside Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg in the action comedy film 2 Guns, and starred in the leading role in the romantic comedy film Baggage Claim. The latter film received negative reviews from numerous critics.[21] On February 24, 2015, it was announced that Patton was cast as lead character in the ABC crime drama pilot Runner.[22][23] It was not picked up to series.

In 2016, Patton starred in the romantic comedy film The Perfect Match, alongside Terrence Jenkins and Cassie Ventura, appeared alongside Adam Sandler and David Spade in direct-to-Netflix comedy film The Do-Over,[24][25] and starred as Garona Halforcen in the Warcraft film adaptation, released in June.[26]

In January 2017, Patton was cast in the lead role of the ABC drama series Somewhere Between, which premiered as a mid-season replacement on July 24, 2017, and was cancelled after one season.[27] In 2019, she starred in the BET+ first original film, Sacrifice.[28]

Personal life[edit]

In 1991, at age 15, Patton met recording artist Robin Thicke, who was then 14, at an under-21 hip-hop club called Balistyx (co-founded and co-hosted by David Faustino) on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles, when Thicke asked her to dance.[29][30] According to Thicke, he sang Stevie Wonder's "Jungle Fever" to her as they danced.[30] The couple did not begin dating until October 1993[31] and married on June 11, 2005. Patton gave birth to their son, Julian Fuego, on April 6, 2010.[32] They announced their separation on February 24, 2014, after 21 years together and almost nine years of marriage.[33][34][35] On October 8, 2014, Patton officially filed for divorce and joint custody of their son.[36] The divorce was finalized on March 20, 2015.[37]

In January 2017, a judge denied Patton's request to limit Thicke's custody after she accused him of child abuse.[38] Later that month, Patton was granted sole custody and a restraining order that included their son Julian and her mother Joyce Patton against Thicke after she accused him of domestic violence, infidelity, and drug and alcohol addiction. Patton and Thicke reached a custody agreement in August 2017.[39]


Year Title Role Notes
2005 Hitch Mandy
2005 London Alex
2006 Idlewild Angel Davenport / Sally B. Shelly
2006 Déjà Vu Claire Kuchever
2008 Mirrors Amy Carson
2008 Swing Vote Kate Madison
2009 Precious Ms. Blu Rain
2010 Just Wright Morgan Alexander
2011 Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol Jane Carter
2011 Jumping the Broom Sabrina Watson
2012 Disconnect Cindy Hull
2013 2 Guns Deb
2013 Mercy Cynthia Short film
2013 Baggage Claim Montana Moore
2014 About Last Night Allison
2016 Past Forward Pursuing Photographer #2 Short film
2016 The Perfect Match Sherry Also producer
2016 The Do-Over Heather Fishman
2016 Warcraft Garona Halforcen
2018 Traffik Brea Also producer
2019 Sacrifice Daniella Hernandez
2020 Four Kids and It Alice
Year Title Role Notes
2005 Murder Book Det. Angela Kellogg Unsold TV pilot
2010 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit A.D.A. Mikka Von Episode: "Wet"
2012 Single Ladies Layla Twilight Episodes: "The Business of Friendship" and "Fast Love"
2013 Sesame Street Herself Episode: "Best House of the Year"
2015 Runner Lauren Marks Unsold TV pilot
2015 Project Runway Herself / Guest Judge Episode: "Haute Tech Couture"
2017 Somewhere Between Laura Price Main role; 10 episodes
2021 Sacrifice Daniella Hernandez Main role; 10 episodes
2022 The Devil's Promise (وعد إبليس) Jennifer Main role; 6 episodes

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2007 Black Reel Award Best Breakthrough Performance Déjà Vu Nominated
2009 Best Supporting Actress Precious Nominated
Boston Society of Film Critics Award Best Cast Won
Critics' Choice Movie Award Best Acting Ensemble Nominated
NAACP Image Award Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture Nominated
Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award Best Ensemble Nominated
2012 Alliance of Women Film Journalists Awards Kick Ass Award for Best Female Action Star Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol Nominated
Saturn Award Best Supporting Actress Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice Movie Actress: Action Nominated
NAACP Image Award Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture Jumping the Broom Nominated


  1. ^ "Paula Patton - Actress". The website. A&E Networks. Archived from the original on April 2, 2019. Retrieved January 20, 2019.
  2. ^ "Paula Patton Talks Race". Karen Hunter Show (Interview). Interviewed by Karen Hunter. December 5, 2018. Archived from the original on October 8, 2022. Retrieved October 8, 2022.{{cite interview}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  3. ^ Fischer, Paul (August 1, 2008). "Exclusive Interview : Paula Patton". Archived from the original on August 9, 2016. Retrieved June 19, 2017.
  4. ^ Oksenhorn, Stewart (September 30, 2009). "Paula Patton offers 'Precious' performance, earns Aspen Film honor". The Aspen Times. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  5. ^ Evans, Rory (January 26, 2010). "Paula Patton: Precious star Paula Patton reveals all". Women's Health. Retrieved August 25, 2019.
  6. ^ Cammila Collar (2014). "Paula Patton". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Archived from the original on August 11, 2014. Retrieved August 6, 2014.
  7. ^ "Paula Patton Biography". TV Guide. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  8. ^ "Confessions: Usher". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved April 10, 2019.
  9. ^ "5 Things You Don't Know About Paula Patton". Entertainment Tonight. August 26, 2013. Retrieved May 18, 2018.
  10. ^ "IDLEWILD: An Interview with Paula Patton". August 2006. Retrieved October 10, 2014.
  11. ^ Murray, Rebecca. "Paula Patton Talks About "Deja Vu"". Archived from the original on October 13, 2008. Retrieved October 10, 2014.
  12. ^ "Deja Vu (2006)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved February 25, 2015.
  13. ^ Robin Thicke - Lost Without U on YouTube
  14. ^ "Just Wright". Rotten Tomatoes. May 14, 2010. Retrieved March 23, 2018.
  15. ^ O'Connor, Mickey (July 21, 2010). "Precious Star Paula Patton Is Law & Order: SVU's New ADA". TV Guide. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  16. ^ Ausiello, Michael (June 23, 2010). "'Law & Order: SVU' exclusive: 'Precious' star circling new ADA post". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved September 9, 2019.
  17. ^ Harnick, Chris (September 10, 2010). "Melissa Sagemiller to Replace Paula Patton on 'Law and Order: SVU'". Retrieved October 4, 2010.
  18. ^ "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (2011)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  19. ^ "Jumping the Broom (2011) - Box Office Mojo". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved December 26, 2018.
  20. ^ "Movie Projector: 'Thor' to hammer competition at the box office". Los Angeles Times. May 5, 2011. Retrieved December 21, 2018.
  21. ^ "Baggage Claim". Rotten Tomatoes. September 27, 2013. Retrieved March 23, 2018.
  22. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (February 24, 2015). "Paula Patton Cast As Lead In ABC Pilot 'Runner' - Deadline". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  23. ^ Wagmeister, Elizabeth (February 24, 2015). "Paula Patton Lands Lead Role In ABC Drama Pilot 'Runner'". Variety. Retrieved February 25, 2015.
  24. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (June 1, 2015). "Paula Patton Joins Adam Sandler & David Spade In Netflix Comedy 'The Do Over'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  25. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (July 1, 2015). "Terrence Jenkins, Paula Patton to Star in 'The Perfect Match' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 9, 2018.
  26. ^ Collura, Scott (December 4, 2013). "Ben Foster and Dominic Cooper Head for Warcraft". IGN. Retrieved July 9, 2019.
  27. ^ Stanhope, Kate; Goldberg, Lesley (January 26, 2017). "Paula Patton to Star in ABC Straight-to-Series Drama 'Somewhere Between'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 9, 2018.
  28. ^ Nolfi, Joey (November 27, 2019). "Exclusive: Paula Patton is a boss lady you DON'T want to cross in wild 'Sacrifice' trailer". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved February 17, 2020.
  29. ^ "Robin Thicke Interview". The Howard Stern Show. August 29, 2013. Sirius XM Satellite Radio. Howard 100.
  30. ^ a b "V-Intimate Nights with Robin Thicke! Q & A". V-Intimate Nights. July 2, 2012. Clear Channel Communications. V101.5 FM (WSOL-FM) (Jacksonville, Florida).
  31. ^ Penn, Charli (December 21, 2011). "Exclusive: Robin Thicke on Loving Black Women, Interracial Dating, and Pleasing Paula". Essence. Retrieved July 3, 2019.
  32. ^ Cruz, Anne Marie (April 7, 2010). "Robin Thicke and Paula Patton Welcome a Son". People. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  33. ^ Duke, Alan (February 24, 2014). "Robin Thicke and Paula Patton 'mutually' decide to split". CNN. Archived from the original on August 10, 2017. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
  34. ^ Clark, Cindy (February 25, 2014). "Robin Thicke, Paula Patton announce split". USA Today. Retrieved March 1, 2014.
  35. ^ "Robin Thicke and Paula Patton 'mutually' decide to split". CNN. February 24, 2014. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
  36. ^ McAfee, Tierney (October 8, 2014). "Paula Patton Files For Divorce From Robin Thicke". Hollywood Life. Retrieved August 18, 2018.
  37. ^ Oldenburg, Ann (March 20, 2015). "Robin Thicke, Paula Patton divorce finalized". The Hamilton Spectator. Retrieved March 20, 2015.
  38. ^ Chiu, Melody (January 12, 2017). "Paula Patton Accuses Robin Thicke of Abusively Spanking Their Son, Judge Denies Her Request to Limit Custody". People. Retrieved December 26, 2018.
  39. ^ Chiu, Melody (August 18, 2017). "Robin Thicke and Paula Patton End Custody Battle over 7-Year-Old Son Julian". People. Retrieved December 26, 2018.

External links[edit]