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LL Cool J

L.L. Cool J was born James Todd Smith on January 14, 1968, in Bay Shore, Long Island, New York, to Ondrea (Griffith) and James Smith. Todd, as he was called, did not have a very happy childhood. At the age of four, he saw his mother and grandfather shot by his own father. After they recovered from their injuries, his mother began to date a young physical therapist she met while in the hospital. The therapist treated Ondrea kindly, but for years he abused Todd physically and verbally, which resulted in Todd becoming a bully himself. It was during this period that he started wearing hats all the time (one of L.L. Cool J's trademarks is the fact that people never see him without a hat on--until recently). Fortunately, Ondrea finally discovered what this man was doing to her son and left him. As he grew older, Todd found a way to escape the effects of his abuse and his bullying attitude: hip-hop music. He fell in love with it at the age of nine, and by 11 he was writing lyrics and making his own songs with some DJ equipment his grandfather gave him. At 15, he and one of his best friends came up with his present stage name, L.L. Cool J, which means "Ladies Love Cool James." In 1984, when L.L. was 16, he met Rick Rubin, a student at NYU, who gave him his big break in music. Rick really liked L.L.'s music and decided to try to get him a record deal. Together, they made the single "I Need a Beat" and sent it to an artist manager named Russell Simmons. Simmons loved the single, and, in the same year, Rick and Russell co-founded the famous Def Jam Recordings; L.L.'s debut album, "Radio," released in 1985, after securing a distribution deal for Def Jam with Columbia/CBS Records, was the label's first long-playing release. Even today, L.L. is considered one of Def Jam's most prized possessions. 1985 was also the year L.L. started his acting career. He first appeared in Krush Groove (1985), which is a semi-biographical account of the early days of Def Jam Recordings. L.L. had a cameo appearance in the film. In 1986, L.L. also had a cameo appearance in the movie Wildcats (1986) and also wrote that movie's theme song. After that, L.L. took a break from film and concentrated more on his first love: music. His career took off, and after every one of his albums hit platinum-selling status, he was (and still is) regarded as one of the greatest hip-hop artists of all time. After a few years, he had small roles in a few other films, but was still better known for his music. All this changed in 1995. By this time he was a happily married 27-year-old with three children. His first starring film, Out-of-Sync (1995), had also been released. It didn't do very well at the box office, but it got him noticed by executives at NBC-TV, who wanted to give him a part in a sitcom they were going to air. This sitcom was In the House (1995), which showed L.L.'s acting ability; the show stayed on the air until 1999. He had been offered several films roles during the run of the show and decided to accept a part in Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998). Its success resulted in L.L. being cast in bigger and better film roles, and he has acted alongside actors such stars Whoopi Goldberg, Samuel L. Jackson, Jamie Lee Curtis, James Woods, Al Pacino, Omar Epps, Pam Grier, Stanley Tucci, and Dennis Quaid, to name a few. In 2000, he was finally rewarded for his acting talent. That year he won a Blockbuster Entertainment Award for the best supporting actor in the action film Deep Blue Sea (1999). Even though his film career has taken off, he hasn't forgotten his love of hip-hop music. In 1998, he was planning to retire from hip-hop and just concentrate on his film career, but he later decided to keep dividing his time between both fields. L.L. is not only known as one of the greatest MCs of all time, but he is also known as a great actor.


Read bio at Wikipedia
Born:
Jan 14, 1968 In Bay Shore, Long Island, New York, USA
Movie/TV Credits:
50
First Appeared:
In the series Saturday Night Live 1975-10-11
Latest Project:
Series Lip Sync Battle 2015-04-02

Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 8 wins & 19 nominations.

Known For
Poster of NCIS: Los Angeles
Filmography
Lip Sync Battle Self - Host / ... 86 episodes, 2015-2019 2015-04-02
The Late Late Show with James Corden Unknown 2015-03-23
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon Unknown 2014-02-17
The Arsenio Hall Show Unknown 2013-09-09
The Queen Latifah Show Unknown 2013
Brooklyn Nine-Nine Unknown 2013-09-17
Oprah Prime Unknown 2012-01-01
Steve Harvey Unknown 2012-09-04
Piers Morgan Live Unknown 2011-01-17
Hawaii Five-0 Unknown 2010-09-20
Conan Unknown 2010-11-08
WWII in HD Unknown 2009
NCIS: Los Angeles Sam Hanna 262 episodes, 2009-2020 2009-09-22
So You Think You Can Dance Canada Unknown 2008-09-11
50 Cent: The Money and the Power Unknown 2008-11-06
30 Rock Unknown 2006-10-11
Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern Unknown 2006-11-01
So You Think You Can Dance Unknown 2005
Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List Unknown 2005-08-03
Everybody Hates Chris Unknown 2005-09-22
Entourage Unknown 2004-07-18
CSI: NY Unknown 2004-09-22
House Unknown 2004-11-16
Project Runway Unknown 2004-12-01
MythBusters Unknown 2003-01-23
NCIS Unknown 2003-09-23
One Tree Hill Unknown 2003-09-23
Fashion Police Unknown 2002-02-27
Top of the Pops Unknown 2002-01-12
The Wire Unknown 2002-06-02
American Idol Unknown 2002-06-11
Crossing Jordan Unknown 2001-09-24
Soul Food Unknown 2000-06-28
The Challenge Unknown 1998-06-01
Oz Unknown 1997-07-12
The Chris Rock Show Unknown 1997-02-07
Daria Unknown 1997-03-03
Behind the Music Unknown 1997-08-17
The View Unknown 1997-08-11
The Daily Show Unknown 1996-07-22
Kenan & Kel Unknown 1996-08-17
In the House Marion Hill / ... 76 episodes, 1995-1999 1995-04-10
New York Undercover Unknown 1994-09-08
WWE Raw Unknown 1993-01-11
The Adventures of Pete & Pete Unknown 1993-11-28
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno Unknown 1992-05-25
In Living Color Unknown 1990-04-15
Wheel of Fortune Unknown 1983-09-19
CBS News Sunday Morning Unknown 1979
Saturday Night Live Unknown 1975-10-11