Who is Kenn Whitaker?

Kenneth Dwayne ‘Kenn’ Whitaker was born in Longview, Texas USA, on 8 June 1963 – his zodiac sign’s Gemini, and he holds American nationality. He’s an actor and singer, with only seven acting credits to his name, while he’s perhaps still known best for his portrayal of Henchman #1 in the 1998 romantic comedy movie “Bulworth”, written and directed by Warren Beatty, who also starred in it alongside Halle Berry and Kimberly Deauna Adams. It follows a suicidal liberal politician who’s paid an assassin to kill him; the movie won one of the 22 awards for which it was nominated, including an Oscar nomination for Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen.

Kenn’s also known for being a younger brother of famous American actor Forest Steven Whitaker.

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Early life and education

Kenn was raised in Longview alongside Forest and their brother Damon and sister Deborah, by their father Forest E. Whitaker Jr. who was an insurance salesman, and their mother Laura Francis (nee Smith) who earned two Master’s degrees while Kenn was growing up.

He studied at Palisades Charter High School and was interested in a couple of activities during his four years there, as he enjoyed playing sports with his friends, practiced acting with the school’s drama club, and took dancing lessons.

Kenn matriculated in 1981, and although he hasn’t spoken of his further education, most people believe that Kenn enrolled at college, from which he graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in 1985.

He spent the following 12 years working various jobs and staying away from the media’s attention, prior to launching his career in the film industry.

Career as an actor

Kenn made his debut film appearance in the 1997 action thriller “Most Wanted”, directed by David Hogan, and which starred Keenen Ivory Wayans, Jon Voight and Robert Kotecki. It follows a US military officer who’s recruited a Marine on death row for a top-secret operation, while the Marine’s now been framed for the killing of the First Lady; the movie won one of the two awards for which it was nominated.

The following year saw Kenn make his debut TV series appearance, playing Second Smoking Man in the episode “Smoking” of the comedy “Tracey Takes On…”, while he then played Detention Center Guard in the 1999 episode “Whatever Works” of the popular family series “Party of Five”.

Kenn portrayed Isaac in the critically acclaimed 1999 crime comedy movie “Life”, directed by Ted Demme, and which starred Eddie Murphy, Martin Lawrence and Obba Babatunde. It follows two strangers who were wrongfully convicted in 1932, and became friends in jail; the movie won one of the eight awards for which it was nominated, including an Oscar nomination for Best Makeup.

Kenn’s only two other roles were in 2001, in the mystery crime movie “The Theory of the Leisure Class” and the  crime film “Last Days”.

He’s been staying away from media since his role in “Last Days”, and it remains unknown what Kenn’s since been doing for a living.

Other credits

Kenn wrote three songs and performed “I Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere” in the 1993 action movie “Strapped”

Love life and relationships

Kenn prefers to keep the details of his love life away from the media’s attention, but it’s still widely known that he’s today a married man. He married non-celebrity American LaTanya Whitaker on 4 June 2000, and while neither has spoken about how and when they met, it’s believed that they were set up on a blind date in 1991; they have two daughters together, but as both Kenn and LaTanya prefer to keep them away from media, neither the girls’ birthdates nor names are known.

Kenn hasn’t mentioned any other women whom he’s perhaps been with, and as of September 2022, he’s married to LaTanya Whitaker, and has two daughters with her.

Hobbies and other interests

Kenn’s active on Instagram and is today followed by close to 1,000 people, while he’s uploaded over 70 pictures onto the network, the majority of which have been taken during his everyday life.

He was physically quite active during his 20s and 30s, as he had multiple training sessions at the gym every week, while he rarely works out nowadays.

Kenn’s passionate about travelling and has been to various US states, for both work and pleasure, while he’s also vacationed in a couple of European and Asian countries; his dream travel destination’s Berlin, Germany.

He has his own favorite actors and actresses, some of whom are Will Smith, Robert De Niro and Helena Bonham Carter, while a couple of his favorite movies are “Bad Boys”, “The Sleepers” and “Fight Club”.

Age, height and net worth

Kenn’s age is 59. He’s bald and has brown eyes, his height is 6ft (1.83m) and he weighs around 175lbs (80kgs).

As of September 2022, Kenn’s net worth’s been estimated at over $1 million, and his brother Forest’s at more than $25 million.

Who is his brother Forest?

Forest was born in Longview on 15 July 1961 – his zodiac sign’s Cancer, and he holds American nationality. He’s an actor, film writer and director, with more than 130 acting credits to his name, while he’s perhaps still known best for his portrayal of the lead character Idi Amin in the critically acclaimed 2006 biographical historical movie “The Last King of Scotland”, directed by Kevin Macdonald, and which also starred James McAvoy and Gillian Anderson. It’s the story of the Ugandan Dictator Idi’s regime, told by a man who was his personal physician in the ‘70s, and the movie won 50 awards, including an Oscar for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role (Forest), while it was nominated for 32 other awards.

Forest was raised in Longview and studied at Palisades Charter High School, at which he was mostly interested in playing football with his peers, and singing with the school choir. He matriculated in 1979 and then enrolled at California State Polytechnic University, Ponoma having been offered a football scholarship; having suffered an injury that ended his football dreams, Forest took singing as his major, and later switched to drama. He transferred to the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music in 1981, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in acting in 1982; Forest also practiced acting at Drama Studio London in England.

He made his debut TV series appearance in the 1982 episode “Marriage, Dave Style” of the comedy “Making the Grade”, and his debut film appearance in the 1982 action thriller “Tag: The Assassination Game”. The year 1985 saw Forest star as Cuffey in the popular historical romantic mini-series “North & South: Book 1, North & South”, created by Douglas Heyes, and which also starred Kirstie Alley and Georg Stanford Brown. It follows two men who are struggling to stay friends at the beginning of the American Civil War; the mini-series won four of the 15 awards for which it was nominated.

A couple of Forest’s notable performances in the remainder of the ‘80s were in the 1986 sports movie “The Color of Money”, and the war movie “Platoon”, and the evergreen 1987 biographical comedy film “Good Morning, Vietnam”.

What marked the ‘90s for him was perhaps his portrayal of Bobby Tidd – Adult in the 1995 musical movie “Mr. Holland’s Opus”, directed by Stephen Herek, and which starred Richard Dreyfuss, Glenne Headly and Jay Thomas. It tells the story of a composer who’s found fulfillment in working as a music teacher at a local high school; the movie won five of the 11 awards for which it was nominated, including an Oscar nomination for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Richard Dreyfuss).

Some of Forest’s following notable performances were in the 2002 crime thriller movie “Panic Room”, the 2005 thriller film “Mary”, and the 2007 biographical movie “Rwanda Rising”.

He portrayed Colonel Weber in the critically acclaimed 2016 mystery science fiction movie “Arrival”, directed by Denis Villeneuve, and in which he starred alongside Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner. It follows a linguist who’s working with the military in an attempt to communicate with aliens which’ve just landed on Earth; the movie won 71 awards, including an Oscar for Best Achievement in Sound Editing, while it was nominated for 269 other awards.

Three of Forest’s most recent roles have been in 20 episodes of the crime series “Godfather of Harlem” between 2019 and 2021 (lead role), three episodes of the 2022 comedy series “Young Rock”, and eight episodes of the 2022 mystery comedy series “Extrapolations”; he’s currently shooting for five upcoming movies, including “Heart of a Lion” and “A Fall from Grace”.

He has one writing, 32 producing and eight directing credits, with some of his most notable production work having been on the 2013 biographical crime movie “Fruitvale Station”, which won 36 of the 93 awards for which it was nominated, the 2015 drama film “Songs My Brothers Taught Me”, and the 2019 documentary movie “Devil’s Pie: D’Angelo”.

Forest’s won 60 of the 132 awards for which he’s been nominated, including his Oscar win for “The Last King of Scotland”.

He exchanged vows with American actress Keisha Nash in 1996, in a large ceremony attended by many of their friends and family members; they met on the set of the 1994 action thriller movie “Blown Away”. Forest and Keisha have two daughters together, True and Sonnet, while they both have a child from previous relationships: Forest has a son Ocean Alexander, and Keisha a daughter Autumn. Forest filed for divorce in December 2018, and it was finalized in 2021.

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