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Vanessa Lodge in Hellcats & Dreamgirls
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With her intriguing multicultural beauty and true innocence, multi-talented Sharon Leal is one of the most appealing actresses in Hollywood today. Sharon was born October 17th 1979 in Tucson, Arizona and raised in Fresno, California, Sharon Leal began singing at an early age and later discovered her passion for acting while attending performing arts high school. Her pr
ofessional career began in regional theater productions of "Ain't Misbehavin'," "Into the Woods," and "Little Shop of Horrors." Soon thereafter, Leal moved to New York and landed major roles on Broadway in "Miss Saigon" and "Rent." Leal went on to star in the original musical, "Bright Lights Big City," at the New York Theater Workshop, and was also featured on the production's soundtrack. While in New York, she staged cabarets and continued to hone her skills when she produced an original production of "Stormy Weather" at the Manhattan Theatre Club, in which she starred as the legendary Lena Horne. From the New York stage, Sharon easily transitioned into television and film. Her television credits include a series regular role on CW's "Hellcats" and four seasons on David E. Kelley's hit FOX drama, "Boston Public." Her guest starring roles include episodes of "Las Vegas" and "CSI: Miami." She also had recurring roles on NBC's "LAX," with Blair Underwood, and ABC's "Private Practice," as Sonya, the love interest to Taye Diggs' character.
In 2006, Sharon received international attention as a co-star of the Golden Globe Award-winning blockbuster film, "Dreamgirls," opposite Beyonce Knowles, Jamie Foxx and Eddie Murphy. She portrayed Michelle Morris, the singer that replaced Effie White (played by Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson) in the female trio, The Dreams. In "Dreamgirls," Sharon showcased her remarkable vocal skills and was heard on the popular movie soundtrack. Named one of Entertainment Weekly's "Breakout Stars" in 2007, Sharon soared into the stratosphere as the star of two highly successful ensemble films; the #1 box office hit, "Why Did I Get Married?," with Tyler Perry, Janet Jackson and Jill Scott, and the popular holiday feature, "This Christmas," alongside Idris Elba, Regina King and Mekhi Phifer. Her performance in the latter project won her the 2008 Asian Excellence Award for Outstanding Film Actress. Sharon starred with Samuel L. Jackson and the late Bernie Mac in the 2008 musical feature film, "Soul Men." In 2010, she reprised her role in the highly-anticipated sequel, "Why Did I Get Married Too?," which grossed over $60 million at the domestic box office. Her independent film credits include "Face the Music," "Motives 2," "Linewatch," and the short film, "What Are the Odds," for which she won the Best Supporting Actress Award at the New York Independent Film Festival. Up next, she stars in "On the 7th Day," the highly-anticipated sequel to T.D. Jakes' "Woman Thou Art Loosed.
Leal was born in Tucson, Arizona to a Filipino mother and African American father. Her adoptive father, Jesse Leal, was a Master Sergeant in the United States Air Force and a police officer at Clark Air Base, Philippines; he married Leal`s mother in 1972 and legally adopted Leal. Leal`s mother Angelita, a housewife, later re-married to Elmer Manankil, the father of Leal`s younger sister, Kristina. With Bev Land, her husband, Leal has a son, Kai Miles Land (born 2001). Former Guiding Light costar, Yvonna Wright, has said that she and Leal are close friends; the two starred together in a community production of Dreamgirls in their hometown. Leal is currently involved in divorce proceedings with husband Bev Land, which she discussed briefly in an interview with Essence.
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Sharon Ann Leal (born October 17, 1972) is an American actress and singer. She is known for her roles in movies such as Dreamgirls, Why Did I Get Married?, Why Did I Get Married Too? and her roles on the television shows Legacy, Guiding Light, Boston Public, and Hellcats.
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