Jennifer Hudson joins NBC's "Smash" in a recurring role for its second season.

On the big screen, Hudson was recently featured in the Farrelly Brothers' comedy "The Three Stooges" and will next be seen in "Lullaby" and "The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete." She recently performed at Super Bowl XLIII and at the 2012 Grammy Awards, where she paid tribute to Whitney Houston by singing "I Will Always Love You."

Jennifer Hudson is an Academy Award-winning actress and Grammy-winning recording artist.

She earned a Grammy for her self-titled debut album "Jennifer Hudson," which released the single "Spotlight" and was certified gold by the RIAA. Her sophomore album, "I Remember Me," debuted at #2 on Billboard's Top 200 and R&B Albums charts and has since been certified gold in the U.S. She recently received a 2012 Billboard Music Award nomination for Top R&B Album and also collaborated with Ne-Yo and Rick Ross on the title track for the hit film "Think Like a Man," which opened in April 2012. Also in 2012, Hudson became a best-selling author with the release of her inspirational weight-loss memoir for Dutton Publishing, "I Got This: How I Changed My Ways and Lost What Weighed Me Down."

Long before landing the role of Effie in the film version of the legendary Broadway musical "Dreamgirls," Jennifer Hudson sang in a small Chicago church where week after week she brought the congregation to its feet with her soul-stirring performances. Hudson was also seen in the feature film adaptation of "Sex and the City," joining the hit television series' original cast of Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall, Cynthia Nixon, and Kristen Davis.

Hudson starred in Fox Searchlight's "The Secret Life of Bees" opposite Dakota Fanning, Alicia Keys and Queen Latifah. Set in South Carolina in 1964, "The Secret Life of Bees" is the moving tale of Lily Owens (Fanning) a 14 year-old girl who is haunted by the memory of her late mother. To escape her lonely life and troubled relationship with her father, Lily flees with Rosaleen (Hudson), her caregiver and only friend, to a South Carolina town that holds the secret to her mother's past. Hudson received an NAACP Image Award nomination in 2009 for her role.

Hudson was also seen in Sony Classic's "Winged Creatures," the Rowan Woods directed adaptation of Roy Freirich's novel about a group of strangers who form a unique bond after surviving a random shooting. The film's remarkable cast also includes Forest Whitaker, Kate Beckinsale, Dakota Fanning, Guy Pearce and Jackie Earle Haley.

Hudson has received numerous awards and accolades for her breakout performance in "Dreamgirls," including the Academy Award, Golden Globe, SAG Award, BAFTA Award, NAACP Image Award and Broadcast Film Critics Association Award. She was also honored by the National Board of Review and was named "Entertainer of the Year" at the Soul Train Awards. In addition, she has received 3 nominations for the BET Awards including Best Actress, Best Female R&B Artist and Best New Artist.

Hudson's talent blossomed as she appeared in dozens of talent shows and musical productions during her grammar and high school years. After her first professional role in a local production of "Big River," she showcased her four-octave range and charmed thousands of vacationers as a featured vocalist on the Disney Wonder cruise ship. In 2004, she wowed millions of television viewers during season three of the wildly popular FOX series "American Idol."

Hudson attributes her vocal ability to her late maternal grandmother, Julia Kate Hudson, a long-time choir member.




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FACTS

How tall is she? How old is she? Who is she dating? Find out here.

Age: 36 years old
Birthday: September 12, 1981
Height: 5' 9"
Full Name / Real Name: Jennifer Kate Hudson
Birthplace: Chicago, IL


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