Obba Babatunde Biography, Career, and Net Worth

Obba Babatunde (born December 1, 1951) is an actor, producer, director, and singer from the United States. He also appears on The Bold and the Beautiful as an actor.


Originally from Queens, New York, Babatundé has acted in over seventeen stage productions, thirty theatrical films, sixty made-for-television films, and two prime-time television series. In the 1982 revival of Scott Joplin’s opera Treemonisha at the Houston Grand Opera, he played Zodzetrick.

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Profile Summary of Obba Babatunde
Born December 1, 1951 (age 69)

Jamaica, Queens, New York, U.S.
  • Actor
  • producer
  • director
  • singer
Years active 1969–present
Obba Babatunde Early Life and Education

He was born in Jamaica, Queens, to an African-American family. He and his brother Akin both went to public schools as children. He was drawn to theater from an early age, singing, dancing, and acting for his family. He was a well-rounded student at Jamaica High School, where he was a student aide and a member of both the track and cross country teams, in addition to performing in the school musical Sing ’68. He began teaching at a private school for students of color after graduating from Jamaica High School in 1969. In New York, he also pursued acting jobs, landing some Off-Off-Broadway roles.

When he discovered that his ancestors were from Nigeria, he chose a name made up of Yoruba words: Obba, which means “king,” and Babatunde, which means “father has returned again.”

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Obba Babatunde Career

Babatundé has stated that landing a part in a 1976 touring company of Guys and Dolls, starring Leslie Uggams and Richard Roundtree, was a “breakthrough role.” He has since been in a number of additional theater plays.

In 1978, he made his Broadway debut in Timbuktu! He is most known for his role as C.C. White in Dreamgirls, for which he received a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actor in a Musical in 1982. He traveled with the company for two years after playing in this role on Broadway. He subsequently transitioned into cinema and television, playing a variety of parts in both media.

Obba Babatunde Net Worth

Obba Babatunde’s estimated net worth is $ USD 7 million, according to online sources, with primary earnings from a film producer, stage actors, television actors, film actors, and screenwriters.

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Obba Babatunde Movies

Life as Willie, The Celestine Prophecy, Material Girls, After the Sunset, The Manchurian Candidate, The Notebook, John Q, an attorney in Philadelphia (1993), The Last Fall, If I Tell You I Have To Kill You, The Fallen Faithful, Trapped, Tension, and Kinky are among his feature film performances.

He also portrayed Dean Cain in the film How High, as well as Willie Long in the film Life, Lamar, the hotel concierge in the film That Thing You Do!, and Mayor Denny in Santa Paws 2: The Santa Pups.

Babatundé has starred in three prime-time television series: CBS’ Madam Secretary, Showtime’s I’m Dying Up Here (2017), and Netflix’s Dear White People as Dean Fairbanks (2017-2018).

As Bishop Bruce Congdon, Babatundé played a regular role in the Kingdom and Amazon’s Hand of God. In addition to appearances on The Bold and the Beautiful, Boston Legal, Grey’s Anatomy, NCIS, Cold Case, Strong Medicine, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Touched by an Angel, Chicago Hope, Any Day Now, Karen Sisco, Dawson’s Creek, and Friends, he also appeared in Half & Half. He portrays Berry Gordy, the founder of Motown Records, in the 1998 miniseries The Temptations.

In the 2017 series S.W.A.T., Babatundé played Daniel Harrelson, Sr., the father of Shemar Moore’s character.

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Obba Babatunde Voice Roles

Lando Calrissian in Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds, Star Wars: Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader, Star Wars: Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike, and Disney Infinity 3.0, as well as Conroy in Rocket Power, are among Babatundé’s voice acting appearances in animated films and games.
Babatundé voiced Boko in the animated blockbuster The Wild Thornberrys Movie, and he played Big Ears, a soul-singing Basset Hound, in the 2016 Air Bud Entertainment film Pup Star.

Babatundé was a co-producer and director on Oscar’s Black Odyssey, as well as a co-producer on Dorothy Dandridge: An American Beauty and TV in Black: The First 50 Years. He is an executive producer on Journey and an associate producer on the horror flick Voodoo Dolls. Babatundé most recently directed and co-starred in the Lionsgate Home Entertainment feature film American Bad Boy alongside Katt Williams, as well as producing and directing the short film Clarissa’s Gift.

Babatundé also directed a production of Dreamgirls, a Broadway musical. In the Blink of an Eye was co-written, directed, and produced by him.

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Obba Babatunde as a Singer

Singing the title track on Onaje Allan Gumbs’ album Sack Full of Dreams and “The Gal That Got Away” on the Harold Arlen soundtrack Over The Rainbow are two of his recorded works.

Babatunde appeared as Zodzetrick in the second staging of Scott Joplin’s opera Treemonisha at the Houston Grand Opera in 1982. They were the first to create it in 1976. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Morehouse College choir gave the world premiere of the opera in 1972 when it was found.

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Obba Babatunde Nominations and Awards

Babatundé won the Daytime Emmy Award for “Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama Series” in 2016, as well as the Peachtree Village International Film Festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Babatundé was named “Best Lead Male” at the NAACP Theatre Awards in 2010 for his portrayal of Sammy Davis, Jr. in the Old Globe production of the musical Sammy.

Babatundé was nominated for an Emmy for his performance as C.C. White in the original Broadway cast of Dreamgirls, an NAACP Image Award for his work in the HBO film Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, and an Ovation Award and a Tony Award for his portrayal as C.C. White in the HBO film Miss Evers’ Boys. For his portrayal as Sarge in A Soldiers Play, he received an NAACP Image Award for “Best Actor.”


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