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Inside Denzel Washington’s 1st Family House He Bought with Wife & Lived in until 2000

Busayo Ogunjimi
Nov 08, 2021
05:40 A.M.

American superstar actor Denzel Washington loved his first family house so much he would walk around it whenever he got back from filming.

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On the 28 of December 1954, Denzel Washington was born in Mount Vernon, New York, to a pentecostal minister father while his mother owned a beauty shop. He has two siblings.

The actor first appeared on stage when he was about seven years old in a talent show at his local boys and girls club. After his parents divorced, he was sent away to boarding school with his older sister — he was just 14 years old at the time.

Honoree Denzel Washington speaks onstage during the 47th AFI Life Achievement Award on June 06, 2019 | Photo: Getty Images

Honoree Denzel Washington speaks onstage during the 47th AFI Life Achievement Award on June 06, 2019 | Photo: Getty Images

HUMBLE BEGINNINGS

The actor claimed the decision his mother took sending him to the school changed his life. He believed he would not have survived if he had continued his friendship with the people he grew up with.

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He admitted most of them have since then spent close to a total of 40 years being in and out of jail, and even though they were good people, the streets got them.

After leaving the boarding school, Washington attended high school in Florida. He enrolled in college at Fordham University but did not do very well academically when he started.

Denzel Washington and Pauletta Washington attend the The Golden Globe Awards Sponsored By Lindt Chocolate on January 6, 2019 | Photo: Getty Images

Denzel Washington and Pauletta Washington attend the The Golden Globe Awards Sponsored By Lindt Chocolate on January 6, 2019 | Photo: Getty Images

Washington was reportedly confused as to what he would like to study. He tried everything from pre-med to biology, then political science while he also contemplated being a lawyer at one point.

When he was eventually sent home, the actor took a job at summer camp, where he acted in a play for the kids. After the play, someone commended his performance and advised him to consider acting as a profession.

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A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

He returned to the University shortly after to study acting. Even though acting was not a lifelong dream, Washington believed he had found his calling. The actor graduated with a B.A. in Drama and Journalism in 1977.

He was also given a scholarship to the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, where he attended graduate school.

A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

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ACTING CAREER

Washington returned to New York to start his acting career, and he made his movie debut in "Carbon Copy," which was released in 1981.

The actor also starred in a couple of Broadway shows before being cast in a starring role in the television medical show "St. Elsewhere," which aired from 1982 till 1998.

Washington played the character Steve Biko, a real-life South African apartheid martyr in the movie "Cry Freedom," released in 1987. He was nominated for an Oscar award after his performance in the movie.

A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

He won his first Oscar as a supporting actor in the movie "Glory" released in 1989. The actor appeared in the notable movie "Mo' Better Blues" in 1990, a collaboration with Spike Lee.

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In 1992, he appeared in the biopic "Malcolm X" for which he was nominated for another Oscar award. He also appeared in "Philadelphia" in 1993 and "Pelican Brief" that same year.

A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

A still shot of actor Denzel Washington's first family house | Photo: YouTube/ Be Film

Washington starred in the "Hurricane" released in 1999, for which he won a Golden Globe and another Oscar nomination. He has since directed his first film, "Antwone Fisher," in which he also co-starred.

Several other hits include "Training Day" and "The Manchurian Candidate" in 2004. He directed "The Great Debaters" in 2007. For his work in the movie "Fences," he won a Tony Award.

At the annual Golden Globe telecast, Washington received the Cecil B. DeMille Award from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association in 2016. He has also appeared in countless blockbuster movies since then.

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Actor Denzel Washington speaks onstage during the 2016 Carousel of Hope Ball at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on October 8, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California | Photo: Getty Images

Actor Denzel Washington speaks onstage during the 2016 Carousel of Hope Ball at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on October 8, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California | Photo: Getty Images

HIS MARRIAGE

Denzel Washington met Pauletta Pearson on the movie "Wilma" set in 1977 when they were both upcoming actors. They got married in 1983 and had their first child, John David, just after a year of being wed.

Washington declared that when John David came along, acting became more of making a living for him. He said the baby was a miracle, and he knew his responsibility was to provide for his needs.

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After this, the actor bought their first family house in the beautiful Los Angeles neighborhood of Toluca Lake. The 6,300 square feet of living space was designed by architect Paul R. William and was built in 1940.

Actor Leon Errol was among the first list of celebrities to own the house. Actors William and Ardis Holden were the owners of the house in the 1950s, and it was reportedly the wedding venue of Ronald and Nancy Reagan.

Denzel Washington and Pauletta Washington at the "Safe House" premiere in 2012 in New York City | Photo: Getty Images

Denzel Washington and Pauletta Washington at the "Safe House" premiere in 2012 in New York City | Photo: Getty Images

The property, which houses four bedrooms and five bathrooms, was sold by the actor in 2000 to Television writer-producer Brenda Hampton for $1.9 million.

Washington described the house as homey and, after returning from filming, he would walk around to check out the property and on his family. The couple has four children: John David, the oldest, Katia, then twins Malcolm and Olivia.

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Denzel and Pauletta Washington at the 89th Annual Academy Awards in 2017 | Photo: Getty Images

Denzel and Pauletta Washington at the 89th Annual Academy Awards in 2017 | Photo: Getty Images

They have been married for 38 years, and Washington, in a recent interview, credited his wife for holding down the family. He revealed one of the secrets of this lasting union: allowing his wife to speak her mind and ask how he could help afterward.

One area where she does not need help, though, is the kitchen. He declared that Pauletta is a great cook and anything she cooks is his favorite meal. He especially enjoys her curry chicken which he has been eating since he met her.

He also explained that she had been with him through the good and bad, and although he bought a house, her effort and dedication raised their kids and turned the house into a home.

Malcolm Washington, Katia Washington, Pauletta Washington, and honoree Denzel Washington attend the 47th AFI Life Achievement Award honoring the actor on June 06, 2019 | Photo: Getty Images

Malcolm Washington, Katia Washington, Pauletta Washington, and honoree Denzel Washington attend the 47th AFI Life Achievement Award honoring the actor on June 06, 2019 | Photo: Getty Images

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WASHINGTON'S CHILDREN

The legendary actor's children have followed their parent's footsteps as they are all very good actors in their own right currently.

The oldest, John David Washington, has appeared as Ricky Jerret on HBO's comedy series "Ballers." He made his film debut in the 1992 movie "Malcolm X" co-starring his father.

He also helped co-produce the 2010 movie "The Book Of Eli." Before he majored in acting, he was formerly a professional football player signed to St. Louis Rams as a running back.

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KATIA WASHINGTON

Katia is a Yale graduate who has worked with legendary filmmaker Quentin Tarantino on the 2012 movie "Django Unchained" where she served as an editorial production assistant.

She worked as an associate producer on the movie "Fences" directed by her father, and she also served as an assistant during the production of the movie "Birth Of A Nation" by Nate Parker.

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MALCOLM WASHINGTON

Like older brother John, Malcolm started playing as a point guard on the University of Pennsylvania basketball team. In 2013 he graduated from the University with a degree in Film Studies.

He has since, like his siblings, moved into the movie business by going on to study at the American Film Institute Conservatory, graduating in 2016.

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OLIVIA WASHINGTON

Unlike her older sister, Olivia has been very active on screen since 2013 when she appeared in the movie "The Butler" by Lee Daniels.

Olivia followed that up with roles in the series "Empire," "Mr. Robot," and "Madoff" by AMC. She studied acting at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting and made her Broadway debut in 2015, appearing in the "Glass Menagerie."

Her father, Denzel, also lauded Olivia for being a great actress after her performance in the movie "The Little Things," He also appeared alongside Rami Malek. In all, the Washingtons appear to be doing great in their respective fields.

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