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Aja Naomi King is a gifted actress whose body of work has evolved with impressive performances and versatile roles across film and television.
On television, King stars as ambitious student ‘Michaela Pratt’ in the hit ABC series, “How to Get Away with Murder.” Set in Philadelphia at a prestigious law school, King portrays one of the five ambitious law students who is chosen to work for the brilliant criminal defense professor ‘Annalise Keating’ played by Viola Davis. The show follows the students and ‘Annalise' as they become forever connected to each other after a murder is committed on campus. The show is currently in its fourth season. For her performance in the series, King received a "Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series" nomination at the 2015 NAACP Image Awards.
Upcoming on the big screen, King will star in THE UPSIDE, directed by Neil Burger and opposite Nicole Kidman, Bryan Cranston, and Kevin Hart. The film is a remake of the 2011 French film THE INTOUCHABLES from Eric Toledano and Olivier Nakache. Based on a true story, the film is about a friendship that begins when two unlikely lives intersect: quadriplegic millionaire Philip (Cranston) takes on Dell (Hart) as his caregiver, and the two form an unusual bond. King plays Latrice, the mother of Dell’s son. Upset by Dell’s unwillingness to hold onto a job or stay out of trouble, she is later surprised and wary when he starts giving her his sizable paychecks. In addition, Aja will also star as the lead in the upcoming film “A Girl from Mogadishu” from Pembridge Pictures. The film follows Somali activist Ifrah Ahmed (King), who was born into a refugee camp in Somalia and sent to Ireland as a teenager. Recounting her traumatic childhood experiences of female genital mutilation-cutting when applying for refugee status, she vows to devote her life to the eradication of the practice.
Most recently in film, King received critical acclaim for her role in the Fox Searchlight groundbreaking feature, “The Birth of a Nation.” In the biographical drama, King plays the wife of ‘Nat Turner,’ the famed African-American who in 1831 led a slave rebellion for freedom in Southampton County, Virginia. King was nominated for a 2017 NAACP award in the category of “Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture” for her performance, and the film won the Audience Award and Grand Jury Prize in the U.S. Dramatic Competition at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.
King's additional feature film credits include Christopher Shinn's “Four”, in which she starred alongside a notable cast whose performances garnered them a Los Angeles Film Festival Award for “Best Performance.” She made her film debut in Whit Stillman's dramedy “Damsels In Distress” featuring Greta Gerwig, and also appeared in “36 Saints” and “The Rewrite” opposite Hugh Grant and Marisa Tomei.
Other television credits include series regular roles in Amazon's “The Onion News Empire” and the CW series “Emily Owens M.D.” Prominent guest appearances include a season-long arc on the ABC drama “Black Box”, “Bojack Horseman” for Netflix, as well as “The Blacklist”, “Blue Bloods”, “Deadbeat”, and “Person of Interest.”
On stage King has portrayed ‘Camae’ in Katori Hall’s play “The Mountaintop” for L.A. Theatre Works and their live audio theater program. Trip Cullman directed King in Edgewise at the Walkerspace Theatre in New York.
In 2017, King was honored by ESSENCE at their 10th annual “Black Women in Hollywood” event. She was awarded their Lincoln Shining Star award.
King is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama and currently resides in Los Angeles, California.