Luenell was born in Tollette, Arkansas, a town whose population barely registers with the U.S. census. At about ten years old she caught the acting bug when she saw the plays South Pacific and Ain’t S’posed to Die a Natural Death. She enrolled in theatre classes at the grade school level and continued to study through college and cut her teeth at the Oakland Ensemble Theatre.
In March of 1995, Luenell’s mom passed away and one month later she discovered she was pregnant – months later, a beautiful daughter Da’Nelle was born and she is the joy of her life, her “miracle child” as Luenell puts it.
Just when life seemed rosy, Luenell got a rude awakening. Law enforcement agents caught up with her and immediately took her to jail. Luenell was sentenced to 365 days for a series of indiscretions while working at a bank months earlier. It played out like an episode of Lil’ Kim on Court TV. She actually served 4 months and 18 days. A lot of the inmates recognized her from her appearances on BET’s Comic View. Ironically, a film about prison life at Alcatraz, in which she starred in, entitled, “The Rock”, was filmed at the same location of the jail (Twin Towers Correctional Facility in Los Angeles). The most devastating part for Luenell was the fact that she could not see her daughter.
Luenell is becoming increasingly popular from her appearances in television film and videos. Best know for her controversial role as the “hooker with the heart of gold” in the blockbuster comedy of 2006 “Borat: Cultural Learnings Of America For Make Benefit Glorius Nation Of Kazakhastan” Luenell is recognized by the mainstream and urban sectors of the population from DVDs such as “Katt Williams American Hustle” and “Laffapalooza” with Jamie Foxx. Luenell starred in the hip-hop cult classic film “Never Die Alone” in which she co-starred with DMX, playing a feisty bartender named Jasper. She recently completed a 60-city tour with “Money Mike” Katt Williams, who states. “Luenell is dynamic. We couldn’t do it (the tour) without her. When she is not around, we really miss her, so we decided we shouldn’t miss her at all. Hollywood you’re sleepin’ but you’ll catch up.” –Katt Williams
Well, Hollywood has opened their eyes as Luenell recently completed several feature films: “Spring Breakdown” with Parker Posey and Amber Tamblyn, “All About Steve” with Sandra Bullock, “Divine Intervention” with James Avery and Wesley Jonathan, and “The Hustle” with Charlie Murphy and Kym Whitley.
Luenell is living her dream. With such an intriguing past, one would wonder how can she be so funny, but it’s just that…life. With every little snag, and she has had many, she somehow manages to poke fun of her experiences making audiences howl with laughter, even though at the time, she was in great distress. Through it all, help has been there along the way from relatives, friends and her faith in God to ease the pain. Her reputation as a comic superstar continues to flourish, “…comedy demolition machine” (EURweb report) “a sidesplitting high wired act without a net…” (Comedy Reviewer Buddy Sampson), “…comedy to die for.” (Metro LA) “…one of the top 25 funniest people in LA (Los Angeles Magazine) and the accolades continue to roll.
There is no question about it, Luenell is a comic genius. But the girl from Tollette with a tale that reads like The Perils of Pauline would like everyone to know, that deep down inside, “I am a nice person.” –Luenell