THE SKELETON KEY
Destined to become one of the most talented young actresses of her generation, JOY BRYANT (Jill) has made an impressive transition from the runway to the big
screen. In 2002, she achieved her breakthrough performance in Denzel Washington's Antwone Fisher, which garnered praise from critics and the attention of the public.
In addition to completing The Skeleton Key, Bryant recently wrapped the independent film London, directed by Hunter Richards. The ensemble cast includes Jessica Biel, Jason Statham and Chris Evans. Following London, she will begin production on Jim Sheridan's highly anticipated film Locked and Loaded, loosely based on the life of rapper 50 Cent, who will also appear in the film.
In 2004, Bryant appeared in the El Camino Pictures' adventure/drama Haven. The film, which co-starred Bill Paxton and Orlando Bloom, centers on the story of two businessmen that flee to the Cayman Islands to avoid federal prosecution. Haven screened at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2004. In the same year, Bryant appeared in Three Way Split. Directed by Scott Ziehl, the film is a sexy noir-thriller based on Gil Brewer's 1963 pulp novel Wild to Possess, about murder, kidnapping, blackmail and sexual deception. Bryant co-starred in the Hyperion Pictures independent feature alongside Gina Gershon, Dwight Yoakam, Ali Larter and Desmond Harrington. In 2004, Bryant also appeared with Nia Long and David Alan Grier in director Mario Van Peebles' Baadasssss! The film, purchased by Sony Pictures Classics, received rave reviews at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival.
In December 2003, Bryant co-starred with Jessica Alba and Mekhi Phifer in Universal Pictures' and director Bille Woodruff's music-driven, coming-of-age drama Honey. Bryant portrayed the best friend of an inner-city woman (Alba) who fulfills her dream of becoming a successful video choreographer until she is confronted with unexpected setbacks.
Bryant was featured as the female lead in the 2002 critically acclaimed film Antwone Fisher, the directorial debut of Denzel Washington. Bryant portrayed the love interest of the film's title character, played by Derek Luke, who helps Fisher confront his painful, troubled past. The Fox Searchlight Picture, written by Antwone Fisher, is loosely based on his life experiences.
Bryant made her on-screen debut in the MTV original production of Carmen: A Hip Hopera, opposite Beyonce Knowles and Mekhi Phifer, followed by a small role in the Warner Bros. comedy Showtime, which starred Eddie Murphy and Robert De Niro.
While enrolled as a full-time student at Yale University, Bryant was discovered by a modeling scout from Next Models Management. For several years, Bryant pursued a career as a fashion model in Paris and subsequently signed an exclusive contract with Tommy Hilfiger. Bryant continues to model between films as a cover subject for Victoria's Secret and in a number of prestigious print campaigns, such as the Fall 2003 Gap ads.
Born and raised in the South Bronx, Bryant attended Westminster high school in Connecticut on a full scholarship. She is an avid supporter of the Fieldston Enrichment Program under the umbrella of A Better Chance Public School Program, an organization that reaches out to minority talent to enrich their academic opportunities.
Bryant spends her time between Los Angeles and New York with her beloved pit bull named Nana.
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