Zoe Saldana

Zoë Yadira Saldaña Nazario is an American actress. After her performances with the theater group Faces, she was in a 1999 episode of Law & Order. Her film career began a year later with Center Stage portraying a ballet dancer.
Saldana worked in science fiction films, beginning in 2009 with her first of multiple appearances as Nyota Uhura in the Star Trek film series and her first appearance as Neytiri in the Avatar film series. She portrayed Gamora in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, beginning with Guardians of the Galaxy. Due to her appearances in some of the highest-grossing films of all time, such as Avatar and , Saldana is the second highest-grossing film actress of all time,. Her films grossed more than worldwide.

Early life

Saldana was born June 19, 1978 in Passaic, New Jersey. Her father, Aridio Saldaña, was Dominican, while her mother, Asalia Nazario, is Puerto Rican. She was christened Zoë Yadira Saldaña Nazario, reflecting both parents' surnames. With regard to her racial identity, Saldana stated, "There's no one way to be black. I'm black the way I know how to be." The majority of her early childhood was in Jackson Heights, New York. She was raised bilingual, speaking English and Spanish. She has two sisters, Cisely and Mariel. Their father died in a vehicle wreck around her ninth birthday, and their mother moved with the children to the Dominican Republic.
Saldana discovered her love of dance in the Dominican Republic, then enrolled in the ECOS Espacio de Danza Academy studying forms of dance, but describes ballet as her passion. She told Vanity Fair she quit ballet because she did not "have the feet" and had too much pride and ambition to just be in the corps de ballet. The family returned to New York city after her sophomore year at Newtown High School. In 1995, she performed with the Faces theater group in Brooklyn, with plays providing positive messages for teens via themes dealing with issues such as substance abuse and adolescent sex. During these years, she performed with the New York Youth Theater; her appearance in their production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat led a talent agency to recruit her. Her dance training and her acting experience helped her land her first film role, playing ballet student Eva Rodriguez in Center Stage.



Saldana was a member of Faces after her exposure in an episode of Law & Order in 1999. Saldana's first film role was in Center Stage, directed by Nicholas Hytner, about dancers at the fictitious American Ballet Academy in New York city. She appeared in the Britney Spears vehicle Crossroads. The film earned negative reviews from critics, but was a box-office success. Saldana starred in the comedy-drama Drumline, alongside Nick Cannon, earning mixed reviews.
In , she played Anamaria, a pirate joining Will Turner and Mr. Gibbs for a chance to confront Jack Sparrow for stealing her ship. She appeared in The Terminal as Dolores Torres, an immigration officer and Star Trek fan, a role helping Saldana during her portrayal in the Star Trek reboot. In 2004, she had roles in Haven and Temptation; both earned little-to-no box-office success.
In 2005, Saldana appeared in Constellation, Guess Who with Ashton Kutcher, and Dirty Deeds. She starred in the romantic comedy-dramas Premium and After Sex. Saldana starred in Blackout, a television film set in New York city during the Northeast Blackout of 2003. The film premiered at the 2007 Zurich Film Festival and debuted on BET in 2008. Saldana had a supporting role as Angie Jones in the action thriller Vantage Point.

Breakthrough roles, ''Avatar'' and ''Guardians of the Galaxy''

Saldana appeared in two roles in 2009, raising her profile considerably. She played Nyota Uhura in Star Trek. The film's director J. J. Abrams asked Saldana to play the role because he enjoyed her work. Saldana never saw the original series, although she portrayed a Trekkie in The Terminal, but agreed to play the role after Abrams complimented her. She met with Nichelle Nichols to understand the creation of Uhura's background and name of the character. Saldana's mother was a Star Trek fan, leaving voice-mails during filming, advising on the role. Steven Spielberg taught her the Vulcan salute five years earlier while he directed her in The Terminal. Star Trek was a box-office success earning $385.7 million.
Saldana's second high-profile film in 2009 was James Cameron's Avatar portraying the indigenous hunter Neytiri. Avatar was well-received by critics, accumulating an approval rating of 83% on the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes. It grossed $2.7 billion worldwide to become the highest-grossing film of all time, as well as in the United States and Canada. It also became the first film to gross more than $2 billion worldwide. The film was nominated for ten Saturn Awards, and won all ten at the 36th Saturn Awards ceremony. Saldana's Saturn Award for Best Actress win marked a rare occurrence for an all-CG character.

In 2010, Saldana performed in The Losers as Aisha al-Fadhil, a native Bolivian woman. For the role, she was required to gain weight to carry weapons for eight hours a day. In 2010, she appeared in Takers, Death at a Funeral, and Burning Palms. Her television ad for Calvin Klein's "Envy" line debuted in 2010. In 2011, Saldana starred in the romantic comedy The Heart Specialist, and portrayed assassin Cataleya Restrepo in the crime drama Colombiana. Although the latter film earned negative reviews from critics, Saldana's performance was praised.
In 2012, she appeared in the romantic drama The Words, earning negative reviews from critics with little success at the box-office.
In 2013, Saldana reprised her role as Uhura in Star Trek Into Darkness, the sequel to the Star Trek re-boot. Like the previous film, it was a box-office success, ending its North American theatre run with a box office total of $228,778,661, placing it as the 11th highest-grossing film for 2013. It earned $467,365,246 worldwide, ranking it in 14th place for 2013, and making it the highest-grossing film of the franchise. Saldana voiced her character in the 2013 release of the Star Trek video game.
In 2014, Saldana played Gamora in the hit Guardians of the Galaxy. Saldana portrayed the Gamora character with make-up rather than computer generated imagery or performance capture. The film became the third highest-grossing film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, behind The Avengers and Iron Man 3. It was the third highest-grossing 2014 film, and the highest-grossing superhero film of 2014.
The film earned positive reviews. Saldana was nominated for numerous awards including Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Actress in an Action Movie, Favorite Action Movie Actress at the People's Choice Awards, and Best On-Screen Transformation at the MTV Movie Awards.
In May 2014, she performed in Rosemary's Baby, a television adaptation of Ira Levin's horror novel. Saldana also co-produced the four-hour two-part show.
In 2014, Saldana was recognized by Elle magazine during The Women in Hollywood Awards, honoring women for achievements in film, spanning all aspects of the motion-picture industry, including acting, directing, and producing.


Saldana starred in Nina, an unauthorized biography about the jazz musician Nina Simone released in 2016. The film depicts the late singer's rise to fame and relationship with her manager Clifton Henderson. Simone's family is critical of the decision to cast her in the role. In 2016, she co-starred in the science-fiction sequel Star Trek Beyond released in July, and Ben Affleck's crime drama Live by Night released in December.
Saldana returned as Gamora in the Guardians of the Galaxy sequel, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 released in May. She re-reprised the role in the sequel ', and in ' released in April 2019.
Also in 2017, Saldana played Mrs. Mollé in I Kill Giants, Anders Walter's adaptation of Joe Kelly's graphic novel I Kill Giants. Shooting commenced in Ireland in September 2016. Also that year, she appeared in performing the voice of pirate parrot Captain Celaeno.
On May 3, 2018, she received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, honoring her legacy in the motion picture industry.
She will re-reprise her role as Neytiri in the sequels Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 scheduled for 2021 and 2023 respectively.

Personal life

In June 2010, Saldana was engaged to her longtime boyfriend Keith Britton, an actor and the CEO of My Fashion Database. In November 2011, she and Britton announced they had ended their relationship after eleven years.
Saldana was in a relationship with actor Bradley Cooper from December 2011 to January 2013.
In March 2013, Saldana began dating Italian artist Marco Perego. They married in June 2013 in London. In July 2015, Saldana revealed Perego adopted her surname upon marriage. Thereafter, Zoe became Zoe Saldana-Perego and Marco became Marco Perego-Saldana. Their children would be Perego-Saldana. Saldana and Perego have three sons, twins born in November 2014 and the third born in February 2017. Saldana has stated her children will be multi-lingual because she and her husband speak Spanish and English around them.
In July 2016, during an interview with Net-a-Porter's The Edit, Saldana revealed she has Hashimoto's thyroiditis, an autoimmune disease, along with her mother and sisters. To combat the effects of this disease, Saldana said she and her husband adhere to a gluten- and dairy-free diet.
Saldana is a supporter of FINCA International, a micro-finance organization.
Saldana is left-handed. In 2015, during International Left-Handers Day, she tweeted in support of the Left-Handers Movement.



2000Center StageEva RodriguezNicholas Hytner
2001Get Over ItMaggieTommy O'Haver
2001SnipesCherylRich Murray
2002CrossroadsKitTamra Davis
2002DrumlineLailaCharles Stone III
2003'AnamariaGore Verbinski
2004The TerminalDolores TorresSteven Spielberg
2004HavenAndreaFrank E. Flowers
2004TemptationAnnieMark Tarlov
2005ConstellationRosa BoxerJordan Walker-Pearlman
2005Guess WhoTheresa JonesKevin Rodney Sullivan
2005Dirty DeedsRachel BuffDavid Kendall
2005The Curse of Father CardonaFlorFélix Germán
2006PremiumCharliPete Chatmon
2006The Heart SpecialistDonnaDennis Cooper
2007After SexKatEric Amadio
2007BlackoutClaudineJerry Lamothe
2008Vantage PointAngie JonesPete Travis
2009Star TrekNyota UhuraJ. J. Abrams
2009The SkepticCassieTennyson Bardwell
2009AvatarNeytiriJames Cameron
2010The LosersAishaSylvain White
2010TakersLily JansenJohn Luessenhop
2010Death at a FuneralElaineNeil LaBute
2010Burning PalmsSara CottonChristopher B. Landon
2011KaylienZoe SaldanaShort film
2011ColombianaCataleya RestrepoOlivier Megaton
2012The WordsDora Jansen
2013Blood TiesVanessaGuillaume Canet
2013Star Trek Into DarknessNyota UhuraJ. J. Abrams
2013Out of the FurnaceLena WarrenScott Cooper
2014UnityNarratorShaun MonsonDocumentary
2014Infinitely Polar BearMaggie StuartMaya Forbes
2014Guardians of the GalaxyGamoraJames Gunn
2014The Book of LifeMaria Posada Jorge R. Gutierrez
2016NinaNina SimoneCynthia Mort
2016Star Trek BeyondNyota UhuraJustin Lin
2016Live by NightGraciella CorralesBen Affleck
2017Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2GamoraJames Gunn
2017I Kill GiantsMrs. MolléAnders Walter
2017'Captain Celaeno Jayson Thiessen
2018The Legend of Red HandMia ParcStefano SollimaShort film; promoting Campari
2018'GamoraRusso brothers
2019Missing LinkAdelina Fortnight Chris Butler
2019'GamoraRusso brothers
2022Avatar 2NeytiriJames CameronFilming
2024Avatar 3NeytiriJames CameronFilming


Video games

Theme park attractions

Awards and nominations

2003MTV Movie AwardsBest Kiss Drumline
2005Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie: Female Breakout StarGuess Who
2006Black Reel AwardsBest ActressGuess Who
2009ALMA AwardsActress in FilmStar Trek
2009Boston Society of Film CriticsBest Ensemble CastStar Trek
2009Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: ActionStar Trek
2009Washington DC Area Film Critics AssociationBest EnsembleStar Trek
2009People's Choice AwardsFavorite Breakout Movie ActressStar Trek
2009Scream AwardsBest Science Fiction ActressStar Trek
2009Scream AwardsBreakout Performance – FemaleStar Trek
2009Scream AwardsBest EnsembleStar Trek
2009BET AwardsBest ActressStar Trek
2009Black Reel AwardsBest ActressStar Trek
2009Broadcast Film Critics AssociationBest Acting EnsembleStar Trek
2009Empire AwardsBest ActressAvatar
2009Kids' Choice AwardsCutest Couple Avatar
2009Kids' Choice AwardsFavorite Movie ActressAvatar
2009MTV Movie AwardsBest Female PerformanceAvatar
2009MTV Movie AwardsBest Kiss Avatar
2009Scream AwardsBest Science Fiction ActressAvatar
2009Saturn AwardsBest ActressAvatar
2009Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: Sci-FiAvatar
2009Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: ActionThe Losers
2009Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: ComedyDeath at a Funeral
2011ALMA AwardsFavorite Movie Actress – Drama/AdventureTakers
2011BET AwardsBest ActressThe Losers
2011BET AwardsBest ActressDeath at a Funeral
2011Image AwardsOutstanding Actress in a Motion PictureThe Losers
2012BET AwardsBest ActressColombiana
2012Black Reel AwardsBest ActressColombiana
2012Image AwardsOutstanding Actress in a Motion PictureColombiana
2012Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: ActionColombiana
2012ALMA AwardsFavorite Movie Actress Drama/AdventureColombiana
2013Teen Choice AwardsChoice Summer Movie Star: FemaleStar Trek Into Darkness
2015Black Reel AwardsOutstanding Actress, TV Movie or Mini-SeriesRosemary's Baby
2015Black Reel AwardsOutstanding Supporting ActressGuardians of the Galaxy
2015Black Reel AwardsOutstanding Voice PerformanceThe Book of Life
2015People's Choice AwardsFavorite Action Movie ActressGuardians of the Galaxy
2016Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: AnTEENcipatedStar Trek Beyond
2017People's Choice AwardsFavorite Action Movie ActressStar Trek Beyond
2017Kids' Choice AwardsFavorite Butt-KickerStar Trek Beyond
2017Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: Sci-FiGuardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
2017Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie: Ship Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
2018Teen Choice AwardsChoice Movie Actress: ActionAvengers: Infinity War
2018Teen Choice AwardsChoice Liplock Avengers: Infinity War
2018Hollywood Walk of FameZoe SaldanaAvengers: Infinity War
2019Teen Choice AwardsChoice Action Movie ActressAvengers: Endgame