Cuba Michael Gooding, Jr. (born January 2, 1968) is an American actor. He is best known for his Academy Award–winning role as Rod Tidwell in Cameron Crowe’s Jerry Maguire (1996). Other notable films he has appeared in include Boyz n the Hood (1991), A Few Good Men (1992), As Good as It Gets (1997), The Fighting Temptations (2003), American Gangster (2007), The Butler (2013) and Selma (2014).
Gooding was born on January 2, 1968 in The Bronx, New York City, the son of Shirley Gooding (née Sullivan), a singer with the Sweethearts, and Cuba Gooding, Sr., a lead vocalist of the soul group The Main ingredient. He has three siblings: April, actor and musician Omar, and Tommy Gooding. His paternal grandfather was a native of Barbados. His family moved to Los Angeles after his father’s music group had a hit single with “Everybody Plays the Fool” in 1972; two years later, his father left the family. Gooding was raised by his mother and attended four different high schools: North Hollywood High School, Tustin High School, Apple Valley High School, and John F. Kennedy High School in Granada Hills in Los Angeles. He served as class president in three of them. He became a born-again Christian at age 13. In 1994, Gooding married his high school sweetheart, Sara Kapfer, and they have three children: Spencer, Mason, and Piper. They live in Pacific Palisades, and Porter Ranch, California. On April 22, 2014, Kapfer filed for divorce from Gooding citing irreconcilable differences.