Janet Jackson

Active - 1993 - 2010  |   Born - May 16, 1966 in Gary, Indiana, United States  |   Genres - Music, Comedy

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Of the many siblings of mega-star Michael Jackson, Michael's youngest sister Janet is one of the few with enough genuine talent to succeed without her family ties. Jackson's fame rests largely on her successful, elaborately produced music videos, wherein the talented singer and dancer projects a more accessible, realistic image than her otherworldly brother. She is also a skilled and agreeable actress, as witness her series-TV stints on Good Times (1977-78), Diff'rent Strokes (1981-82) and Fame (1984). In 1993, Janet Jackson made her movie debut as a South Central L.A. beautician in director John Singleton's Poetic Justice (1993); the film was no classic, but Janet dominated every scene she was in, even those shared with notorious rap artist Tupac Shakur.

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  • As a child, she aspired to be a jockey.
  • Began performing in her family's Las Vegas revue at age 7, doing celebrity impressions such as Mae West and Cher.
  • In 1979, she starred in the short-lived ABC sitcom New Kind of Family opposite Rob Lowe.
  • Nicknamed "Dunk."
  • Only member of the Jackson family to be nominated for an Academy Award.
  • Mattel auctioned off a special Barbie made in her likeness in December 2010, and the proceeds were donated to the Los Angeles charity Project Angel Food.
  • Coauthored the self-help book True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself, which was released in February 2011.
  • With the release of her 2015 album Unbreakable, she became only the third artist (after Bruce Springsteen and Barbra Streisand) to have a number one album in the 1980s, 1990s, 2000s and 2010s.