Mo’Nique was born Monique Angela Imes on December 11, 1967, in Baltimore, Maryland. She was the youngest child in her family, with four brothers and sisters. Raised in Baltimore, Mo’Nique showed talent early on, when she performed during an open-microphone comedy night at a local club in 1988.
Her impromptu show was a sheer success that motivated the young star in the making to take becoming a professional performer very seriously. She started performing at the local comedy clubs in Atlanta, Baltimore, and all over the East Coast.
Eventually, she recognized her career as being a full-time stand-up comedian and devoted all her efforts to it. This led her to her appearing in the most popular television specials, such as Comic View and Russell Simmons’ Def Comedy Jam. She also opened for many famous musicians of that time.
It was not until Mo’Nique made her appearances on the popular TV show Moesha, in 1999 and 2000, that things started working out to her advantage. The TV show launched her to stardom by giving her a role in a spin-off series.
The series was created for her character. In the next five years, Mo’Nique starred in the sitcom, The Parkers, where she played Nikki Parker, a single mother struggling with her life, motherhood, and so on.
The sitcom was a huge success, and it brought her a couple of film roles in movies like Soul Plane and Baby Boy. While her career as an actress took off, Mo’Nique continued doing stand-up comedy shows.
Mo’Nique’s first real breakthrough was appearing in 2005’s Shadowboxer. Her dramatic acting as a drug addict gained her a lot of attention. In 2006, she also appeared on Farce of the Penguins and Phat Girlz. Romantic comedies and dramas became her strong suit.
In 2009, she appeared in Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire as Mary, an abusive and violent character in constant conflict with her HIV-positive teenage daughter who got pregnant by her own father. The movie won her an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
All this success helped Mo’Nique further establish her career as an actress. Her popularity continued to grow, and she continued to perform at venues such as Def Comedy Jam, The Apollo, and many more.
Aside from movies, talk shows, and her stand-up comedy performances, Mo’Nique also participated in many documentaries, with 2007’s I Coulda Been Your Cellmate being the highlight of her efforts. This led to earning the role of being a guest star on Ugly Betty, the popular hit television series.
In the next few years, Mo’Nique continued making appearances on many shows, including being a host to her very own, self-titled show, The Mo’Nique Show.
During her career, Mo’Nique earned a couple of awards and nominations, including BET Award for Best Actress, BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, and the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
Mo’Nique Relationships: Who Has She Dated
Despite her vast popularity and impressive career, Mo’Nique always kept to herself. She was in a brief relationship with Kenny Mung, a successful accountant. The couple was engaged but never got married.
Mo’Nique and Mark Jackson entered into a relationship in 1996, which resulted in marriage. Mo’Nique and Jackson have a son named Shalon Jackson. Unfortunately, their marriage didn’t last for long, and the couple divorced in 2001. In 2015, she started dating David Hicks, and the couple is in an open relationship.
Mo’Nique’s string of lovers looks like this:
Kenny Mung (1995-1996)
Mark Jackson (1996-2001)
David Hicks (2015-present)
In the News
Mo’Nique’s brother, Gerald, sexually abused her when she was a child. For that, he was sentenced to jail. She also had a fallout with Oprah when she brought the story of the rape incident to the public without asking Mo’Nique for consent.
Mo’Nique claims that she was blacklisted by Hollywood for failing to promote Precious, the movie that made her. We haven’t seen much from Mo’Nique since then…
Find out all the latest news about Mo’Nique at The Shade Room.