Kat Graham

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Albert Flores

Katerina Alexandre Hartford Graham (born September 5, 1989) is an American actress, singer and dancer (now distributing music under the stage name Toro Gato). She is widely known for her role as Bonnie Bennett on The CW supernatural drama series The Vampire Diaries (2009-2017). Her film credits include The Parent Trap (1998), 17 Again (2009), The Roommate (2011), Honey 2 (2011), Addicted (2014), and All Eyez on Me (2017). In music, Graham was previously signed to A&M/Octone and Interscope Records, and has released two extended plays and two studio albums.

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Early life

Graham was born in Geneva, Switzerland, but raised in Los Angeles, California, U. S. +more Her father, Joseph, is of Americo-Liberian descent, and her mother, Natasha, is Jewish (from a family from Poland and Russia). Graham's father was a music executive and the godfather of two of producer Quincy Jones' children. Her paternal grandfather was a UN Ambassador, serving for 40 years in four countries such as The Netherlands, Sweden, Romania and Kenya. Her maternal and paternal grandparents were refugees, from the Holocaust and Liberia, respectively.

Her parents divorced when she was 5 years old. She has a half-brother, Yakov, born in Tel Aviv, Israel. +more Graham was raised in her mother's Jewish religion and attended a Hebrew school.

Career

Commercials and dancing

Graham began her career in the entertainment industry at age 6. Within the following eight years, she appeared in numerous television commercials, including advertisements for Barbie, Edison, K-Mart, and Pop-Tarts. +more At age 15, Graham caught the eye of choreographer Fatima Robinson, and was asked to perform at the BET Awards as a background dancer for Bow Wow. Graham followed her BET Awards appearance with work as a background dancer for Missy Elliott, Pharrell Williams, Jamie Foxx, and choreographers Hi-Hat and Michael Rooney. At age 17, Graham participated in a national marketing campaign to advertise Coca-Cola's soda brand Fanta. Graham appeared in the marketing campaign as a member of the "Fantanas", known as Capri, also known as Strawberry. Graham has appeared in various music videos, including Akon's "Lonely", Christina Milian's "Dip It Low", Justin Bieber and Usher's "Somebody to Love (Remix)", 112's "What If", John Legend's "Used to Love U", B2K's "Why I Love You", Musiq Soulchild's "B. U. D. D. Y. ", Nelly's "Just A Dream" and Diddy - Dirty Money with Usher's "Looking for Love".

Television and film

In 1998, Graham made her film debut as a child star on the remake version of The Parent Trap alongside Lindsay Lohan. Graham plays the role of Jackie, a Camp Walden camper. +more In 2002, Graham made her television debut on the Disney Channel teen comedy series Lizzie McGuire. Graham went on to appear on various television series, including CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, The O. C. , Malcolm in the Middle, Joan of Arcadia, Grounded For Life, and Greek. In 2008, she appeared in the musical comedy series Hannah Montana playing the role of a girlfriend to Jason Earles's character Jackson Stewart as a guest appearance for three episodes. Graham has also had well-known supporting roles in films such as 17 Again and The Roommate.

In December 2008, Graham began filming sci-fi/dance film Boogie Town in Los Angeles. Filming on the film was put on hold that same month due to payroll issues with background performers. +more In April 2009, principal photography was stopped due to schedule conflicts with some of her co-stars and other projects. The film is set in a futuristic New York City in 2015 where dance battles are permanently banned. Graham plays the role of Ingrid. The film was set to be released in theaters worldwide October 2011, however it was set to be originally released in June 2009.

In March 2009, Graham was cast in The CW supernatural drama series The Vampire Diaries based on the book series of the same name. Graham plays the role of Bonnie Bennett, a young witch, which is considered her breakout role. +more The series premiered on September 10, 2009, to 4. 91 million viewers and received praise for the series progression from critics. In May 2012, the series was renewed for the show's fourth season. She took over as the female lead in 2015 after the Canadian actress Nina Dobrev departed for the seventh season. In 2011, Graham won "Choice TV Female Scene Stealer" at the Teen Choice Awards for her role on the show.

In August 2010, The Hollywood Reporter announced that Graham was cast in the Universal Pictures dance drama film Honey 2. The film is a sequel to the 2003 film Honey. +more The film follows a troubled girl and aspiring dancer who joins a dance crew. The film was released theatrically in selected countries for a limited release and went on to make over worldwide. In June 2011, the film was released direct-to-DVD in North America to negative reviews from critics though Graham's performance and dancing was praised. Also that year, Graham starred in another dance-oriented film, Dance Fu in which she appeared as the female lead.

In 2017, she played actress Jada Pinkett Smith in the Tupac biopic All Eyez On Me.

Graham starred in the Netflix romantic comedy films The Holiday Calendar (2018), Operation Christmas Drop (2020), and Love in the Villa (2022).

In 2022, Graham competed in season eight of The Masked Singer as "Robo-Girl". While she bested Mario Cantone as "Maize" and Gloria Gaynor as "Mermaid" on "Andrew Lloyd Webber Night", she was eliminated on "Muppet Night" alongside Jerry Springer as "Beetle".

Music

In 2002, she wrote a song titled "Derailed", which was featured in the Jean-Claude Van Damme film of the same title. In 2006, Graham pursued a career as a musical artist. +more Graham found her break in 2007 when she was featured on "The Donque Song" and "I Got It From My Mama" on singer/rapper will. i. am's third studio album Songs About Girls. The move saw Graham embark on a world tour with The Black Eyed Peas as a supporting act for the Black Blue & You Tour. In April 2010, the song "My Boyfriends Back" released on YouTube and got over 1 million views. In October 2010, Graham released her debut single "Sassy". A music video for the song premiered that same month, but the track performed poorly and it failed to chart. She then went on to release covers of artists such as Janet Jackson and Paula Abdul which garnered Graham the attention of Paula who praised her cover. Graham contributed a cover of the Garbage song "Only Happy When It Rains" to The Vampire Diaries soundtrack. The song premiered in December 2010 in an episode of the series titled "The Sacrifice". In March 2011, Graham released another single titled "I Want It All". The music video released in May 2011.

In February 2012, Graham signed a recording contract with A&M/Octone Records which was marked as her first major label signing. In March 2012, Graham released "Put Your Graffiti On Me". +more The song itself received positive reviews from critics. In the same month, the official music video premiered and as of October 19, 2012 has reached 4,843,458 views on YouTube. The song peaked at #5 on the US Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs chart. On May 29, Graham performed the track on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. This was marked as her first televised musical performance ever. On that same day Graham released her first EP Against The Wall which debuted at #54 on the iTunes Music Album Chart. Graham is currently in the process of recording her debut album. The second single taken from her debut EP is the track "Wanna Say". The music video was directed by Benny Boom and produced by London Alley. She also appeared on the song "Dog Day Afternoon" from the Ras Kass & Doc Hollywood free collaborative digital album Spit No Evil. On June 25, 2013, Graham gave the opportunity to five fans to release the name of her new single on Twitter, and released the single premiere of "Power" at Billboard. com the next day. "Power" is said to be the lead single from her debut album, which currently does not have a release date. As stated on Billboard. com, Graham also released a new single titled "1991" on March 10, 2015.

Influences

Graham cites the late rapper Tupac Shakur, Destiny's Child, The Beatles, Janet Jackson, +moreA. _(rapper)'>M. I. A. , Gwen Stefani, Spice Girls, Madonna, Grace Jones, and the late Prince as musical influences. She describes her sound as "vintage 90's with a modern twist. ".

Personal life

Due to her multilingual upbringing, Graham speaks English, French, and Spanish, as well as some Hebrew and Portuguese.

Graham began dating Cottrell Guidry in 2008; they became engaged in October 2012. By December 2014, they had ended their relationship.

Graham has been a vegan since 2012, having previously been vegetarian.

Since 2017, Graham has resided in Atlanta, Georgia, having previously lived in the Hollywood Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Filmography

Film

YearTitleRoleNotes
1998The Parent TrapJackie
2004Johnson Family VacationDancer
200917 AgainJamie
2011The RoommateKim Johnson
2011Honey 2Maria Bennett
2011Dance FuChaka LovebellDirect-to-video
2012Boogie TownIngrid
2014AddictedDiamond
2015MuseMuseShort film
2017All Eyez on MeJada Pinkett
2017Where's the MoneyAlicia
2018How It EndsSamantha
2018The Holiday CalendarAbby Sutton
2019The Poison RoseRose
2020Cut Throat CityDemyra
2020EmperorDelores
2020Operation Christmas DropErica Miller
2022Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The MovieApril O'NeilMain voice role
2022HeatwaveClaire Valens
2022Love in the VillaJulie Hutton

Television

YearTitleRoleNotes
2002Lizzie McGuirePosse Member #2Episode: "You're a Good Man, Lizzie McGuire"
2003Strong MedicineAshley CollinsEpisode: "Degeneration"
2003Malcolm in the MiddleValEpisode: "Watching the Baby"
2004Joan of ArcadiaAngelaEpisode: "No Bad Guy"
2004Like FamilyGirlEpisode: "Romancing the Home"
2004Grounded for LifeLauraEpisode: "Psycho Therapy"
2006+more'>The O. C. KimEpisode: "The Undertow"
2006CSI: Crime Scene InvestigationTishaEpisode: "Poppin' Tags"
2007GreekDancerEpisode: "The Rusty Nail"
2007Hell on EarthFeliciaTelevision film
2008-2009Hannah MontanaAllison3 episodes
2008Our First ChristmasBernieTelevision film
2009-2017The Vampire DiariesBonnie BennettMain role
2012RidiculousnessHerselfEpisode #2. 12
2012Oh Sit!HerselfEpisode #1. 10
2013Hell's KitchenHerselfEpisode: "Winner Chosen"
2013The Show with VinnyHerselfEpisode #1. 7
2014Whose Line Is It Anyway?HerselfEpisode #10. 1
2015StalkerChristine HarperEpisode: "Love Kills"
2018-2020Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja TurtlesApril O'NeilMain voice role
2019Drop the MicHerselfEpisode: "Kat Graham vs. Shameik Moore / Nikki Glaser vs. Brad Williams"
2020Fashionably YoursLaurenTelevision film
2020-presentTrolls: TrollsTopiaRhythm & BluesMain voice role
2021Nickelodeon's UnfilteredHerselfEpisode: "Otter Docs & Polka Dots"
2022The Masked SingerRobogirlEpisode: "Muppets Night"
.

Discography

Studio albums

TitleYear
Roxbury DriveReleased: September 25, 2015 * Label: Sound Zoo Records * Formats: Digital download
Love Music Funk MagicReleased: June 2, 2017 * Label: Sound Zoo Records * Formats: Digital download
Toro Gato: Part II (Deluxe Edition) (as Toro Gato)Released: January 28, 2022 * Label: Toro Gato * Formats: NFT, Cassette tape+Vinyl+NFT

Extended plays

TitleYearPeak chart positions
US Heat
RemixesReleased: July 26, 2011 * Label: Perezcious Records * Format: Free digital download-
Against the WallReleased: May 29, 2012 * Label: A&M/Octone Records * Formats: CD, digital download4
TORO GATO: PART I (as Toro Gato)Released: September 10, 2021 * Label: Toro Gato * Formats: NFT-
TORO GATO: PART II (as Toro Gato)Released: January 28, 2022 * Label: Toro Gato * Formats: NFT-

Singles

As lead artist

TitleYearPeak chart positionsAlbum
USUS DanceUK Pop Club
"I Want It All"2010---N/A
"Sassy"2010---N/A
"Cold Hearted Snake"2010---N/A
"Put Your Graffiti on Me"2012-5-Against the Wall
"Wanna Say"2012-25-Against the Wall
"Power"2013---N/A
"1991"2015---Roxbury Drive
"Secrets" (featuring Babyface)2015---Roxbury Drive
"All Your Love"2016---Love Music Funk Magic
"Sometimes"2017-46Love Music Funk Magic
"If Eye Could Get UR Attention"2018--2Love Music Funk Magic
"SWIM" (as Toro Gato)2021TORO GATO: PART I

As featured artist

TitleYearPeak chart positionsAlbum
USUK
"I Got It from My Mama" (+moream'>will. i. am featuring uncredited vocals by Kat Graham)20073138Songs About Girls
"One More Chance" (will. i. am featuring uncredited vocals by Kat Graham)2007-97Songs About Girls
"The Donque Song" (will. i. am featuring Snoop Dogg and uncredited vocals by Kat Graham)2007--Songs About Girls
"Dog Day Afternoon" (Ras Kass with Doc Hollywood featuring Kat Graham and Dirt Nasty)2012--Spit No Evil
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Music videos

As lead artist

TitleYearDirector(s)
"Boom Kat"2009Adam Forstadt
"My Boyfriend's Back"2009Kevin Boston
"I Want It All"2010Lance Drake
"Sassy"2010Adam Forstadt and Paul Hogan
"Cold Hearted Snake"2010Kevin Boston
"Love Will Do Without An Escapade"2011Bille Woodruff
"Heartkiller" (Lyric Video)2012Roi Hernandez
"Put Your Graffiti on Me"2012Benny Boom
"Wanna Say"2013Benny Boom
"Power" (Lyric Video)2013Kat Graham
"Power"2013Byron Atienza
"1991"2015Dano Cerny
"1991" (Cities at Night Remix Version)2015Laurence Shanet and Morgan Miller
"Secrets"2015Darren Genet
"Star F*cker"2016Roi Hernandez by Electric Giant Limited
"All Your Love"2016Darren Genet
"Sometimes"2017Marc Cleary and Oskar Rodriguez
"Magic"2017Dennis Leupold
"Time = $"2018Marc Cleary and Oskar Rodriguez
"Baby"2018Marc Cleary and Oskar Rodriguez
"Off"2018Marc Cleary and Oskar Rodriguez
"Just Luv Me"2018Marc Cleary and Oskar Rodriguez
"Glory"2018Marc Cleary
"Dia De Los Muertos"2018Marc Cleary
"SWIM"2021Darren Genet ASC
"White Flag"2022Darren Genet ASC

As featured artist

"Slacker"2002Tech N9neBen Mor
2002"Why I Love You"B2KErik White
"Wanna B Where U R (ThisIzzaLuvSong)"2003Floetry featuring Mos DefNzingha Stewart
2003"No L. O. +moreV. E. "Jhené AikoN/A
2003"Salt Shaker"Ying Yang Twins featuring Lil Jon & The East Side BoyzNzingha Stewart
2003"The Way I Am"Knoc-Turn'al featuring Snoop DoggGil Green
"Used to Love U"2004John LegendBen Mor
"Lonely"2005AkonGil Green
2005"What If"112Fat Cats
"What You Want (When U Want It)"2006The FrontlineRock Jacobs
"B. U. D. D. Y. "2007Musiq SoulchildSanaa Hamri
"One More Chance"2008will. i. amScott Speer
2008"Siempre Ausente"AKWIDSam Ketay and Zosimo Maximo
"Somebody to Love (Remix)"2010Justin Bieber featuring UsherDave Meyers
2010"Just a Dream"NellySanji
"Looking for Love"2011Diddy & Dirty Money featuring UsherColin Tilley
2011"Broken Down"Kevin HammondTim Nackashi
2011"Black and Jewish (Black and Yellow Parody)"Kali Hawk and Kat GrahamJames Davis and Rachel Goldenberg
"Really Don't Care"2014Demi Lovato featuring Cher LloydRyan Pallotta
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Tour

The Fantanas (2004-2006) * The Black Eyed Peas Black Blue & You Tour (2007) * The Vampire Diaries Tour - Q&A With The Cast (2010) * 2012 National Promo Tour (2012)

Awards and nominations

YearAwardCategoryWorkResult
2010Teen Choice AwardsScene Stealer FemaleThe Vampire DiariesNominated
2011Teen Choice AwardsScene Stealer FemaleThe Vampire DiariesWon
2011Youth Rock AwardsRockin' Actress (TV)The Vampire DiariesNominated
2012Teen Choice AwardsActress Fantasy/Sci-FiThe Vampire DiariesNominated
2013Teen Choice AwardsActress Fantasy/Sci-FiThe Vampire DiariesNominated
2014Teen Choice AwardsActress Fantasy/Sci-FiThe Vampire DiariesNominated
2014Black Women in Film AssociationCreative AwardContributions in the industryWon
2015MTV Fandom AwardsMTV Ship of The Year (with Ian Somerhalder)The Vampire DiariesNominated
2015Teen Choice AwardsChoice TV: Chemistry (with Ian Somerhalder)The Vampire DiariesNominated
2015Teen Choice AwardsChoice TV: Scene StealerThe Vampire DiariesNominated
2016Teen Choice AwardsActress Fantasy/Sci-FiThe Vampire DiariesNominated
2016Teen Choice AwardsChoice TV: Chemistry (with Ian Somerhalder)The Vampire DiariesNominated
2017Teen Choice AwardsChoice Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV ActressThe Vampire DiariesWon
2019Westfield Film FestivalHumanitarian awardWork with refugees, animals and human rights activismWon
2020PETA: 40th Anniversary and Holiday PartyHumanitarian AwardAnimal activismWon

20th-century African-American women singers

Living people

21st-century African-American women singers

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