Nia Long was born on the 30th October 1970 in Brooklyn, New York. She is an actress and music video director. She is best known for her roles in Big Momma's House, Soul Food and Are We There Yet? At school she studied ballet, tap, jazz, gymnastics, guitar and acting. She graduated from Westchester High School in 1989. Due to the lack of employment opportunities in the Arts in Los Angeles when Nia and her mother first arrived there, Nia's mother took various low-paying jobs (despite having two master's degrees). The family suffered through financial struggle for years, which motivated Nia's desire for success. Her first notable role was a three-year contract role as Kathryn "Kat" Speakes on the soap opera Guiding Light, Nia portrayed Kat from 1991 to 1994. From 1994 to 1995, she played Will Smith's love interest on The Fresh prince of Bel-Air. In 2003, she joined the cast of the drama Third Watch where she played Officer Sasha Monroe until the series ended in 2005. In 2005 and 2006, Nia appeared on Everwood as Cassie. She also appeared on Boston Legal during its 2006-2007 season. She has been in all three of the Big Momma's House movies but so far hasn't had a big hit movie on her credits.