Bernie Mac’s Nessa
One of burgeoning young stars, Hollywood television and film actress Camille Winbush acquired a number of accolades while portraying ‘Nessa,’ the niece of comedian Bernie Mac, on Fox’s comedy “The Bernie Mac Show” (2001-2006). For her efforts, she won three Image Awards and a Young Artist Award.
Before the massive victory, Winbush earned a Young Artist nod for her fine performance in 1995’s series “Minor Adjustments,” had a recurring role in “7th Heaven” (1996-1999), as well as guest starred in numerous shows, including “NYPD Blue” (1998). As for films, she has worked with such actors as Michelle Pfeiffer in Dangerous Minds (1995), Arnold Schwarzenegger in Eraser (1996) and Forest Whitakerin in Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999).
Off camera, Winbush is a successful young entrepreneur. She has an ice cream parlor named “Baked Ice” in Pasadena, California, which she opened in 2004. Helped by her mother and aunt, “Baked Ice” made a profit of more than $100,000 in its first year. Recently, 16-year-old Winbush publicized on a talk show that she was franchising her company. She planned to open another bakery in Atlanta, Georgia.
Childhood and Family:
Camille Winbush was born on February 9, 1990, in Culver City, Los Angeles, California. A child star, she started a career in showbiz when she was only a little girl, playing Lucy Wilkes in the futuristic action series “Viper” (1994). Apart from acting, Camille is also a gymnast and entrepreneur.
A Los Angeles native, Camille Winbush was introduced to the world of acting early. When she was 4, the motivated girl broke into the small screen by portraying Lucy Wilkes in a sci-fi series called “Viper,” and made her television film debut in the Image-winning Special What About Your Friends, the following year. Also in 1995, she made the move into the silver screen with the minor role of Tyeisha Roberts in the Michelle Pfeiffer starring vehicle Dangerous Minds, a biopic directed by John N. Smith. Winbush’s promising talent was better shown when she received a Young Artist’s Best Performance by an Actress Under Ten nomination for her portrayal of daughter Emma Aimes in the sitcom “Minor Adjustments” (1995).
Winbush continued with guest spots in such series as “Brotherly Love” (1995), “Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper” (1997), “NYPD Blue” (1998), “Ladies Man” and “Any Day Now” (both 1999), a recurring role in the long-running drama series “7th Heaven” (1996-1999, as Lynn Hamilton) as well as a voice-over work in the 1997 animated series “Recess,” providing the voice of Ashley ‘Ashley T’ Tomossian. She was also seen in movies director Chuck Russell’s Eraser (1996), in which she was featured along side action hero Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the crime/thriller Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999), starring Forest Whitakerin in the title role.
In 2000, Winbush was featured in Disney’s musical television film Geppetto and sang on the soundtrack. We also could heard her voice in the animation films Dinosaur (2000) jointly directed by Eric Leighton and Ralph Zondag, as well as The Tangerine Bear (2000), opposite Marlon Wayans, Trisha Yearwood, Jenna Elfman and Orlando Brown.
Decorating the scene for almost seven years, the teen Winbush finally achieved her big break in 2001 when she landed a regular in the Fox comedy “The Bernie Mac Show.” As Vanessa “Nessa” Thomkins, the niece of stand up comedian Bernie Mac, the young actress was so impressive that she was awarded the 2006 Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a TV Series (Comedy or Drama) - Leading Young Actress. The role also brought her four Image nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress, which she won in 2004, 2005 and 2006. Winbush went on to earn countless nominations, including two BET Comedy nods, until the show came to an end in 2006.
During the flourishing stints, Winbush appeared as Vinetta in an episode of “Strong Medicine” (2003) and Tisha in the medical series “ER” in the episode of “Skin” (2005).