Amandla Stenberg (born October 23, 1998) is an American actress and singer. She is best known for her portrayal of Rue in The Hunger Games. She is also known for releasing her debut single, entitled "Let My Baby Stay", as part of the original motion picture soundtrack for the 2017 film Everything, Everything, in which she stars.
Early life and education
Stenberg was born in Los Angeles County, California, the child of Karen Brailsford, a spiritual counselor and writer, and Tom Stenberg. Her mother is African American, her father is Danish, and her paternal grandmother had Greenlandic Inuit ancestry. Her first name means "power" or "strength" in Zulu.
At the age of four, Stenberg started doing catalog modeling shoots for Disney. She has appeared in commercials for clients such as Boeing. In 2011, she appeared in her first feature film, Colombiana, as a younger version of Zoe Saldana's character. Her career breakthrough came when she was cast as Rue in the 2012 film The Hunger Games. She voiced Bia in the 2014 animated film Rio 2. Stenberg had a recurring role on season one of Sleepy Hollow. In the summer of 2015, she played series regular Halle Foster on Mr. Robinson.
In 2013, Stenberg began performing on the violin and singing harmonies at LA venues with singer/songwriter Zander Hawley as Honeywater. The folk-rock duo known as released their first EP in August 2015. The British Dazed magazine named Stenberg "one of the most incendiary voices of her generation" when it featured her on its Autumn 2015 cover. Stenberg has spoken publicly on social media about cultural appropriation, including her video "Don't Cash Crop My Cornrows" and admonishing Kylie Jenner for her hairstyle.
Stenberg is the co-author, with Stranger Comics' Sebastian Jones, of the comic book Niobe: She is Life, the first issue of which was published in November 2015.
In 2017, she starred in the romantic drama Everything, Everything, directed by Stella Meghie, and co-starring Nick Robinson. She will also play the lead in Amma Asante's World War II drama Where Hands Touch.
Stenberg considers herself an intersectional feminist. She is outspoken about her political views in interviews and on social media, and was named "Feminist of the Year" in 2015 by the Ms. Foundation for Women.
Stenberg identifies as non-binary, and previously came out as bisexual; however in an interview for Elle's September 2016 issue she was quoted as saying in part, "Bisexual is a word I am not too attached to [...] it implies a dichotomy that doesn't take into account trans people. So maybe pansexual is more accurate for me."
She has two older half-sisters on her father's side.