Sofia Boutella (born April 3, 1982) is an Algerian dancer, model, and actress. She is known mainly for her hip-hop and street dance, and for appearing in Nike Women's advertising campaigns. Boutella has starred as Eva in StreetDance 2 (2012), Ara in Monsters: Dark Continent (2014), Gazelle in Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015), and an alien warrior named Jaylah in Star Trek Beyond (2016). She will be playing the title role in Universal's upcoming film The Mummy (2017).
Boutella was born in the Bab El Oued district of Algiers, the daughter of jazz musician Safy Boutella and an architect mother. She started classical dance education at the age of 5, and at the age of 10 in 1992, she left Algeria with her family, and moved to France, where she started rhythmic gymnastics, and joined the French national team at age 18.
Boutella took up hip hop and street dance, and was part of a group called the Vagabond Crew, which won the Battle of the Year in 2006. She also participated in a group called "Chienne de Vie and Aphrodites" created by Momo from the Vagabond Crew. Sofia is a graduate of Berklee College of Music.
Boutella had been rehearsing since age 17 with choreographer Blanca Li. She has danced in several film and television appearances, as well as commercials and concert tours.
Her breakthrough arrived in 2007, when she was picked for the Jamie King choreography for Nike, as a role model of femininity and hip hop. This was a major boost in her career and led to more work alongside stars like Madonna, in her Confessions Tour, and Rihanna.
Boutella auditioned for the Michael Jackson This Is It concerts but, although successful, could not attend due to the extension of the Madonna tour whose dates coincided with the Jackson residency. In February 2011, she was the main character in the music video for "Hollywood Tonight" by Michael Jackson.
Boutella played the lead character Eva in the drama film StreetDance 2, the sequel to StreetDance 3D, and co-starred in Kingsman: The Secret Service. She appeared as the alien warrior Jaylah in Star Trek Beyond, released on July 22, 2016.
Her influences include Fred Astaire, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Daniel Day-Lewis, and Bob Fosse.