John David Washington was born on July 28, 1984 to actress Pauletta Washington and actor Denzel Washington in Los Angeles, California. He has one brother, Malcolm and two sisters, Katia, and Olivia. He graduated from Campbell Hall School where he served as a letterman in basketball, football, and track.
After high school Washington attended Morehouse College after receiving a full scholarship to play football. He had a very successful football career. Being closely connected to his father initially turned him off to acting which made him pursue his career in football. While at Morehouse he set a school record with 1,198 yards with a 5.6 yard average and nine touchdowns and added 10 receptions for 69 yards in his senior year. In 2005 he was honored by D2Football.com with the title of ‘National Player of the Week’. The next year he signed a contract with the St. Louis Rams and joined their team as an undrafted free agent. After being released from the team Washington then played in NFL Europe for the Rhein Fire. After being released from the Fire, he was drafted by the California Redwoods, who later changed their name to the Sacramento Mountain Lions, of the United Football League in their 2009 premiere season draft. He stayed with the Mountain Lions and then returned for the fourth season in 2012 until the League abruptly folded.
Washington is most known for his role as Ricky Jerret in HBO’s comedy series Ballers upon which he earned an Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series award at the NAACP Image Awards. In September of 2017 he was cast in Spike Lee’s new film the BlacKkKlansman playing Ron Stallworth, an undercover police detective investigating the Ku Klux Klan during the era of the Black Panther Party. Some other films Washington has appeared in are Monsters and Men (2017), Monsters (2017), and The Old Man & the Gun (2018) which is scheduled to be released on September 28th.
Washington currently resides in Los Angeles, California.