When you're lucky enough to inherit talents from both of your famous parents, which path do you choose for your career?
It's a question 22-year-old Zoë Kravitz finds herself having to answer. She's the daughter of Grammy-winning rocker Lenny Kravitz and former "Cosby Show" star Lisa Bonet. And while she did get musical chops from her dad, she's chosen to follow her mother into the acting biz. This summer, she'll be seen in the highest-profile film of her young career as a mutant in "X-Men: First Class."
See her sprout wings as Angel Salvadore in the exclusive trailer below, then keep reading to find out why she says life on the road as a musician is not for her.
Lisa Bonet and Lenny Kravitz were married in 1987 on her twentieth birthday. Both came from families with one African American and one Jewish parent. Interestingly, her father was a musician, opera singer Allen Bonet, and his mother was an actress, Roxie Roker of TV's "The Jeffersons." Lisa Bonet left her "Cosby Show" spin-off "A Different World" when she became pregnant, and she gave birth to Zoë in December, 1988.
Bonet and Kravitz divorced when Zoë was five years old. She lived with her mother until she was 11, and later stayed with her father during the school year. In an interview with The Independent, Zoë said that her dad's rock-star life gave her unique experiences, like the time she took two months off of middle school to accompany him on a tour of Europe. She said, "Having
well-known parents is kind of a double-edged sword... It's
given me wonderful opportunities, but people also like to knock you down
because of it, too."
Zoë began acting professionally in 2007 while she was still in high school, first in "No Reservations" with Catherine Zeta-Jones and then "The Brave One" alongside Jodie Foster. She's since appeared in films with Bruce Willis, Pierce Brosnan, Kiefer Sutherland and Zack Galifianakis. She also worked on a film called "Yelling to the Sky" with Gabourey Sidibe, who previously starred in "Precious" with Lenny Kravitz.
Naturally, music still plays an important part of her life. She is the lead singer of the band Elevator Fight that has played shows at South by Southwest and the Roots Picnic. She even played a rock star on the Showtime series "Californication." But she says that life on the road isn't really for her. She told The Independent, "I don't want to be a famous singer, necessarily, and touring is a lot of work. It's a lot of sitting on the bus and waking up, going to the gig, performing, moving on, and that is insane."
Her role in "X-Men: First Class," however, was its own brand of insanity. The movie is a prequel set in the 1960s when Charles Xavier (played by James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) were still friends and not yet enemies. Zoe's character, Angel Salvadore, is a young mutant recruited to join Professor X's first team of heroes.
Angel's superpower is her fly-like wings, which meant Zoë spent much of filming in a harness dangling from wires. She said, "I'd have to stand in strange ways, pretending there are not wires and pretending that I'm flying and floating, like it's the most normal thing in the world." She told MTV that for the film's climax, she spent a full week suspended on wires in the chilly air. But she didn't do all the stunts herself. She said, "They hung my stunt double out of this helicopter over the ocean. I was like, 'Why [can't] I do that?' And they were like, 'Um, no.'"
Next up for Zoë is supposed to be a role in the "Mad Max" reboot "Fury Road," but with its leading man Tom Hardy about to start work on "The Dark Knight Rises," it looks like the long-delayed project will have to wait a while longer.
"X-Men: First Class" opens June 3.