The exceptionally talented American actor Alex R. Hibbert, made a dazzling entry onto the Hollywood stage with his mesmerizing portrayal of the young Chiron in Barry Jenkins’ extraordinary masterpiece, “Moonlight,” released in 2016. Despite his limited prior acting experience, Alex’s depiction of the troubled young boy profoundly resonated with both audiences and critics alike. Recently, his devoted fans were disheartened to learn of his departure from his beloved character in the popular TV series, “The Chi.” No official reason was given by the TV producers. Fans assumed that he was shifting his focus towards new and exciting endeavors.
- 1 Early years
- 2 Education
- 3 Early Career
- 4 Further success – notable movie and TV projects
- 5 Interesting Facts about Alex Hibbert
- 6 Personal Life
- 7 Appearance
- 8 Net worth
Alex R. Hibbert was born on 4 July 2004, in New York City., and for the first seven years of his life, he called Queens his home. Details about his father remained elusive, although he had an older half-sister named Robin. However, in 2011, a significant change took place when his mother, Donna Wellington, relocated them to Miami, bringing them closer to his grandmother, Hillary Frye. Little did he know that this move to a challenging neighborhood in Miami, Florida, would unwittingly serve as his training ground, preparing him for a thriving career that would bring immense joy and fulfillment in his life.
As a child, Alex had boundless energy, which sometimes led him into mischief. He is a self-confessed troublemaker during middle school. Recognizing his potential, he received guidance to channel his energy constructively, and he was encouraged to enroll in a performing arts program. This advice turned out to be a turning point for him, as he found his place and settled down once he joined the drama program.
When he was still in New York, he went to Number Four School and then when he moved to Miami, he attended Benjamin Franklin K-8 Center. During middle school, he went to a public magnet school called Norland Middle School located in Miami Gardens. This unique educational institution functioned much like a traditional school but stood out by providing students with a diverse range of specialized curriculums, allowing them to select a program tailored to their individual interests. For young Alex, his educational path took him into the world of performing arts, attending classes within a program thoughtfully crafted to nurture and develop his artistic talents. He matriculated at Dr. Michael Krop Senior High School, and has no plans yet of pursuing a college degree.
The path to the entertainment industry is as diverse as the actors themselves, with no one-size-fits-all route to success. For Alex R. Hibbert, his entry into Hollywood, while considered somewhat traditional, was undeniably marked by a stroke of immense luck.
First Audition: Debut in Hollywood
While Hollywood tales often feature unique and unconventional journeys, Alex’s initial foray into the industry was a blend of the conventional and the fortuitous. Enrolled in a drama school, he, along with several of his schoolmates, attended an audition for a movie role that would ultimately become beloved by fans and critics. Interestingly, it was one of his drama teachers, Tanisha Cidel, who encouraged him to take a chance at this audition; coincidentally, Tanisha herself portrayed the role of a principal in the same movie.
He was accompanied by his grandmother to the venue and the audition was conducted by none other than the movie’s writer and director, Barry Jenkins. Alex distinctly remembers the director’s instruction during the audition: ‘I wanna see you do this emotion – I wanna see you excited.’ This request was quite unique because the character he was auditioning for wasn’t originally written to be exciting, but Barry Jenkins wanted to gauge Alex’s versatility.
Breakthrough Role and the Journey to “Moonlight”
Since the audition invitation came through the drama school, it took two callbacks for him to realize that the movie, “Moonlight,” was not just any production; it was a massive cinematic endeavor. Initially, he assumed it was for a school theater production, unaware of the scale of the project he was entering.
Being in the film would ultimately shape his career, as Alex portrayed the younger version of the main character, Chiron, in a narrative structured into three distinct acts. His role demanded a wide range of facial expressions to convey the challenges of growing up in a troubled neighborhood. Alex rose to the occasion, and Barry Jenkins, the director, praised his unique ability to fully immerse himself in the character—a quality not often seen in child actors. Movie insiders as well as the viewing public knew that he would go places, and it was indeed a remarkable feat. He only had a few speaking lines but his onscreen presence radiated due to his talent. It helped that Alex found parallels between his own upbringing in a tough neighborhood and the one depicted in the movie, which added authenticity to his portrayal.
When “Moonlight” was released in 2016, it garnered attention from local and international award-giving bodies, amassing eight Academy Award nominations and winning three, including Best Picture. The film catapulted Alex into the spotlight, earning recognition from both fans and prominent figures in the movie and TV industry.
Further success – notable movie and TV projects
After “Moonlight,” Alex embarked on two significant milestones in his acting career, each contributing to his ever-growing repertoire and showcasing his versatility in the entertainment industry. Clearly, he benefited well from the successful outcome of his debut movie role.
Marvel’s “Black Panther” (2018)
First on the list was his involvement in the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s box-office phenomenon, “Black Panther.” Although his role in the film was relatively minor, it marked a significant step forward in his career. While he didn’t receive the same level of recognition and accolades as some of the lead actors, the experience of being part of a cinematic juggernaut was undeniably enriching. For a young actor like Alex, having a billion-dollar blockbuster on his acting resume was a substantial achievement in its own right and he was glad he had a moment towards the end of the movie with the main star of the show, the late Chadwick Boseman, who he said was quite inspiring.
BLACK PANTHER (2018)
— One Perfect Shot (@OnePerfectShot) December 13, 2018
Showtime’s “The Chi” (2018 – 2023)
Simultaneously, in that same eventful year, Alex seized a prominent role in the television drama series, “The Chi,” which aired on the Showtime network. In the series, he portrayed Kevin, a character described as a good-natured young man striving to survive in the challenging environment of Chicago’s South Side. The American series captivated viewers with its gritty and intricate narrative, delving into life within a cycle of violence that encompassed gang wars, illicit activities, and pervasive poverty. Alex’s character became intertwined with two other central figures, and their lives underwent a profound transformation following a pivotal shooting incident.
In the eyes of TV insiders and critics, his participation in “The Chi” was regarded as another stroke of luck. The series consistently garnered positive reviews and maintained high TV ratings since its debut in January 2018. His contribution to this compelling project further solidified his reputation as a promising talent in the TV industry.
“Story Ave” – Indie Movie (2023)
Alex was part of the main cast of an indie movie entitled “Story Ave”, starring Luis Guzman and Asante Blackk, co-written and directed by Antonio Torres. He was proud of this project as he promoted it via his Instagram account – it was released in limited theaters on 29 September 2023.
Leaving “The Chi” this 2023
In September 2023, Alex bid a heartfelt farewell to his cherished character, Kevin, as the latest season of “The Chi” unfolded. This significant development was announced through his official Instagram page on which he shared a touching message with his dedicated followers. A portion of his message conveyed his profound gratitude and humility: ‘I am humbled and honored to have been able to bring this character to life and share Kevin’s story with you.’ The response from fans was immediate, as they left comments on his post with heartwarming messages, expressing both their sadness at his departure and their appreciation for the journey they had together in the last four seasons.
While Alex conveyed his immense appreciation for his participation in “The Chi,” it’s worth noting that not all departures from the series were as amicable. Jason Mitchell, a former cast member, was abruptly removed from the show due to harassment complaints filed by his onscreen partner, Tiffany Boone. Another actor, Barton Fitzpatrick left the show followed by rumors that he didn’t like the way his character was written. It was reported that he would be involved with a transgender woman in the storyline. Furthermore, in June 2022, Jasmine Davis left as well, citing discouraging vibes and a negative environment.
Alex’s portrayal of Kevin had evolved remarkably over the seasons, capturing the essence of a young boy grappling with the complexities of adolescence, transforming into a successful gamer with an apartment of his own. This character growth lent a poignant weight to his departure from the series. While the show’s writers offered a concrete explanation for Kevin’s exit from Chicago, Alex himself chose not to disclose his personal motivations for leaving. Fans could only speculate that, at the age of 19, he felt it was the opportune moment to explore new horizons. Alex openly expressed his eagerness to embrace the next phase of his career, eagerly anticipating the unknown opportunities that lay ahead.
Good Burger 2 (2023)
In November 2023, Alex’s new TV series entitled “Good Burger 2” will premiere on the Paramount Plus streaming network. It serves as a sequel of sorts, originating as a sketch on the TV series “All That,” which aired on the Nickelodeon cable channel., which was later adapted into a movie in 1997. In 2015, another sketch aired on the popular “The Tonight Show.”
The premise of the new series revolves around a fast-food restaurant named Good Burger, which explains the title. It reunites two original characters, alongside a fresh ensemble of new characters, one of whom will be portrayed by Alex. This new project likely contributed to his decision to depart from “The Chi.”
Interesting Facts about Alex Hibbert
Struggled to find a balance between real and reel life
In the midst of his burgeoning showbiz career, Alex candidly admitted to a period when he grappled with the delicate art of adjusting to and navigating the stark contrasts between the glitzy world of Hollywood and the grounded reality of his life in Miami. This presented a formidable challenge for a teenager.
At one point, the young actor even harbored a hope that his mother would permit him to pursue homeschooling, a choice that would potentially provide him with a more consistent routine. However, the ebb and flow of his showbiz commitments ultimately led him down a different path. During his high school years, Alex opted for a more traditional educational setting, choosing to attend a brick-and-mortar school. His candid acknowledgment of this internal struggle illuminated his commitment to both his craft and his roots. In doing so, he continued to mature both as an actor and as a young man navigating the complexities of dual identities.
Alex’s motivation in pursuing acting as a career
The depth of Alex’s understanding of life’s harsh realities, combined with his unwavering joy in simple pleasures such as playing games in the park, astounded many entertainment journalists. Whether it was the thrill of jumping up and down on a trampoline or the triumph of winning a game of dodgeball, Alex found delight in the ordinary. It was during the early stages of his acting career that he opened up to interviewers during press conferences, revealing a motivation that set him apart in Hollywood. He made it clear that his pursuit of acting wasn’t driven by a thirst for fame but rather by a profound purpose. His sole aspiration is to labor diligently on behalf of his mother, ensuring her swift and comfortable retirement. Beyond the noble goal of supporting his mother, Alex harbored ambitions to extend his help to others.
His other dreams
As people delved deeper into conversations with Alex, they unearthed the extraordinary layers of his aspirations. The teen actor didn’t merely dream of helping his mom through acting but he also had two other significant dreams that illuminated his character. Firstly, he aspired to play professional football, aiming for excellence on the field. However, as time passed, this dream evolved into a different but equally noble pursuit. He nurtured a vision of becoming a scientist, driven by a burning desire to contribute to the quest for cures to life-threatening diseases, most notably cancer.
Shift of priorities and his mother’s support
By 2021, it became increasingly evident that Alex’s dream of becoming a scientist, once held close to his heart, was gradually fading from the horizon of his future aspirations. At that juncture in his life, he made a resolute decision to forgo the pursuit of a college degree, and instead channel his energy and dedication into his acting career.
In making this life-altering decision, Alex found solace in the understanding and support of his mother. She stood by him, recognizing the immense challenges he faced in attempting to juggle the demands of a rigorous academic pursuit with the rigors of an acting career on the rise. His mother’s unwavering belief in his talent and dreams became an anchor amid the sea of uncertainty, enabling him to embrace his chosen path with conviction.
However, not everyone readily embraced Alex’s decision. He encountered skepticism and doubters who questioned the wisdom of his choices. Many urged him to devise a “Plan B,” an alternative safety net beyond the world of acting. To this chorus of doubts, Alex responded with unwavering determination, resolutely declaring, ‘Why don’t you have a Plan B?’ And I’m like this is what I want to do, this is my dream.’
While he maintains official social media pages including Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, he wasn’t keen on sharing his private life. For instance, since the day he opened up his Instagram account in 2017, he only uploaded 24 posts, most of them updates on his acting career. There were no reports that he was ever involved in any dating rumors or scandals.
Standing at a height of 5ft 7ins (1.70 meters), the African-American actor possesses a distinctive presence that commands attention along with his black hair and black eyes. His has a lean build with toned arms, which complements his dynamic on-screen persona. With a body weight of approximately 132lbs (60kg), he maintains a healthy and fit physique that aligns seamlessly with his active lifestyle.
In the ever-evolving landscape of the entertainment industry, Alex Hibbert has not only earned accolades and critical acclaim, but has also amassed considerable financial success. As of October 2023, authoritative sources estimate his net worth to be over $1 million. With each new project and endeavor, he continues to leave an enduring mark, both as an actor and as a rising star in the world of entertainment.