‘Ghost Protocol’ Cast Bios: Paula Patton Plays Jane Carter

We can hardly wait for the return of Tom Cruise as ‘Ethan Hunt’ in ‘Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol’ and while we count down the days until the December 16, 2011 IMAX film release, we continue our ongoing series introducing you to the ‘Ghost Protocol’ cast.

So far, we have profiled Tom Cruise (‘Ethan Hunt’), Jeremy Renner (as ‘Brandt’) and Simon Pegg (as ‘Benji Dunn’). This time, we are totally psyched to introduce you to Paula Patton, who plays IMF agent, ‘Jane Carter.’

The fourth installment of the ‘Mission: Impossible’ film series marks the first time Paula Patton has teamed up with Tom Cruise. Excited about the opportunity, Paula told ‘The Root’ in July 2011 that working with Tom “was the best experience. There is a reason he is one of the best movie stars ever, because he works so hard and he is so kind to everybody. I learned a tremendous amount working with him.”

During an interview for the December 2011/January 2012 issue of ‘Complex’ magazine, Paula said “making ‘Mission: Impossible’ was a dream come true.” In addition to learning how to perform her own stunts and handle a weapon, Paula also revealed, “one big thing I learned from Tom: the importance of pleasing the audience. The guy’s middle name is ‘Hard Work.’ Just when you think you’re tired, he’s doing a second workout.”

In fact, when Tom announced the Mission: Impossible ‘Ghost Protocol’ film title in Dubai in October 2010, Paula was seated right next to him! And, she isn’t the only one excited about ‘Ghost Protocol,’ ‘Wired Magazine’ named the film one of 2011′s Most Intriguing Movies!

As you can see in the ‘Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol’ trailer, Paula’s character, ‘Jane Carter’ is up for any challenge and she is ready to take whatever action is necessary to help clear IMF’s name. From dressing to the nines in a killer green dress to a wicked left hook, the newest member of the IMF team has got ‘Ethan Hunt’s (Tom Cruise) back!

The elegant actress was born in Los Angeles and grew up across the street from the 20th Century Fox studio lot. Knowing she wanted to work in the entertainment industry from an early age, Paula attended the Hamilton School for the Performing Arts. After graduating from high school, Paula was chosen as one of four young filmmakers to participate in the PBS documentary series, ‘The Ride,’ which followed the four filmmakers as they directed their own documentary films about young people across America.  Paula completed her freshman year of college at the University of California, Berkeley, before transferring to the prestigious University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude.

During an interview with ‘The Root,’ Paula revealed her inspiration to become a professional actress revealing, “Spike Lee is one of my favorite filmmakers. The movie ‘Do the Right Thing’ was a seminal moment in my life. I was in high school and I wanted to be an actress at the time. However, what was available at the time were a lot of best friend roles and really nothing else for African Americans, as I saw it. Then all of the sudden ‘Do the Right Thing’ comes. I’ll never forget seeing that in the theater and how it affected and inspired me.”

While Paula dreamed of becoming an actress, she actually started her showbiz career on the production side. During an interview with FridayMovieEZ, Paula said that working behind the camera, like her position as a production assistant, “helps you understand how a set runs and really appreciate everyone’s job.” Her hard work and perseverance paid off and within a few years, Paula landed on the big screen, co-starring opposite Will Smith in ‘Hitch’ and Academy Award winner, Denzel Washington, in ‘Déjà vu.’ Paula describes her experiences behind the scenes as well as in front of the camera in the video clip below.

FridayMovieEZ Hollywood’s rising star: Paula Patton

Paula continued to land film roles, including starring opposite Kiefer Sutherland in ‘Mirrors’ and ‘Swing Vote,’ co-starring alongside Kevin Costner, Dennis Hopper and Kelsey Grammer but her breakthrough role came as the concerned teacher, ‘Ms. Rain,’ in the Academy Award winning film, ‘Precious.’ Among the many accolades the film received, Paula and her ‘Precious’ co-stars, Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, Mo’Nique and Sherri Shepard, were nominated for Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture for their work in the critically acclaimed film.

After a brief appearance on the small screen as A.D.A. Mikka Von, in ‘Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,’ Paula returned to the silver screen to star in the 2011 comedy, ‘Jumping the Broom.’

In addition to playing a lounge singer in ‘Idlewild’ and modeling for the cover of her husband’s, Robin Thicke, first album, ‘A Beautiful World,’ the multi-talented performer can now add action star to her resume thanks to her role as ‘Jane Carter.’

Premiering in IMAX theaters on December 16, 2011 and released nationwide on December 21, 2011, ‘Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol’ stars Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg (link to bio), Paula Patton, Michael Nyqvist, Vladimir Mashkov, Josh Holloway, Anil Kappor and Léa Seydoux.

What do you think about Paula Patton joining the IMF team? The TomCruise.com team would love to hear from you on Twitter, Facebook, Orkut, Gree and Weibo. To learn more about ‘Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol’ and for the latest Tom Cruise news and events, sign up for the TomCruise.com official newsletter today!