Martin Lawrence, one of the leading actors in Hollywood, was born on April 16, 1965, in West Germany. Even though he spent his early years in the country of his birth, Lawrence was raised in America. The family moved to the United States after his father left the military. He was seven years old at the time.
Lawrence’s parents divorced a year after moving to the United States. It was at this moment that his trouble began. After the divorce, his mother moved him and his five siblings into the troubled King Square housing project, where he attended Dodge Park Elementary. As an eight-year-old kid growing up in a very troubled environment, Lawrence rarely saw his father. This might be one of the major reasons why he was found engaging in street fights with other kids in the neighbourhood.
Lawrence’s upbringing and exposure to street fights at a very young age led to behavioural issues that almost ruined his career. In 1995, while on set filming “A Thin Line Between Love and Hate,” he exploded in a fit of fury, which led him to be hospitalized.
Also in 1996, he acted erratically and was arrested for waving a pistol in a threatening manner at Ventura Boulevard in Los Angeles, claiming some people were trying to kill him. Shortly after that, he was hospitalized once again due to exhaustion and dehydration. A year later, Lawrence was arrested for assaulting a man at a Hollywood nightclub.
Amid the numerous arrests, hospitalizations and lawsuits, Lawrence still rose to fame in the 1990s, establishing himself as a leading actor in Hollywood. He began his career as Maurice Warfield in “What’s Happening Now!!” from 1987 to 1988. He also starred in the Fox sitcom “Martin,” the “Bad Boys” series, and films including “House Party,” “Boomerang,” “A Thin Line Between Love and Hate,” Nothing to Lose,” “Life,” “Blue Streak,” “Big Momma’s House,” “Black Knight,” “Open Season,” and “Wild Hogs.” Also, in 2023, he earned a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Lawrence, despite starring in some box office disappointments such as “Black Knight,” saw many of his films achieve blockbuster status. “Big Momma’s House 2” debuted at No. 1 in North America, earning nearly $28 million in its opening weekend. “Bad Boys for Life” was also a financial hit, grossing $112 million in its first four days.
Over the years, Lawrence has built an empire for himself that extends far beyond acting and comedy. This shows his ability to multitask, rebound from setbacks, and put his money to good use. Here, Billionaire Africa showcases his thriving enterprises and delves into his wealth.
1. RUNTELDAT ENTERTAINMENT
Lawrence founded his film production company, Runteldat Entertainment, in 2002. Since its inception, Runteldat Entertainment, whose primary focus is comedy and entertainment, has been involved in the production of several movies, especially the ones featuring Lawrence.
Some of their big hits include “Martin Lawrence Live: RunTteldat, which grossed nearly $20 million at the box office against a production budget of $3 million in 2002, “Black Knight, “Big Momma’s House”, “Martin: The Reunion” in 2022; and other amazing films
Runtelday has since become a popular name in the entertainment industry due to the consistent production of quality, entertaining content that caters to diverse audiences. All thanks to the artistic vision and innovative storytelling of the founder, Lawrence.
2. REAL ESTATE EMPIRE
Aside from making great entrepreneurial strides through his production company, Lawrence also built an impressive real estate portfolio over the years.
For many years, he owned a big mansion in Beverly Hills, where he married his ex-wife, Gibbs. After their divorce in 2012, Lawrence listed the mansion for rent with an asking price of $200,000 per month. A year later, the house was put on the market for $26.5 million but was eventually sold to Bruce Makowsky for $17.2 million. Subsequently, Lawrence bought a property in Los Angeles for $6.63 million.
Lawrence is also an astute investor in commercial real estate. His investments include various office buildings and retail stores in key urban locations like Los Angeles and New York City. Also, his involvement in the development of “Hollywood Hills Country Club” near his former Bel Air residence reveals his foresight in real estate development.
Lawrence’s diversified real estate investment showcases his uncanny business intelligence and commitment to building wealth by taking advantage of profitable opportunities.
3. MARTIN: THE REUNION NFT
On June 10, 2022, Lawrence launched his first NFT collection titled “Martin: The Reunion” in partnership with the pioneering company NMKR, which provides a holistic digital art platform to mint, view, and trade NFTs. The 30 unique art pieces showcased Lawrence in various scenes from the popular TV show “Martin,” triggering the remembrance of beautiful moments for the fans. The pieces were designed by artists who have worked with companies like Disney, Warner Brothers, NFT Space, and others.
Aside from the offering of the digital art pieces, each holder of the NFT collection was invited to the Hollywood premiere of “Martin: The Reunion,” which took place on June 15, 2022, allowing them to engage directly with the legacy of the show and its stars.
According to a report by Crypto Globe, the first NFT from this collection was sold for 3000 ADA tokens, showing people’s great interest in the collection.
4. MARTIN LAWRENCE CREATIVE THINKING JOURNAL
During the COVID-19 lockdown, Lawrence collaborated with Shawn Gold of Pilgrim Soul to develop the Martin Lawrence Creative Thinking Journal. The creation of this journal was largely motivated by Lawrence’s willingness to keep his creativity alive as he couldn’t tour during this time.
The journal was designed to trigger creativity and innovative thinking among users. It has over 50 creative exercises and challenges that prompt users to see the world differently, unleash their own creativity, and build more productive habits. The journal was created to be used in a relaxed state of mind, during activities such as meditation, exercise etc
The cover art for the “Martin Lawrence Edition” was created by Washington DC street artist and painter Clarence James. Currently, the journal is second in the Pilgrim Soul’s best-selling creative thinking journal series.