Actress ZULAY HENAO (Zulay) is “on the rise” is what entertainment industry insiders are saying about this talented and gorgeous Medellín, Colombia, native who brings a naturally luminous presence to her performances. She is a rising talent who has drawn Hollywood’s attention, making her one of the entertainment industry’s hottest young stars. Most recently, Henao wrapped a lead role in S. Darko, the continuation of Donnie Darko, directed by Chris Fisher. In the film, she plays a recluse named Baelyn. The film also stars Ed Westwick, Matt Davis and Elizabeth Berkley and is slated for release in 2009.
Born in Medellín, Colombia, and raised in New Jersey, Henao knew from a very early age that she wanted to act. As a youngster, she was always very in tune with her feelings and always related well to others and their pain or emotions. She felt that acting was a natural progression on that innate connection. However, this gorgeous lady didn’t follow the normal route and enrolled in the army. There, she found time to attend Methodist College while she was stationed in Fort Bragg, North Carolina. After serving for three years, she went back home and enrolled in the Acting School for Film and Television in New York City, which she attended for the next three years. It was during this time that her big break came (or what she thought was her big break): she landed her first paying acting job in an indie movie called Saturday Morning, which paid her a whopping $200! Henao didn’t care, as she was hooked and she realized that acting her calling.
Henao’s past credits include a guest-starring role in the Mark Gordon- (Grey’s Anatomy) produced original Lifetime series Army Wives, and subsequently made her television debut in said episode on July 23, 2007. In June of that year, she filmed a guest-starring role on the long-running NBC hit television series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and in August, she wrapped filming a lead role in the Charles Dutton- (Roc) directed Lifetime movie Racing for Time. Earlier in the year, she completed filming the female lead role in Stephen Leeds’ highly anticipated feature film Doorman. In October 2006, she completed filming a lead role in the Belle Avery- (Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead) produced independent film Grizzly Park. Before commencing Grizzly Park, she filmed a beautiful and stylized SAG short film, opposite Jamie Harding (United 93), titled The Heart Is a Hidden Camera. Prior to that, she filmed Universal Pictures’ crime drama Illegal Tender, starring opposite Manny Perez, produced by John Singleton and directed by Franc. Reyes. Concurrently, in May 2006, she also filmed the female lead role in the Columbia Pictures feature film Feel the Noise, produced by Simon Fields, Sofia Sondervan and Jennifer Lopez, in which Henao starred opposite Omarion Grandberry (of B2K).
Paper magazine featured and profiled Henao in the October 2006 issue of in their annual “Un-Hollywood” issue, noticing that she would truly make her presence felt on both the small and big screens.
Henao currently divides her time between Los Angeles and New Jersey.