Early life[ edit ] Brooks was born and raised in Austin, Texas , where he attended L. He then left to pursue an acting career. Career[ edit ] Brooks' early work includes being a Calvin Klein underwear model. He appeared in Glory Road , portraying Harry Flournoy , an athlete at Texas Western University when the five starting black players beat Kentucky for the national championship. He acted in the film In the Valley of Elah. He plays the "new boyfriend" in a recent State Farm Insurance television commercial alongside former The Game co-star Gabrielle Dennis.
American films[ edit ] Brooks made her screen debut in the silent The Street of Forgotten Men , in an uncredited role in Soon, however, she was playing the female lead in a number of silent light comedies and flapper films over the next few years, starring with Adolphe Menjou and W. Fields , among others. Brooks had an on-and-off affair with Walter Wanger , head of Paramount Pictures , and after her small roles in , both Paramount and MGM offered her contracts. Wanger tried to encourage her to take the MGM contract, so as to avoid rumors that she only got the Paramount contract because of her association with him, but she decided to go with its offer anyhow. A hobo, Richard Arlen, happens on the murder scene and convinces Brooks to disguise herself as a young boy and escape the law by "riding the rails" with him. In a hobo encampment, or "jungle," they meet another hobo, Wallace Beery.