singer-songwriter, record producer, television entertainer, actress, and film producer. In 2009, she introduced her rap alter-ego Bran'Nu.Born into a musical family in McComb, Mississippi and raised in Carson, California, Norwood first appeared in a supporting role on the short-lived ABC sitcom Thea in 1993. Her engagement led to her own star vehicle, successful UPN sitcom Moesha in 1996, and resulted in roles in the 1998 horror sequel I Still Know What You Did Last Summer, and the TV films Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella (1997) and Double Platinum (1999), two of television's best rated special programs.
Bell was born in New York City, the daughter of Robin Bell, owner of the design firm Robin Bell Design, Inc. in New York, and Harvey Siegel. Bell has stated that while she is not Jewish,her father is Jewish and her mother is Protestant, and that she was raised in a "comically dysfunctional family". She has an older brother and two half-sisters.
Bell attended The Chapin School in New York, and Westminster School in Simsbury, Connecticut. For part of her teenage years she lived in Vero Beach, Florida and attended St. Edward's School. She attended Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York before transferring to Rose Bruford College in London where she acted in several theatrical productions including The Seagull and The Pentecost. She remained in London for a year after graduating, before moving to Los Angeles, California.