Tell Me Who I Am
Taraji P Henson has captured the hearts of many, whether she’s playing your favourite character on screen or strutting the red carpet in designs that have wowed the fashion world.
In a span of only three years, Henson has become one of the most powerful actresses in Hollywood; she’s garnered an army of loyal #cookiemonsters with her award-winning role in the drama series Empire, portrayed a NASA legend in the Oscar-nominated Hidden Figures, and even transformed into a mind-reader in the 2019 rom-com What Men Want. And let’s not forget that she also received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at the beginning of the year.
And so, it’s only right to let some of that Taraji magic rub off on you with these new titles.
In 2015, the whole world stood still when Taraji P Henson walked into our lives as Cookie Lyon, a woman released from prison trying to reclaim her place in Lee Daniel’s hip hop drama Empire, about a family fighting for control of a multi-million dollar company.
It was a career-defining role for the actress who had previously received an Academy Award nomination, and one that earned Henson’s Cookie Lyon a cult following from fans all around the world. Because who wouldn’t love a character who was a blunt, unapologetic and all-round badass queen of clapbacks and shade who dishes quotes like “The streets ain’t made for everybody. That’s why they made sidewalks.”
All while being sassy and showing us how to perfectly layer fur on print.
So good was her performance that in 2015 Henson became the first black woman to win a Critics Choice Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series. Henson was also won a Golden Globe for the role and nominated for an Emmy twice – in 2015 and 2016.
Taraji P Henson and Tyler Perry have had a great working relationship over the years since he first cast her in his movie The Family that Preys in 2008.
At the height of the gender pay-gap debate in Hollywood, the actress revealed in an interview that Perry was the first producer to pay her half a million dollars.
In 2018, the duo re-united yet again in the psychological thriller Acrimony, where Henson stars as Melinda Gayle, a wife who endures a bad marriage to a cheating husband (Lyric Bent, She’s Gotta Have It) until she finally snaps, in the classic “hell hath no fury like a woman scorned” theme.
The 2019 romantic comedy What Men Want follows Henson as Ali Davis, a sports agent who’s having a hard time gaining the recognition and respect she deserves in a male dominated world. But her luck soon changes after she drinks special tea given to her by a psychic (played by Erykah Badu), developing an ability to hear men’s inner thoughts and use it to her advantage.
Stream What Men Want on DStv Now.