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Alfre Woodard

Alfre Woodard

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Also Known As: Alfre Ette Woodard Died:
Born: November 8, 1952 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA Profession: actress, producer

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

One of the most accomplished and talented African-American actresses of her generation, Alfre Woodard earned an Oscar nomination and multiple Emmy wins in a prolific film and TV career that spanned over three decades. Woodard worked primarily in drama, where she was celebrated for her grounding force in "Passion Fish" (1992), "Crooklyn" (1994), "How to Make an American Quilt" (1995) and "Down in the Delta" (1998), though she occasionally offered up her uninhibited wit in "Beauty Shop" (2005) and "Desperate Housewives" (ABC, 2004-2012). Among Woodard's most praised performances were TV movies that explored the African-American experience, including James Baldwin's "Go Tell it on the Mountain" (PBS, 1985), "The Piano Lesson" (CBS, 1995), "Miss Evers' Boys" (HBO, 1997) and the TV movie remake of the feature "Steel Magnolias" (Lifetime, 2012). She also shown in guest roles, including her turn as a mentally ill mother on the hit vampire series "True Blood" (HBO, 2008-14). Woodard never considered herself a star but rather a working actress, though her rich gallery of characterizations - whether rural and poverty-stricken or educated women in positions of power - embodied an instinctual savvy and realistic...

One of the most accomplished and talented African-American actresses of her generation, Alfre Woodard earned an Oscar nomination and multiple Emmy wins in a prolific film and TV career that spanned over three decades. Woodard worked primarily in drama, where she was celebrated for her grounding force in "Passion Fish" (1992), "Crooklyn" (1994), "How to Make an American Quilt" (1995) and "Down in the Delta" (1998), though she occasionally offered up her uninhibited wit in "Beauty Shop" (2005) and "Desperate Housewives" (ABC, 2004-2012). Among Woodard's most praised performances were TV movies that explored the African-American experience, including James Baldwin's "Go Tell it on the Mountain" (PBS, 1985), "The Piano Lesson" (CBS, 1995), "Miss Evers' Boys" (HBO, 1997) and the TV movie remake of the feature "Steel Magnolias" (Lifetime, 2012). She also shown in guest roles, including her turn as a mentally ill mother on the hit vampire series "True Blood" (HBO, 2008-14). Woodard never considered herself a star but rather a working actress, though her rich gallery of characterizations - whether rural and poverty-stricken or educated women in positions of power - embodied an instinctual savvy and realistic viewpoint that placed her in a league of her own.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Lion King, The (2019)
2.
 Burning Sands (2017)
4.
 So B. It (2016)
5.
 Knucklehead (2015)
6.
7.
 Annabelle (2014)
8.
 12 Years a Slave (2013)
9.
 Steel Magnolias (2012)
10.
 Poliwood (2009)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1982:
Played Marsha Fulbright on the short-lived CBS supernatural detective drama, "Tucker's Witch"
1985:
Played Roz Dupree on the short-lived NBC sitcom "Sara"
1991:
Again teamed romantically with Glover in Lawrence Kasdan's "Grand Canyon"
1992:
First credit as producer (associate) "The Colors of Love"
1995:
Offered a compelling performance in the CBS TV-movie "The Piano Lesson"
1995:
Played Maya Angelou's daughter in the female ensemble drama "How to Make an American Quilt"
1996:
Portrayed a scientist who favors fleeing from the Borg in "Star Trek: First Contact"
1996:
Delivered a small but incisive turn as the trial judge in the legal thriller "Primal Fear"
1997:
Undertook the role of Berenice in small screen remake of "The Member of the Wedding" (USA Network)
1999:
Appeared with CCH Pounder in "Funny Valentine" (BET/Starz!)
2000:
Appeared in featured role in the film "Love & Basketball"
2000:
Co-starred with Ving Rhames in the Showtime original movie "Holiday Heart"
2000:
Acted in the ensemble of "What's Cooking?"
2001:
Portrayed a psychiatrist's boss in "K-Pax," co-starring Jeff Bridges and Kevin Spacey
2003:
Appeared in the Rosanna Arquette-directed documentary, "Searching for Debra Winger"
2005:
Appeared in the comedy "Beauty Shop" starring Queen Latifah
2008:
Featured in Tyler Perry's "The Family That Preys"
2009:
Earned a Grammy nomination for Best Spoken Word for the Children's album, <i>Nelson Mandela's Favorite African Folktales</i>; Alfre was a producer
2010:
Lent her voice to Marvel's "Black Panther" mini-series
2010:
Cast in the short-lived cop series, "Memphis Beat"
2011:
Had a cameo on "Grey's Anatomy"
2013:
Appeared on short-lived historical drama "Copper"
2014:
Had a multi-character arc on post-apocalyptic drama "The Last Ship"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Bishop Kelley High School: Tulsa , Oklahoma -
Boston University: Boston , Massachusetts - 1974

Notes

"I've been called serious and I've been called seriously goofy. Let me put it this way. I am a founding member of Artists to Free South Africa, and we, as a people, are using our position as a microphone to get something heard that doesn't usually get heard. The State Department's tilt on things is that freedom fighters are terrorists and we're using our organization to address our community the way grass-roots groups around the country use their communities. I am an activist and sincere about that. I can be absolutely unorganized and hysterical . . . or I can be completely cool and hold the ground for everybody else around me." --Alfre Woodard quoted in MOVIELINE, May 1994

"I don't really think of myself as a celebrity. I don't give out anything that would make people come up and talk to me. I'm intensely private. People have always looked at me for one reason or another, but I'm never convinced that they aren't looking at me for some peculiar reason. I mean, I usually wear sort of an Afro hairstyle. I'm in an interracial marriage. [But] it doesn't matter why they're talking about you, it still feels like you're naked. You still have the feeling like you're back in high school or something." --Woodard in MOVIELINE, May 1994

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Roderick Spencer. Stand-up comic, screenwriter, documentarian.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Marion H Woodard. Interior decorator, entrepreneur.
mother:
Constance Woodard.
daughter:
Mavis Spencer. Born c. 1992.
daughter:
Duncan Spencer. Born c. 1994.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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