Alfre Woodard

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Alfre Woodard
Alfre Woodard 2012.jpg
Woodard at Congressional Black Caucus in Johnson C. Smith University in 2012.
BornAlfre Ette Woodard
(1952-11-08) November 8, 1952 (age 61)
Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.
OccupationActress, producer
Years active1978–present
Spouse(s)Roderick Spencer (1983–present)
 
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Alfre Woodard
Alfre Woodard 2012.jpg
Woodard at Congressional Black Caucus in Johnson C. Smith University in 2012.
BornAlfre Ette Woodard
(1952-11-08) November 8, 1952 (age 61)
Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.
OccupationActress, producer
Years active1978–present
Spouse(s)Roderick Spencer (1983–present)

Alfre Ette Woodard (born November 8, 1952) is an American film, stage, and television actress. She has been nominated once for an Academy Award and Grammy Award, 18 times for the Emmy Award (winning four), and has also won a Golden Globe Award and three Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Early life[edit]

Woodard was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, to Constance, a homemaker, and Marion H. Woodard, an entrepreneur and interior designer.[1] Woodard attended Bishop Kelley High School, a private Catholic school in Tulsa. She studied drama at Boston University, from which she graduated.

Career[edit]

Woodard has made numerous appearances in television and motion pictures. She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the 1983 film Cross Creek. In 1993, she starred in the film Passion Fish for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award. She also appeared in the films Heart and Souls, Crooklyn, How to Make an American Quilt, Primal Fear, in Down in the Delta as a single alcoholic mother from Chicago forced to spend a summer with her uncle in Mississippi, and as Lily Sloane, Zefram Cochrane's assistant in Star Trek: First Contact, a performance in the franchise which garnered wide critical acclaim.

Woodard at the premiere of 12 Years a Slave at the 2013 Toronto Film Festival

In 1997, she starred in the HBO film Miss Evers' Boys, for which she won an Emmy Award, a Golden Globe Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, a CableACE Award, an NAACP Image Award and a Satellite Awards.

Woodard's television credits include Hill Street Blues, St. Elsewhere, Faerie Tale Theatre (in "Puss in Boots"), L.A. Law, and Homicide: Life on the Street. Woodard has won four Primetime Emmy Awards for her performances in the series Hill Street Blues, L.A. Law and The Practice, as well as the television movie Miss Evers' Boys. Woodard has received Emmy nominations for Words by Heart, St. Elsewhere, Unnatural Causes, a second nomination for St. Elsewhere, A Mother's Courage: The Mary Thomas Story, The Piano Lesson, Gulliver's Travels, Homicide: Life on the Street and The Water Is Wide.[2]

In 2003, Woodard, took part in the HBO film Unchained Memories, a dramatization of WPA slave narratives. From 2005 to 2006, Woodard starred in the ABC series Desperate Housewives, and received another Emmy nomination for her role as Betty Applewhite. Woodard has appeared on stage in such plays as Map of the World, Drowning Crow, Me & Bessie and Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale. She starred in Tyler Perry's latest film The Family That Preys. In 2009, she appeared in American Violet, playing the mother of a 24-year-old African-American woman wrongfully swept up in a drug raid.

In 2010, she was a guest star in the third season of HBO's True Blood as Ruby Jean Reynolds.[3] and was nominated for an Emmy Award in 2011 for her role.[4][5]

She was most recently seen starring as Lt. Tanya Rice in TNT's original series Memphis Beat, for which she won Gracie Allen Awards for performance in a series. One critic said: "I originally tuned in for Jason Lee, who plays a police detective named Dwight who likes to croon the blues. But I was won over by Alfre Woodard, who plays Dwight’s by-the-book boss."[6] In 2013, she appeared in Ava DuVernay's short film The Door, a part of Miu Miu's Women's Tales series.[7]

Woodard with her husband Roderick Spencer at the 1987 Emmy Awards

Personal life[edit]

Woodard lives in Santa Monica, California, with her husband, writer Roderick Spencer, and their two children, Mavis and Duncan. Woodard follows Christian Science.[8] She is a founder and board member of Artists for a New South Africa and is also active in the Democratic Party. Woodard has also expressed support for same sex marriage.[9] In February 2009, she joined a group of American film directors and actors on a cultural trip to Iran at the invitation of the "House of Cinema" forum in Tehran.[10] Her daughter, Mavis, served as Miss Golden Globe for the 2010 Golden Globe Awards.[11]

Awards and nominations[edit]

YearAwardCategoryFilm or seriesResult
1984Academy AwardsBest Supporting ActressCross CreekNominated
Emmy AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama SeriesHill Street BluesWon
1985Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieWords By Heart WonderworksNominated
1986Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama SeriesSt. ElsewhereNominated
1987Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieUnnatural CausesNominated
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama SeriesL.A. LawWon
1988St. ElsewhereNominated
1989Joe A. Callaway AwardBest ActressThe Winter's TaleWon
CableACE AwardsActress in a Movie or MiniseriesMandelaWon
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, Mini-Series or Television MovieUnnatural CausesWon
1990MandelaWon
Emmy AwardOutstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieA Mother's Courage: The Mary Thomas Story The MagiNominated
1992NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, Mini-Series or Television MovieWon
Los Angeles Film Critics Association AwardBest ActressPassion Fish2rd place
New York Film Critics Circle AwardsNew York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress3rd place
1993Golden Globe AwardBest Supporting Actress – Motion PictureNominated
Independent Spirit AwardsBest Supporting FemaleWon
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion PictureNominated
1994Saturn AwardBest Supporting ActressHeart and SoulsNominated
1995Women in Film Crystal AwardsLife Achievement AwardWon
Emmy AwardOutstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieThe Piano LessonNominated
1996NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, Mini-Series or Television MovieWon
Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or Television MovieWon
Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion PictureHow to Make an American QuiltNominated
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion PictureNominated
Emmy AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieGulliver's TravelsNominated
1997Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieMiss Evers' BoysWon
CableACE AwardsSupporting Actress in a Movie or MiniseriesThe Member of the WeddingNominated
Actress in a Movie or MiniseriesMiss Evers' BoysWon
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion PictureStar Trek: First ContactNominated
Satellite AwardsBest Supporting ActressGulliver's TravelsNominated
1998Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or Television MovieMiss Evers' BoysWon
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic SpecialWon
Satellite AwardsBest Actress – Miniseries or Television FilmWon
Golden Globe AwardBest Actress – Miniseries or Television FilmWon
Emmy AwardOutstanding Guest Actress in a Drama SeriesHomicide: Life on the StreetNominated
1999Independent Spirit AwardsBest Female LeadDown in the DeltaNominated
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Actress in a Motion PictureNominated
Acapulco Black Film FestivalBest ActressNominated
2000Black Reel AwardsBest ActressFunny ValentinesNominated
2001NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Performance in a Youth/Children's Series or SpecialThe Wishing TreeNominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion PictureLove & BasketballWon
Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic SpecialHoliday HeartNominated
Golden Globe AwardBest Actress – Miniseries or Television FilmNominated
Emmy AwardsOutstanding Performer in a Children's SpecialThe Wishing TreeNominated
2002NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Actress in a Motion PictureK-PAXNominated
2003Emmy AwardOutstanding Guest Actress in a Drama SeriesThe PracticeWon
2004NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion PictureRadioWon
2005Character and Morality AwardsBest ActressWon
2006Black Movie AwardsOutstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting RoleSomething NewNominated
BET AwardsBest ActressNominated
Emmy AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieThe Water Is WideNominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy SeriesDesperate HousewivesNominated
Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy SeriesWon
2007Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy SeriesNominated
Black Movie AwardsBest Supporting ActressThe Water Is WideWon
2008Black Reel AwardsBest ActressThe Family That PreysNominated
Emmy AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a MoviePictures of Hollis WoodsNominated
2009NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Actress in a Motion PictureThe Family That PreysNominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama SeriesMy Own Worst EnemyNominated
2010Grammy AwardsBest Spoken Word Album for ChildrenNelson Mandela's Favorite African FolktalesNominated
Black Reel AwardsBest EnsembleAmerican VioletNominated
Best Supporting ActressNominated
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion PictureNominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama SeriesMemphis BeatNominated
2011NAMIC Vision AwardsBest Performance - DramaNominated
Gracie Allen AwardsOutstanding Supporting Actress - Drama SeriesWon
Emmy AwardOutstanding Guest Actress in a Drama SeriesTrue BloodNominated
2012NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama SeriesMemphis BeatNominated
2013Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic SpecialSteel MagnoliasWon
Screen Actors Guild AwardOutstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or Television MovieNominated
Black Reel AwardsBest Supporting ActressWon
Critics' Choice Television AwardBest Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieNominated
Gracie AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Cast in a DramaWon
Emmy AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a MovieNominated
Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association AwardBest Ensemble12 Years a SlaveWon
Southeastern Film Critics AssociationBest EnsembleWon
San Diego Film Critics SocietyBest EnsembleNominated
Phoenix Film Critics SocietyBest EnsembleNominated
Black Film Critics CircleBest EnsembleWon
Detroit Film Critics SocietyBest Ensemble CastNominated
Alliance of Women Film JournalistsBest Ensemble CastNominated
Boston Online Film Critics AssociationBest EnsembleWon
2014Central Ohio Film CriticsBest EnsembleNominated
Georgia Film Critics AssociationBest EnsembleNominated
Black Reel AwardsBest EnsemblePending
Screen Actors Guild AwardOutstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion PicturePending
NAACP Image AwardOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion PicturePending

Filmography[edit]

Film and Television
YearTitleRoleNotes
1978Remember My NameRita
1979Freedom RoadKatie
1980HealtHSally Benbow
1981Sophisticated Gents, TheThe Sophisticated GentsEvelyn Evers
1982The Ambush MurdersKariha Ellsworth
1982–83Tucker's WitchMarcia Fulbright12 episodes
1983Hill Street BluesDoris Robson3 episodes
1983Cross CreekGeechee
1985SaraRozalyn Dupree13 episodes
1985, 1988St. ElsewhereDr. Roxanne Turner13 episodes
1986ExtremitiesPatricia
1987MandelaWinnie Mandela
1987The Life SaverAndrea Crawford
1988ScroogedGrace Cooley
1989Miss FirecrackerPopeye Jackson
1989A Mother's Courage: The Mary Thomas StoryMary Thomas
1990Blue BayouJessica Filley
1991Grand CanyonJane
1991Pretty Hattie's BabyHattieUnreleased
1992Passion FishChantelle
1992Gun in Betty Lou's Handbag, TheThe Gun in Betty Lou's HandbagAttorney Ann Orkin
1993Rich in LoveRhody Poole
1993Heart and SoulsPenny Washington
1993Bopha!Rosie Mangena
1994FrasierEdnaEpisode: "The Botched Language of Cranes"
1994Blue ChipsLavada McRae
1994CrooklynCarolyn Carmichael
1995How to Make an American QuiltMarianna
1995Piano Lesson, TheThe Piano LessonBerniece
1996Star Trek: First ContactLily Sloane
1996Gulliver's TravelsQueen of Brobdingnag
1996Primal FearJudge Miriam Shoat
1996Follow Me HomeEvey
1996A Step Toward TomorrowDr. Sandlin
1997Cadillac DesertNarrator
1997Miss Evers' BoysEunice Evers
1997Brave Little Toaster to the Rescue, TheThe Brave Little Toaster to the RescueMaisie the CatVoice role
1997Member of the Wedding, TheThe Member of the WeddingBerenice Sadie Brown
1998Down in the DeltaLoretta Sinclair
1998Homicide: Life on the StreetDr. Roxanne TurnerEpisode: "Mercy"
1999Funny ValentinesJoyce May
1999The Wishing TreeClara Collier
1999MumfordLily
2000What's Cooking?Audrey Williams
2000Holiday HeartWanda
2000Love & BasketballCamille Wright
2000InnovatorsHerself as Host
2000DinosaurPlioVoice role
2001K-PAXClaudia Villars
2002Searching for Debra WingerHerself
2002Wild Thornberrys Movie, TheThe Wild Thornberrys MovieAkelaVoice role
2003Singing Detective, TheThe Singing DetectiveChief of Staff
2003Core, TheThe CoreTalma Stickley
2003Practice, TheThe PracticeDenise FreemanEpisodes: "Final Judgement" and "Down the Hatch"
2003Unchained Memoriesa reader of a WPA slave narrative.
2003RadioPrincipal Daniels
2003Wrinkle in Time, AA Wrinkle in TimeMrs. Whatsit
2004Forgotten, TheThe ForgottenDetective Anne Pope
2005Beauty ShopMiss Josephine
2006Something NewJoyce McQueen
2006Take the LeadPrincipal Augustine James
2005–06Desperate HousewivesBetty Applewhite26 episodes, Season 2, series regular
2007Pictures of Hollis WoodsEdna Reilly
2008American VioletAlma Roberts
2008Family That Preys, TheThe Family That PreysAlice Pratt
2008AmericanEastAngela Jensen
2008My Own Worst EnemyMavis Heller9 episodes
2009–10Three RiversDr. Sophia Jordan12 episodes
2009Reach for MeEvelyn
2010, 2012True BloodRuby Jean Reynolds4 episodes
2010Black PantherDondi Reese, Queen Mother
2010–2011Memphis BeatLt. Tanya Rice20 episodes
2011Grey's AnatomyJustine CampbellEpisode: "Heart Shaped Box"
2012Steel MagnoliasOuiser
2012Private PracticeDee BennettEpisode: "The Next Episode"
2013CopperHattie Lemaster[12]6 episodes
2013Twelve Years a SlaveMistress Harriet Shaw

References[edit]

External links[edit]