Taraji Penda Henson is an American actress, producer, singer, and entrepreneur born on September 11, 1970. Henson’s successful career started in 1992. You may know her from her breakthrough film “Baby Boy” (2001) or in the Fox drama series “Empire.” However, with an extensive filmography, Henson has proven she’s a force to be reckoned with in Hollywood. She’s a talented actress, which is why we’re celebrating her special day today!
Taraji P. Henson was born in Southeast Washington, D.C. Henson’s mother was a manager at Woodward & Lothrop, while her father was a janitor and metal maker. She’s of African-American descent and a Virgo. Henson attended Oxon Hill School in Maryland in 1988. She enrolled in North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University to study electrical engineering but transferred to Howard University, majoring in Drama.
In 2001, after several background performances, Henson got her first big role in “Baby Boy.” Several films later, Henson played Shug in “Hustle & Flow” (2005), where she made her singing debut. Her role in this film landed her two Academy Award nominations, of which she won one. In 2008 she appeared in “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” with Brad Pitt. Henson went on to star in “The Family That Preys” (2008), “I Can Do Bad All By Myself” (2009), and the “Karate Kid” remake in 2010. She appeared in “Think Like A Man” (2012) and “Think Like a Man Too” (2014). Henson starred in the 2016 film “Hidden Figures,” which was a box-office success. She received multiple nominations and won the SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture. In 2018, Henson starred in “Proud Mary” and Tyler Perry’s “Acrimony.” Henson is stupendously talented, and she also starred in “What Men Want” (2019), amongst other films.
Her television career includes appearances on “Sister Sister” (1997), “House” (2005), the people’s favorite “Empire” (from 2015 to 2020), and many others. Henson has an enviable career within and outside Hollywood. She has her production company, TPH Entertainment, a haircare line called TPH by Taraji, and several other ventures. She’s a mogul, an entertainer, and a black woman of substance. She shares her success with her son Marcell, family, and friends. Henson’s personal life has been somewhat public. She got engaged to Kelvin Hayden but announced they split in October 2020. She is presently single.
Henson lands a role as Yvette in “Baby Boy.”
Henson makes her singing debut in the movie “Hustle and Flow.”
Henson receives an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress in “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.”
Henson appears in this film alongside other big names.
Henson receives a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series.
Why We Love Taraji P. Henson
She is super talented
Henson’s talent is exemplary. From movies to music and entrepreneurship, Henson has made a name for herself in multiple industries.
She’s an activist
Henson has contributed to diverse causes from H.I.V./AIDS to PETA, the L.G.B.T. community, etc. Aside from using her platform to advocate for these organizations, she makes financial contributions too.
She loves animals
Henson decided to support PETA. She’s also a vegan and made the diet switch in 2017.
5 Surprising Facts
She reveres Tyler Perry
Henson revealed that Perry is the only filmmaker in Hollywood that paid her what she’s worth.
Her two names are Swahili
Henson’s first and middle names mean ‘hope’ and ‘love’ in Swahili.
She worked at The Pentagon
Henson worked as a secretary at The Pentagon to pay for her college education.
Her high school sweetheart was murdered
Henson’s high school sweetheart and father of her son Marcell, William LaMarr Johnson, was murdered in 2003.
She’s on President Biden’s Board of Advisors
Biden appointed Henson to the President’s Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Taraji P. Henson FAQs
What illness does Taraji P. Henson have?
Henson suffers from a stomach illness.
Did Taraji P. Henson date Common?
Henson and Common dated from October 2005 to February 2007.
Are Taraji P. Henson’s hair products vegan?
TPH by Taraji is cruelty-free, vegan, and color-safe.
Taraji P. Henson’s birthday dates