Alfre Woodard filmography and biography
Date of birth: 8 November 1952, Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
Alfre Woodard biography
Alfre Woodard is the youngest of three children born to her parents in Oklahoma. She was named by her godmother, who claimed she saw a vision of Alfre's name in written out in gold letters. A former high school cheerleader and track star, she got the acting bug after being pursuaded to audition for a school play by a nun at her school. She went on to study acting at Boston University and enjoyed a brief stint on Broadway before moving to LA. She got her first break in Remember My Name which also starred Jeff Goldblum. She lives in Santa Monica with her husband, writer Roderick Spencer (II), and their two adopted children: Mavis and Duncan. She was named one of the Most Beautiful People in America by People Magazine.
Alfre Woodard trivia
- She was so impressed with the script of the independent film Follow Me Home that she offered to play the role of Evey without pay; much to the delight and awe of filmmaker Peter Bratt.
- Played Dr. Roxanne Turner in St. Elsewhere and years later in an episode of Homicide: Life on the Street. Tom Fontana was a writer for the first, and an executive producer for the second.
- As of September 13, 2003, she now holds the record of being the most honored African American actress in Primetime Emmy history. Until her win (as Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for The Practice), she was tied with Cicely Tyson at three Primetime Emmys apiece. She won her first Primetime Emmy in 1984 as Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for a three-episode guest stint on Hill Street Blues, as the mother of a young boy accidentally killed by a police officer. Her second Primetime Emmy came in 1986 as Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama Series (a category which has since been split into male and female equivalents) for the "Pilot" episode of L.A. Law playing a woman dying of leukemia who claims to have been a victim of gang rape. In 1997, she won her third Primetime Emmy for Miss Evers' Boys (1997) (TV) against stiff competition from the likes of Meryl Streep, Glenn Close and Stockard Channing.
- Among the Star Trek toys released for the movie Star Trek: First Contact, an action figure was made of Alfre in the likeness of her character Lili in the film.
- Has one daughter, Mavis and one son, Duncan
- She and Felicity Huffman are the only two cast members of Desperate Housewives to have Oscar nominations.
- Her old Tulsa, Oklahoma house located near the Broken Arrow Expressway is the same part of the Oklahoma Turnpike the Jackson family would take by bus to California for Jackson-Five performances.
- Attended Bishop Kelley High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
- Was member of the dramatic jury at the Sundance Film Festival in 1990 and 1998.
- For her revelatory performance in writer-director John Sayles' Passion Fish she was the Los Angeles Film Critics Association's second pick (i.e. runner-up) for their best supporting actress prize in 1992.
- Was in consideration for the part of Mia Wallace in Pulp Fiction but Uma Thurman, who went on to receive a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination for her performance, was cast instead.
- Jonathan Frakes calls her his "godmother". The two became friends as young actors in the 1970s.
- Studied acting with Michael Howard at Boston University.
- Her daughter Mavis Spencer was Miss Golden Globe 2010.
Alfre Woodard quotes
- [On her marriage] "We were both taught 'you pick your friends on how they treat you - not by what they have or what they look like.' We get twice the cultures."
- "I'm a mom and a wife. That's what I do in the world. That's my identity. Second, I'm an actor."