MAKERS Profile

Alfre Woodard


In this video

Tagged as

Alfre Woodard on her childhood, racism, and finding the right stories.
Alfre Woodard is a prolific actor; she has acted in over 25 TV series and over 70 films during her long career. She grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and didn’t consider becoming an actor until one of the school nuns suggested the idea. After attending Boston University, she took to the stage in 1974 in Washington, D.C. She made appearances in a handful of films before earning an Oscar nomination for her 1983 performance as Geechee in “Cross Creek.” Soon after, she won Emmys for her roles on cop show “Hill Street Blues,” and “L.A. Law.”   In 1997, she won an Emmy, a Golden Globe, and a SAG award for playing the titular character in “Miss Evers’ Boys.” In 2006, Woodard had a starring role in Desperate Housewives. She was nominated for another Emmy for her work on HBO’s True Blood, in 2010.   Woodard took part in a pivotal scene for 2013’s Best Picture-winning “12 Years a Slave,” and now plays the President of the United States in NBC’s “State of Affairs.”

More From Alfre

In Your Underpants
Alfre Woodard gives advice on accepting life open armed.

As a Woman
How Alfre Woodard thinks of herself.  

We Stay the Course
What Alfre Woodard remembers when she’s tired of the work.

Then We'll Know
Alfre Woodard talks about the opportunities that are now available for young women, and how Lupita Nyong'o’s career launch will be a sign of progress.

Through the Wall
Pretty white girls get to go through the front door, but other women have to figure out alternative routes into the room.

When the Middle is Lifted
How will we know when Hollywood is better for black women? Alfre Woodard wonders.

Dance Around That Formula
Alfre Woodard on the difference between the emotional leaders of the past and the corporate producers of the present.

Love It or Forget About It
Alfre Woodard talks about the body image pressure women face in Hollywood.

It Had to Roll
Alfre Woodard talks about the scene she filmed with Steve McQueen in "12 Years a Slave."

How to Walk with Them
Alfre Woodard’s thoughts on parenthood, and the importance of allowing people to develop on their own.

People Like Him
Alfre Woodard on realizing her dream of working with Robert Altman.  

She Was a Tornado
Alfre Woodard talks about her appreciation for Ntozake Shange, who wrote For Colored Girls.