Known For: Acting · Birthday: 1952-11-08 (67 years old)
81 Movies · 18 TV Series
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Alfre Woodard (; born November 8, 1952) is an American actor, producer, and political activist. She has been named one of the most versatile and accomplished actors of her generation. She has been nominated once each for an Academy Award and Grammy Award and 18 times for an Emmy Award (winning four) and has also won a Golden Globe Award and three Screen Actors Guild Awards. Woodard began her acting career in theater. After her breakthrough role in the Off-Broadway play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf (1977), she made her film debut in Remember My Name (1978). In 1983, she won major critical praise and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Cross Creek. In the same year, Woodard won her first Primetime Emmy Award for her performance in the NBC drama series Hill Street Blues. Later in the 1980s, Woodard had leading Emmy Award–nominated performances in a number of made for television movies, and another Emmy-winning role as a woman dying of leukemia in the pilot episode of L.A. Law. She also starred as Dr. Roxanne Turner in the NBC medical drama St. Elsewhere, for which she was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 1986, and for Guest Actress in 1988. In the 1990s, Woodard starred in films such as Grand Canyon (1991), Heart and Souls (1993), Crooklyn (1994), How to Make an American Quilt (1995), Primal Fear (1996) and Star Trek: First Contact (1996). She also drew critical praise for her performances in the independent dramas Passion Fish (1992), for which she won an Independent Spirit Award and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress, as well as Down in the Delta (1998). For her lead role in the HBO film Miss Evers' Boys (1997), Woodard won Golden Globe, Emmy, Screen Actors Guild, and several other awards. In later years, she has appeared in several blockbusters, like K-PAX (2001), The Core (2003), and The Forgotten (2004), starred in independent films, and won her fourth Emmy Award for The Practice in 2003. From 2005 to 2006, Woodard starred as Betty Applewhite in the ABC comedy-drama series Desperate Housewives, and later starred in several short-lived series. She appeared in the films The Family That Preys (2008), 12 Years a Slave (2013), Annabelle (2014), and Juanita (2019), and has also worked as a political activist and producer. In 2019, she received critical acclaim for her performance in the drama film Clemency. Woodard is a founder of Artists for a New South Africa, an organization devoted to advancing democracy and equality in that country. She is a board member of AMPAS.
Woodard lives in Santa Monica, California, with her husband, writer Roderick Spencer, and their two children Mavis and Duncan. Woodard follows Christian Science. Her daughter, Mavis, served as Miss Golden Globe for the 2010 Golden Globe Awards.Woodard is an activist for a wide spectrum of causes. She is a founder and board member of Artists for a New South Africa, a nonprofit organization dedicated to combating the African AIDS pandemic and to advancing democracy and equality in South Africa since 1989. The charity has raised more than $9 million and has provided healthcare to over 3,500 South African AIDS orphans. Woodard is also a board member of the Democratic Party, and campaigned for Barack Obama in the both the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections. She lends continuing support to the fight for LGBT rights and same sex marriage. 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.On August 9, 2015, Woodard appeared on TLC's Who Do You Think You Are?. Research into her father's genealogy revealed that her great-grandfather Alex Woodard was born into slavery in Houston County, Georgia, in the early 1840s. At about age 14 or 15, Alex was separated from his family when his master relocated to Jackson Parish, Louisiana. Historians helped Woodard locate evidence that Alex was assessed a poll tax in 1867, indicating that he was registered to vote two years after the Civil War ended. By 1881, Alex had purchased 80 acres of farmland in Jackson Parish. On April 15, 1898, Alex Woodard and his wife Elizabeth sold their 80 acres to her brother, Aaron Stell, as they had moved to Wharton County, Texas, by that time. In tribute to Alex Woodard's climb from enslavement to landowner, Alfre poured a libation of water on the land that her great-grandfather and his family acquired by dint of hard work and unwavering determination. The scene closed the program.
Woodard was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma to Constance, a homemaker, and Marion H. Woodard, an entrepreneur and interior designer. She is the youngest of three children. Woodard attended Bishop Kelley High School, a private Catholic school in Tulsa, graduating from there in 1970. She studied drama at Boston University, from which she graduated.
Movies & TV Series
5 Movies · 1 TV Series
No Small Matter
A look at the issue of high-quality early care and education in America, from home to childcare to preschool; the tragic cost of getting it wrong; and the huge payoff - for our kids, our families and ...
Years of carrying out death row executions have taken a toll on prison warden Bernadine Williams. As she prepares to execute another inmate, Bernadine must confront the psychological and emotional dem...
A virus has decimated humankind. Those who survived emerged blind. Centuries later when twins are born with the mythic ability to see, their father must protect his tribe against a threatened queen.
Fed up with her deadbeat grown kids and marginal urban existence, Juanita takes a Greyhound bus to Paper Moon, Montana - where she reinvents herself and finds her mojo.
The true story of immigration attorney Judy Wood and how she singlehandedly changed the U.S. law of asylum to save women's lives.
The Lion King
Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny. But not everyone in the kingdom celebrates the new cub's arrival. Scar, Mufasa's brother—and former heir to the throne...
1 Movie · 1 TV Series
A Series of Unfortunate Events
The orphaned Baudelaire children face trials, tribulations and the evil Count Olaf, all in their quest to uncover the secret of their parents' death.
Deep into Hell Week, a favored pledgee is torn between honoring his code of silence or standing up against the intensifying violence of underground hazing.
3 Movies · 1 TV Series
So B. It
A young girl named Heidi who lives with her mentally disabled mother, travels across the country to find out about her and her mothers past.
Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise
A celebration of Dr. Maya Angelou by weaving her words with rare and intimate archival photographs and videos, which paint hidden moments of her exuberant life during some of America’s most defining c...
Marvel's Luke Cage
Given superstrength and durability by a sabotaged experiment, a wrongly accused man escapes prison to become a superhero for hire.
Captain America: Civil War
Following the events of Age of Ultron, the collective governments of the world pass an act designed to regulate all superhuman activity. This polarizes opinion amongst the Avengers, causing two factio...
3 Movies · 1 TV Series
A Path Appears
The film follows intrepid reporters Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn and actor/advocates Malin Akerman, Mia Farrow, Ronan Farrow, Jennifer Garner, Regina Hall, Ashley Judd, Blake Lively, Eva Longori...
A powerful family drama about the head of a music empire whose three sons and ex-wife all battle for his throne.
When his brother disappears, mentally disabled Langston Bellows (Gbenga Akinnagbe) is left without a protector in Brooklyn's housing projects. Now under the control of his abusive mother (Alfre Woodar...
Gerry is a talented but down-on-his-luck gambler whose fortunes begin to change when he meets Curtis, a younger, highly charismatic poker player. The two strike up an immediate friendship and Gerry q...
1 Movie · 2 TV Series
The Last Ship
Their mission is simple: Find a cure. Stop the virus. Save the world. When a global pandemic wipes out eighty percent of the planet's population, the crew of a lone naval destroyer must find a way to ...
John Form has found the perfect gift for his expectant wife, Mia - a beautiful, rare vintage doll in a pure white wedding dress. But Mia's delight with Annabelle doesn't last long. On one horrific nig...
State of Affairs
Each day the President is faced with dozens of life and death decisions, and to prioritize the biggest international crises facing the country, one top CIA analyst - Charleston Tucker - assembles the ...
The Door, by Ava DuVernay, is a celebration of the transformative power of feminine bonds, and a symbolic story of life change.
12 Years a Slave
In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty as well as unexpected kindnesses Solomon struggles not on...
2 TV Series
Deep in the heart of Africa lies Wakanda, an advanced and unconquerable civilization. A family of warrior kings possessing superior speed, strength and agility has governed this mysterious nation as l...
Memphis Beat is an American drama series that debuted on TNT on June 22, 2010 and ended on August 16, 2011. Memphis Beat was officially canceled on October 14, 2011.
1 TV Series
4 Movies · 2 TV Series
True Blood is an American television drama series created and produced by Alan Ball. It is based on The Southern Vampire Mysteries series of novels by Charlaine Harris, detailing the co-existence of v...
Medal of Honor
The story of the Medal of Honor - the highest U.S. award for valor in combat - is told through personal accounts of bravery and daring
Reach for Me
Old and bitter, Alvin just wants some peace and quiet in his last days. His wish, however, is not granted when a young, vibrant and ironically full of life Kevin becomes Alvin's hospice roommate. Thro...
The Family That Preys
Alice Pratt, a hard working Christian woman, raised her two daughters while managing a simple diner of her own. Her snobbish and arrogant daughter Andrea graduated in Economic Science and works in a c...
A young single mother of four living in a small Texas town. Arrested during a drug raid and accused of a crime she didn't commit, Dee goes against the wishes of her mother, Alma, and rejects the plea-...
My Own Worst Enemy
My Own Worst Enemy is an American television drama that aired on NBC in 2008. It premiered on October 13 and ended on December 15 after 9 episodes. The series was produced by Universal Media Studios. ...
King Leopold's Ghost
Based on Adam Hochschild's critically acclaimed international bestseller King Leopold’s Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa, the documentary centers on the atrocities that ...
The Water Is Wide
Pat Conroy, an ambitious, slightly rebellious idealistic teacher accepts Bennington county, SC's school board superintendent's offer to teach the all-black kids of the pauper fishery community on Yama...
Take the Lead
A former professional dancer volunteers to teach dance in the New York public school system and, while his background first clashes with his students' tastes, together they create a completely new sty...
Geophysicist Dr. Josh Keyes discovers that an unknown force has caused the earth's inner core to stop rotating. With the planet's magnetic field rapidly deteriorating, our atmosphere literally starts ...
A Wrinkle in Time
Based on a children's series by the same name. Meg and Charles Wallace are aided by Calvin and three interesting women in the search for their father who disappeared during a government experiment. Th...
Nat Turner: A Troublesome Property
In 1831, Nat Turner led a slave rebellion in the United States that resulted in the murder of local slave owners and their families, the eventual execution of 55 rebels and the retribution lynching of...
The Singing Detective
From his hospital bed, a writer suffering from a skin disease hallucinates musical numbers and paranoid plots.
High school football coach, Harold Jones befriends Radio, a mentally-challenged man who becomes a student at T.L. Hanna High School in Anderson, South Carolina. Their friendship extends over several d...
8 Movies · 1 TV Series
The Tulsa Lynching of 1921: A Hidden Story
Documents the race riot of 1921 and the destruction of the African-American community of Greenwood in Tulsa, Oklahoma. With testimony by eyewitnesses and background accounts by historians.
In LA's Fairfax district, where ethnic groups abound, four households celebrate Thanksgiving amidst family tensions. In the Nguyen family, the children's acculturation and immigrant parents' fears col...
A drag queen takes in a drug addict and her daughter and helps raise the daughter.
The adventures of a teenage superhero who fights crime in Dakota City.
A larger-than-life tale about the African-American hero born with a hammer in his hand. Join John Henry on a scenic journey from cotton country to the wilderness, where he finds men of all colors work...
A small group of Catholics led by an ailing priest believe that Satan intends to become man, just as God did in the person of Jesus. The writings of a possessed mental patient lead them to Peter Kelso...
An orphaned dinosaur raised by lemurs joins an arduous trek to a sancturary after a meteorite shower destroys his family home.
Love & Basketball
A young African-American couple navigates the tricky paths of romance and athletics in this drama. Quincy McCall and Monica Wright grew up in the same neighborhood and have known each other since chil...
American Experience: Eleanor Roosevelt
Eleanor Roosevelt struggled to overcome an unhappy childhood, betrayal in her marriage, a controlling mother-in-law, and gripping depressions — all the while staying true to her passion for social jus...
The Wishing Tree
When her storyteller mother (Mary Alice) dies, attorney Clara Collier (Alfre Woodard) returns to her Georgia hometown and is soon captivated by a local legend of the "Magic Man" (Blair Underwood). Whi...
In the small town of Mumford, a psychologist of the same name moves in and quickly becomes very popular, despite a questionable past.
A woman returns to her home town to sort out her troubled marriage and finds new happiness in the rekindling of a broken friendship with her cousin.
3 Movies · 1 TV Series
A provocative legal drama focused on young associates at a bare-bones Boston firm and their scrappy boss, Bobby Donnell. The show's forte is its storylines about “people who walk a moral tightrope.”
The Member of the Wedding
In the last days leading up to her older brother's marriage, a young girl is forced to face realities and grow up quickly. A tender adaptation of Carson McCullers' classic play.
Miss Evers' Boys
The true story of the US Government's 1932 Tuskeegee Syphilis Experiments, in which a group of black test subjects were allowed to die, despite a cure having been developed.
A Step toward Tomorrow
A divorcee moves her family cross-country to take her paralyzed son to a pioneer neurosurgeon.
3 Movies · 1 TV Series
An arrogant, high-powered attorney takes on the case of a poor altar boy found running away from the scene of the grisly murder of the bishop who has taken him in. The case gets a lot more complex whe...
Star Trek: First Contact
The Borg, a relentless race of cyborgs, are on a direct course for Earth. Violating orders to stay away from the battle, Captain Picard and the crew of the newly-commissioned USS Enterprise E pursue t...
Special Report: Journey to Mars
When the world's first spaceship is close to its goal (Mars), the TV-network GNN begins its live coverage of the last two hours of the mission and then the problems start. The landing-computer malfunc...
Dr. Gulliver has returned from his journey to his family after a long absence - and tells them the story of his travels.
The Piano Lesson
1930's Pittsburgh, a brother comes home to claim "my half of the piano", a family heirloom; but his sister is not wanting to part with it. This is a glimpse of the conditions for African-Americans as ...
How to Make an American Quilt
Soon-to-be-wed graduate student Finn Dodd develops cold feet when she suspects her fiancé is cheating on her. In order to clear her head, Finn visits her grandmother, Hy, and great aunt, Glady Joe Cle...
Malcolm X: Make It Plain
Narrated by actress Alfre Woodard, this trenchant, eye-opening doc traces the radical civil rights leader’s life from his tumultuous childhood, through his rise in the ranks of the Nation of Islam, to...
Pete Bell, a college basketball coach is under a lot of pressure. His team isn't winning and he cannot attract new players. The stars of the future are secretly being paid by boosters. This practice i...
From Spike Lee comes this vibrant semi-autobiographical portrait of a school-teacher, her stubborn jazz-musician husband and their five kids living in '70s Brooklyn.
1 Movie · 2 TV Series
Homicide: Life on the Street
Homicide: Life on the Street is an American police procedural television series chronicling the work of a fictional version of the Baltimore Police Department's Homicide Unit. It ran for seven seasons...
After many years spent at the “Cheers” bar, Frasier moves back home to Seattle to work as a radio psychiatrist after his policeman father gets shot in the hip on duty.
Heart and Souls
A businessman is reunited with the four lost souls who were his guardian angels during childhood, all with a particular purpose to joining the afterlife.
Rich in Love
Warren Odom, a rich Southern gentleman, is left in a state of shock when his wife, Helen, leaves him unexpectedly. With Helen gone, Warren's kindhearted teenage daughter, Lucille, cares for him and tr...
The Gun in Betty Lou's Handbag
Betty Lou is a librarian in a very small town. Her husband is a police detective who takes her for granted. Betty Lou is the ultimate mouse. After a gangland figure is mysteriously murdered in town, B...
After an accident leaves her a paraplegic, a former soap opera star struggles to recover both emotionally and mentally, until she meets her newest nurse, who has struggles of her own.
A Mother's Courage: The Mary Thomas Story
The story of Mary Thomas, the mother of basketball star Isiah Thomas, and how she fought to keep her family together and her sons out of trouble despite the surroundings of poverty, drugs, crime and v...
A girl from Yazoo City, Mississippi pins all her hopes on winning the local beauty pageant.
2 Movies · 1 TV Series
The Child Saver
Andrea Crawford, an important business woman, risks everything to save a kid from the life of crime.
TV's most-watched history series brings to life the compelling stories from our past that inform our understanding of the world today.
In this modern take on Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol," Frank Cross (Bill Murray) is a wildly successful television executive whose cold ambition and curmudgeonly nature has driven away the love ...
Frank Coleman is a Vietnam veteran dying from cancer brought on by exposure to the defoliant chemical Agent Orange which he turns to Maude DeVictor, a Veterans Administration benefits counselor who te...
A woman escapes from the man who is about to rape her, but leaves her purse behind. Afraid that her attacker might come after her, she goes to the police, but with no proof of the incident, they can d...
Words by Heart
The only black family living in a small midwestern town at the turn of the century confront prejudice, as seen through the eyes of the young daughter.
Puss in Boots
A young man (Gregory Hines) journeys from rags-to-riches thanks to his talented Puss in Boots (Ben Vereen). Starring Ben Vereen, Gregory Hines, Alfre Woodard, George Kirby, and Brock Peters. Narrated ...
The Killing Floor
During World War I, a poor black Southerner travels north to Chicago to get work in the city's slaughterhouses, where he becomes embroiled in the organized labor movement.
Go Tell It On The Mountain
This film adaptation of James Baldwin's celebrated novel tells the journey of a family from the rural South to "big city" Harlem seeking both salvation and understanding and of a young boy struggling ...
2 Movies · 1 TV Series
Faerie Tale Theatre
A live-action children's television anthology series retelling popular fairy tales.
The Ambush Murders
An African-American political activist is wrongfully imprisoned for killing two white policemen; he is unwary of yet another white lawyer who claims that he will help free him.
For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow Is Enuf
The powerful tales of seven diverse African-American women are woven together in this 1982 performance of Ntozake Shange's Obie Award-winning landmark play. A breakthrough portrayal of black women's e...
The Trial of the Moke
Henry Flipper is the first black West Point graduate. Assigned to serve at Fort Davis in Texas, Flipper becomes the object of a conspiracy by his fellow cadets to rid the base of its only black gradua...
Remember My Name
Just released from prison, a young woman arrives in town to "start a new life", but soon begins stalking a married construction worker for no apparent reason, turning his life inside out and eventuall...