In Taraji P. Henson's February 2017 Guideposts cover story, she shares how her father helped her become fearless.
Here's Taraji at our Guideposts' photo shoot. The leading lady sits in the director's chair, ready for action.
“My prayer always: Use me God to inspire others through the gift you gave me,” Taraji says.
Here's a shot of Taraji in character as Katherine Johnson. To prepare for the role Taraji told us that she visited the real Katherine Johnson who is 98 years old. “Her brain is beautiful. She’s a genius! It was amazing to meet someone so passionate about math and numbers.” Check out our review of the inspiring film Hidden Figures.
Taraji, shown at age two, was born in southeast Washington, D.C. By the looks of this photo Taraji says was “destined to be on TV.”
Taraji with her mom, Bernice. “Mom worked long days at a department store. I can still see her hunched over a stack of bills at the kitchen table, rubbing her temples. All this drive, all this passion, all this get to it and get it done all up in my bones, I get it from my mama. She set up the goalposts and showed me in word and in deed that no matter what lies in the road ahead of me, fear is utterly useless.”
Taraji posing for a selfie with her dad. “Daddy was a Vietnam vet and like so many Vietnam vets his psychological war wounds went untreated. He battled his demons. He always stayed in my life no matter what he was going through and I always knew how much he loved me. He eventually got his life together. I couldn’t have been more proud of him. He was my biggest cheerleader. 'Fear is a liar,’ he’d tell me. 'Make a point of calling its bluff,’” Taraji says.
Taraji with her “close, loving, and caring family” — her mom, maternal grandparents and son, Marcell, at Christmas several years ago. (Family photos of Taraji are from her book, Around the Way Girl, published by Simon & Schuster.)
Taraji P. Henson as Katherine Johnson meeting astronaut John Glenn, for whom she would calculate the flight plan that would launch him into space and return him safely to earth to help America win the Space Race against Russia. "I made it my mission to play this role,” Taraji says.