In the mag, Taraji opens up about the power of Cookie and Empire, her struggle as a single mother in Hollywood and how some counted her out when she got pregnant in college, along with the records and the boundaries the show is breaking in Hollywood.
On her Emmy nomination:
[Before the nominations] everybody kept saying to me, “Have you cleaned your mantel off?” I said, “Everybody chill.” I knew the day was coming, but I didn’t watch the nominations. I was getting ready to go to work. The phone rang, and it was my manager. I was like, “OK, he’s clearly not calling with bad news.
Why people connect with her character Cookie on Empire so much:
She is everybody’s alter ego. She crosses cultures. [Last year] we went to Paris and screened the pilot for a thousand people. Lee Daniels [the series’ co creator] brought me onstage. The audience stood up on their feet and clapped. I cried because, for so long in Hollywood, I’ve been told that black women don’t do well overseas, that they can’t open a film overseas. That moment for me was the best moment of my life. That’s better than any trophy, any award, any nomination. You know how they say music can heal the world? I feel that way about art in general.
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