Taraji P. Henson walks into the room like she owns it, and everyone in it takes notice. The excited whispers start immediately and Henson, takes a moment to soak it in, and breaks into a huge smile. She is the belle of the ball, or better yet, the diva of the dance. The Oscar nominated actress, for Best-Supporting actress for 2008’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button has found one of her most fantastic roles to date as Cookie Lyon, the brash, powerful and animal-print loving ex-wife of Empire Entertainment CEO, Luscious Lyon on FOX’s breakout smash, Empire. This isn’t Henson’s first time working with co-star Terrence Howard or on a project that portrays the hip-hop industry, they both starred in 2005’s hip-hop drama, Hustle and Flow. As the breakout star of TV’s freshest show, Henson was pure charisma while she answered our 5 Questions.
1. If you were at a magazine rack and could pick any three titles, what would they be?
Could I be on the cover? I only do covers… W, Vogue and I wouldn’t mind Elle.
2.If your TV only has three shows or networks, what would you watch?
Empire, black-ish and How To Get Away With Murder.
3. What has been your strangest fan encounter?
It was early on in my career and a person came up to me and said, “Oh my God, I love you” and started listing movies I’d never been in. And I said, “Wow, that’s amazing, I wish I had that resume.” and then they looked at me and said, “Oh my God, I’m so sorry!” I don’t think I’ll have that problem anymore!
4. What was a time when you were starstruck?
When I met Carol Burnett I was shaking; my publicist was there and she couldn’t believe it. I’ve met a lot of people, but when I met Prince, I held his hand a little too long and he had to pass me off.
5. What three things do you have to have in your fridge or pantry?
I need creamer for my coffee and it has to be flavored — any flavor — I just love flavor. I must have hummus; I always have hummus. And my cupboard must have vanilla almond milk.
©2014 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Michael Lavine/FOX