Taraji P. Henson is at the height of her career. At the beginning of the year, Henson became the third African American woman to win a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a television drama in the 73 year history of the award ceremony for her role as ‘Cookie’ on the Fox hit series Empire. In addition to her role on one of the most popular series on network television, Henson will be starring in the upcoming film Hidden Figures, where she will play mathematics genius Katherine Johnson, a physicist, mathematician, and space scientist who contributed to America’s aeronautics and space programs with the early application of digital electronic computers at NASA.
In Variety’s “Actors on Actors” series, Henson sat down and interviewed Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool) and they talked to each other about their careers, social media, and how badly they wanted their current roles. Henson says when she got the Hidden Figures script, “I read it and I remember thinking to myself, ‘How come I haven’t heard of these women?’ So I made it my mission to do the film. I didn’t care how much they were paying. I felt like it was an important piece of cinematography and an important piece of history that was missing that we needed to know about. I then became very grateful that I was the one chosen to be apart of it.”
Henson also touched on the fact that she auditioned for Olivia Pope in Shonda Rhimes’ ABC hit “Scandal,” a role that eventually went to Kerry Washington. “Thank God Kerry got it,” the Empire and Hidden Figures star said. “It was her job.”
“Isn’t it funny how sometimes you think, ‘Wow, someone else got it, and they ran with it, and it was perfect for them,’” Reynolds added.
Watch the entire chat between Reynolds and Henson below. The interview will air in full on Variety‘s “Actors on Actors” Season 5, presented by The Venetian Las Vegas, which debuts on PBS SoCal on Jan. 3rd.