Oprah Winfrey took time before the Golden Globes ceremony to clear the air regarding her relationship with woefully underappreciated (and underpaid) actress Taraji P. Henson, who stars in the film adaptation of the Broadway musical adaption of The Color Purple, which Winfrey is the executive producer of.
Since the Empire star kept it real about her struggles in the industry as a Black actress who has a resume that can stand up with many of her white and/or male counterparts earning much more than her, people on social media have been pointing the finger at Winfrey. They’re asking why the billionaire media mogul didn’t back Henson and other cast members when they fought for things as simple as getting a driver to take them to set. Oprah denies that she wasn’t there for the film’s cast members and said Henson would co-sign her on that.
“I heard I was trending yesterday. People were saying I was not supporting Taraji,” Winfrey said in an interview with Entertainment Tonight at the Golden Globes. “Taraji will tell you herself that I’ve been the greatest champion of this film, championing not only the behind-the-scenes production but also everything that everybody needed.”
She continued, “Whenever I heard that there was something that people needed — I’m not in charge of the budget because that’s Warner Bros., that’s the way the studio system works and we as producers, everybody gets their salary that’s negotiated by your team.”
Winfrey reiterated that whenever she “heard there was a problem with the cars” or “with the food” she would “step in and do whatever I could to make it right,” noting that Henson “would vouch for that and say that it’s true.”
“I am all for everybody being the greatest and meeting the rising of their own life,” she added.
As for the rumors that financial struggles and other behind-the-scenes issues have driven a wedge between Oprah and Taraji, the former said none of it is true.
“There’s no validity to there being a thing between Taraji and I,” Winfrey said.
Social media still had the jokes ready. See the reactions below.
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