By Life Stories
Funny lady Tiffany Haddish is one of Hollywood’s biggest breakout stars. Today marks the premiere of her brand new show The Last O.G. where she plays funny beside her idol, Tracy Morgan.
Growing up in foster care, Tiffany led a traumatizing childhood and was faced with one life-changing decision: go to therapy or enrol in comedy camp. She chose the latter and went on to become the funniest woman of the year. This is her story.
Tiffany Sarac Haddish (born December 3, 1979) is an American actress, comedian, and author. After guest starring on several television series, Haddish gained prominence as Jackie on the first season of the OWN television drama If Loving You Is Wrong from 2014 to 2015. From 2015 to 2017, she starred as Nekeisha Williams on the NBC sitcom The Carmichael Show. After appearing in the 2016 comedy film Keanu, Haddish made her film breakthrough as Dina in the 2017 film Girls Trip, for which she received critical acclaim for her performance. In 2017, she published her memoir, The Last Black Unicorn.
- 1Early life and education
- 3Personal life
- 5Awards and nominations
- 6Works and publications
- 8External links
Early life and education
Haddish was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. Her father, Tsihaye Reda Haddish, was a refugee from Eritrea, and was from an Ethiopian Jewish family. Her mother, Leola, was an African-American small business owner and a Jehovah’s Witness. After Haddish’s father left when she was three years old, her mother remarried and went on to have more children; Haddish has two half-sisters and two half-brothers.
In 1988 while living in Colton, California, Haddish’s stepfather tampered with the brakes on her mother’s car, leading to an accident in which Leola suffered severe brain damage. The tampering was allegedly intended to harm Haddish and her siblings as well, but they had opted to stay home on the day of the accident. Her stepfather disclosed this to her while having dinner. The brain damage possibly triggered Leola’s schizophrenia. Haddish, then age nine and the oldest of her five siblings, became the primary caregiver for her family.
At 12, Haddish and her siblings were put into foster care where they were temporarily separated from each other. While there, she used comedy as a way to cope with being in situations with new people. When she was 15, she and her siblings were reunited under the care of their grandmother.
She attended George Ellery Hale Middle School in Woodland Hills and graduated from El Camino Real High School, also in Woodland Hills, where she was the school mascot.Haddish said she could not read very well until high school, but improved when she received tutoring from a teacher. She also got in a lot of trouble at school, despite her award-winning participation in drama competition featuring Shakespearean monologues. In 1997, after her social worker gave her an ultimatum to either attend psychiatric therapy or go to the Laugh Factory Comedy Camp, then 17-year-old Haddish opted for comedy as outlet for her pain. She has said that the mentorship from many notable comedians—including Richard Pryor, Dane Cook, Charles Fleischer, the Wayans brothers—helped her discover her passion for comedy and it “literally saved her life.” She has said that she incorporates her past real life experiences in her sets, finding that doing so functions as a sort of “safe space” for her.
Haddish stated in 2018 that at the age of seventeen she was sexually assaulted by a police cadet. She has stated that this led to her having an aggressive front when it comes to avoiding unwanted advances from men.
Before her on-screen success, Haddish held a number of jobs, including customer service for Alaska Airlines. Haddish has said she lived in her car during her 20s while in her early days of comedy.
Haddish’s first break was a spot on the comedy competition Bill Bellamy’s Who’s Got Jokes? She has made guest appearances on such shows as Chelsea Lately, That’s So Raven, My Name Is Earl, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Underground, Nick Cannon’s Short Circuitz, @midnight, Just Jordan, In the Motherhood, Def Comedy Jam, Reality Bites Back and New Girl. She has also starred in movies such as Meet the Spartans and Janky Promoters.
In 2013, she had a recurring role on Real Husbands of Hollywood. In 2014, Haddish was cast in the Oprah Winfrey Network series If Loving You Is Wrong. She left the soap after the first season for a regular role on the NBC sitcom The Carmichael Show where she starred as Nekeisha, the semi-estranged wife of Bobby Carmichael (Lil Rel Howery), for three seasons.
In 2016, she co-starred opposite Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key in the comedy film Keanu in the role of Hi C.
In 2017, Haddish starred alongside Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Regina Hall in the comedy film Girls Trip for Universal Pictures. The film received widely positive reviews, with an approval rating of 90% on Rotten Tomatoes and a “generally favorable reviews” score of 71/100 from Metacritic; it also became a box-office hit, becoming the highest-grossing comedy of 2017. Her performance was cited by many critics as a Bridesmaids Melissa McCarthy–style breakout. In the Chicago Tribune, Katie Walsh wrote, “this is Haddish’s movie, and will make her a star. It’s clear from the moment she hits the screen.”
In August 2017, Haddish’s comedy special, Tiffany Haddish: She Ready! From the Hood to Hollywood, premiered on Showtime. Reviewing the special for Vox, Caroline Framke wrote, “Tiffany Haddish is just really damn funny, and deserves a recommendation wherever we can give it to her…Haddish unleashes hilarious, filthy, and even moving anecdotes to tell the story of her life to this point, without anything holding her back, at long last.” She also co-hosted the BET game show Face Value with Deon Cole.
On November 11, 2017, Haddish became the first black female stand-up comedian to host Saturday Night Live. Haddish’s memoir, The Last Black Unicorn, was released in December 2017 by Simon & Schuster; it debuted at number 15 on The New York Times best-seller list. It was ghostwritten with Tucker Max.
As of 2018, Haddish stars opposite Tracy Morgan in the TBS sitcom, The Last O.G., her first lead in a sitcom. Her 2018 film roles include a supporting part in Uncle Drew, and a lead role, opposite Kevin Hart, in the comedy Night School, reuniting with Girls Trip director Malcolm D. Lee.
In 2018, Haddish signed a first-look deal with HBO. In addition, Haddish will voice one of the main characters of the Netflix animated comedy series Tuca & Bertie,, provides the voice of Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi in The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, and is set to lead the comedy Limited Partners for Paramount Pictures.
As described in her memoir, Haddish married and divorced William Stewart twice. Her ex-husband helped Haddish locate her once-estranged father who walked her down the aisle at their first wedding, which she once described as “one of the happiest days of my life.” She filed for divorce in Los Angeles County, California, in 2011 and 2013.
Haddish volunteers at the Laugh Factory Comedy Camp and for homeless and other charities that help people. For a period, after she graduated from high school, Haddish was homeless, living in her car. When she was nine years old, her mother was diagnosed with mental illness after a car accident and Haddish had to go into foster care. When she moved from home to home, she kept her belongings in a trash bag, which made her feel worthless. That is why she partnered with Living Advantage, a nonprofit organization that focuses on the welfare of foster youth, for her Suitcase Drive for Foster Youth, where she collected suitcases in which foster youth can keep their belongings. She also had a brief experience in Scientology. At one point early in life, she was hospitalized with toxic shock syndrome.
|2005||Pimp My Ride||Herself||Episode: “Rashae’s Ford Taurus”|
|That’s So Raven||Charlotte||Episode: “When in Dome”|
|2006||Bill Bellamy’s Who’s Got Jokes?||Herself (contestant)||Episode: “Warm It Up in LA”|
|My Name Is Earl||Robin||Episode: “The Bounty Hunter”|
|It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia||Stripper #3||Episode: “Charlie Gets Crippled”|
|The Underground||Various||1 episode|
|2007||Nick Cannon Presents: Short Circuitz||1 episode|
|Just Jordan||Diamond||Episode: “Krumpshakers”|
|2008||Racing for Time||Denise||Television film|
|2009||In the Motherhood||Teddy||Episode: “It Takes a Village Idiot”|
|Secret Girlfriend||Jessica’s Co-Worker||Episode: “You and Your Ex Call It Quits”|
|2012||The Game||Friend||Episode: The Black People Episode|
|2013–2014||Real Husbands of Hollywood||Tiffany||7 episodes|
|2014–2015||If Loving You Is Wrong||Jackie||14 episodes|
|2014||New Girl||Leslie||Episode: “Exes”|
|TripTank||Delsyia (voice)||3 episodes|
|2015–2017||The Carmichael Show||Nekeisha||25 episodes|
|2016–2017||Legends of Chamberlain Heights||Cindy (voice)||18 episodes|
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Character Voice-Over Performance
|2017||Tiffany Haddish: She Ready! From the Hood to Hollywood||Herself||Stand-up special|
|Face Value||Herself (co-host)||12 episodes|
|Saturday Night Live||Herself (host)||Episode: “Tiffany Haddish/Taylor Swift”|
Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series
|2018||Drunk History||Herself||Episode: “Heroines”|
|2018–present||The Last O.G.||Shay||Main cast|
|2018||Sesame Street||Dr. Birdwhistle||Episode: “When You’re a Vet”|
|2019||Kevin Hart’s Guide to Black History||Mae Jemison (adult)||Netflix special|
|TBA||Tuca & Bertie||Tuca (voice)||Also executive producer|
|2018||“Nice for What“||Drake|
|“What’s Going On“||Todrick Hall|
|“Girls Like You” (Original, Volume 2 and Vertical Video versions)||Maroon 5 featuring Cardi B||Herself|||
|2009||Terminator Salvation||Resistance Soldier|
Awards and nominations
The BET Awards were established in 2001 by the Black Entertainment Television network to celebrate African Americans and other minorities in music, acting, sports, and other fields of entertainment over the past year.
|2018||Girls Trip||Best Actress||Won|||
Black Reel Awards
The Black Reel Awards is an annual American awards ceremony hosted by the Foundation for the Augmentation of African-Americans in Film (FAAAF) to recognize excellence in African-American, as well as those of African diaspora’s cinematic achievements in the around the world film industry as assessed by the Academy’s voting membership.
|2018||Girls Trip||Best Supporting Actress||Won|||
|Outstanding Breakthrough Performance (Female)||Won|
A Grammy Award is an award presented by The Recording Academy to recognize achievements in the music industry.
|2019||The Last Black Unicorn||Best Spoken Word Album (Includes Poetry, Audio Books & Storytelling)||Nominated|||
Primetime Emmy Awards
A Primetime Emmy Award is an American award bestowed by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences in recognition of excellence in American primetime television programming.
|2018||Saturday Night Live||Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series||Won|||
Works and publications
- Haddish, Tiffany (December 2017). The Last Black Unicorn. New York: Gallery Books. ISBN 978-1-501-18182-5. OCLC 983640770.
- ^ “Tiffany Sack Haddish”. California Birth Index. December 3, 1979 – via FamilySearch.
- ^ Jump up to:a b Desta, Yohana (July 21, 2017). “Girls Trip Star Tiffany Haddish Is the Funniest Person Alive Right Now”. Vanity Fair.
- ^ Kwateng-Clark, Danielle (June 2, 2017). “The Cast of ‘Girls Trip’ Take Us on an Adventure in ESSENCE’s July 2017 Issue”. Essence.
- ^ “6 Most Shocking Details From Tiffany Haddish’s Memoir”. E! Online. 2017-12-05. Retrieved 2018-11-10.
- ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f g h Brennan, Neal; Kasher, Moshe; Haddish, Tiffany (2015-01-07). “Tiffany Haddish” (Audio podcast). The Champs.
- ^ Jump up to:a b c d e DJ Envy; Yee, Angela; Charlamagne Tha God; Haddish, Tiffany (2017-06-19). “Tiffany Haddish Speaks On Girls Trip, Escaping Death, Raising Her Siblings & More”(Video interview). The Breakfast Club. WWPR-FM.
- ^ Kwateng-Clark, Danielle (2017-07-21). “5 Things To Know And Love About ‘Girls Trip’ Star Tiffany Haddish”. Essence.
- ^ Seabaugh, Julie (2016). “Best Breakout Comedian: Tiffany Haddish – Best of L.A. 2016”. LA Weekly.
- ^ Jump up to:a b Irrera, Dom; Haddish, Tiffany (2012-11-17). “Dom Irrera Live from The Laugh Factory with Tiffany Haddish” (Video interview (comedy podcast)). Dom Irrera Live from The Laugh Factory.
- ^ Faris, Anna; Sarna, Sim; Haddish, Tiffany (2016-05-09). “Episode #22 Tiffany Haddish!”(Podcast – audio). Anna Faris Is Unqualified.
- ^ Jump up to:a b Jeffries, Michael P. “The Remarkable Rise of Tiffany Haddish”. The Atlantic. Retrieved 2017-12-13.
- ^ 1979-, Haddish, Tiffany,. The last black unicorn (First Gallery Books hardcover ed.). New York. ISBN 9781501181825. OCLC 983269684.
- ^ Gomez, Patric (2016-04-22). “The Carmichael Show’s Tiffany Haddish: From Foster Care Kid to Sitcom Star”. People.
- ^ Haddish, Tiffany (December 2012). “Dreams Come True Through Laughter”. Origin Magazine (10). p. 57.
- ^ Jump up to:a b Miller, Liz Shannon (2017-07-19). “Tiffany Haddish: Why The ‘Girls Trip’ Star Is This Year’s Comedy Wonder Woman”. IndieWire. Retrieved 2017-12-13.
- ^ “Tiffany Haddish opens up about being raped at 17: ‘I ended up going to counseling'”. amp.usatoday.com.
- ^ “Tiffany Haddish reveals she was raped at 17 by a police cadet”. 31 July 2018.
- ^ Desta, Yohana. “Girls Trip Star Tiffany Haddish Is the Funniest Person Alive Right Now”. HWD. Retrieved 2017-12-13.
- ^ Jump up to:a b Anderson, Tre’vell (1 April 2016). “‘Dirty’ comedian Tiffany Haddish searches for meaning on ‘The Carmichael Show'”. Los Angeles Times.
- ^ Hyman, Devon (20 January 2014). “Actress Tiffany Haddish – Beautiful, Talented, Funny & Smart”. Parlé Magazine.
- ^ Dalton, Deron (9 September 2014). “OWN Drama ‘If Loving You is Wrong’ Explores Women’s Desire to ‘Swirl'”. Lee Bailey’s EURweb.
- ^ Chang, Justin (13 March 2016). “Film Review: ‘Keanu'”. Variety.
- ^ Ford, Rebecca (24 June 2016). “‘Keanu’ Actress Joins Universal’s Comedy ‘Girl Trip’ (Exclusive)”. The Hollywood Reporter.
- ^ “Girls Trip (2017)”. Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved January 25, 2018.
- ^ “Girls Trip reviews”. Metacritic. Retrieved January 25, 2018.
- ^ “Girls Trip (2017) – Box Office Mojo”. http://www.boxofficemojo.com. Retrieved July 31, 2017.
- ^ Galuppo, Mia (July 28, 2017). “‘Girls Trip’ Breakout Tiffany Haddish Dishes on Her Big Week”. The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
- ^ Debruge, Peter (2017-07-12). “Film Review: ‘Girls Trip'”. Variety. Retrieved 2018-01-26.
- ^ Walsh, Katie (July 19, 2017). “‘Girls Trip’ review: Raunchy but heartfelt female empowerment”. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2018-01-26.
- ^ Anderson, Tre’vell (20 July 2017). “With ‘Girls Trip’ and a comedy special, Tiffany Haddish’s ‘calling card’ is open for the taking”. Los Angeles Times.
- ^ Framke, Caroline (August 27, 2017). “Tiffany Haddish’s new standup special proves her Girls Trip breakout was no fluke—and overdue”. Vox. Retrieved 2018-01-25.
- ^ Gibbs, Adrienne (11 November 2017). “‘Girls Trip’ Breakout Star Tiffany Haddish Making History Hosting ‘SNL’; Taylor Swift Performing”. Forbes.
- ^ Cowles, Gregory (2017-12-15). “Tiffany Haddish on Bar Mitzvahs, Pimping and Other Rites of Passage”. The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-01-25.
- ^ Bennett, Laura. “How Tucker Max Went From Chronicling His Drunken Sexual Conquests to Ghostwriting Tiffany Haddish’s Memoir”. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
- ^ Goldberg, Lesley (10 May 2017). “‘The Carmichael Show’ Breakout to Co-Star in TBS’ Tracy Morgan Comedy”. The Hollywood Reporter.
- ^ “‘Girls Trip’ Breakout Tiffany Haddish Joins Kevin Hart in ‘Night School’ (Exclusive)”. Retrieved 22 August 2017.
- ^ Ryan, Maureen; Holloway, Daniel (2018-01-24). “Tiffany Haddish Signs First-Look Deal With HBO (EXCLUSIVE)”. Variety. Retrieved 2018-01-25.
- ^ “Tiffany Haddish lands animated Netflix series from BoJack Horseman creators”. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
- ^ Jr, Mike Fleming (23 October 2017). “Paramount Lands Pitch Vehicle For ‘Girls Trip’ Breakout Tiffany Haddish”. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- ^ Haddish, Tiffany (2017). The Last Black Unicorn. Simon & Schuster.
- ^ News, A. B. C. (2017-11-13). “5 things to know about ‘SNL’ host Tiffany Haddish”. ABC News. Retrieved 2017-12-13.
- ^ “Tiffany Haddish Stewart Vs William Stewart – UniCourt”. unicourt.com. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- ^ Parker, Najja (14 March 2016). “Tiffany Haddish Brings It All Full Circle”. Ebony.
- ^ Wieselman, Jarett (19 July 2017). “Hollywood’s Next Queen Of Comedy Has Arrived”. BuzzFeed.
- ^ “Actress Tiffany Haddish to be Honored at “Intro to Robo” Event for Work in Foster Youth Advocacy”. Los Angeles – Living Advantage, Inc. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
- ^ Thompson, Anne. “New York Film Critics Favor A24’s Lady Bir’ and The Florida Project – IndieWire”. http://www.indiewire.com. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- ^ N’Duka, Amanda (30 November 2017). “Tiffany Haddish, Billy Dee Williams & ‘Power’s Omari Hardwick Named 2018 ABFF Honors Recipients”. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- ^ “Tiffany Haddish, John Cho Join Ike Barinholtz in Satirical Thriller ‘The Oath’ (Exclusive)”. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
- ^ Yoo, Noah (August 4, 2017). “JAY-Z’s New Video Is a Black “Friends” Remake: Watch”. Pitchfork. Retrieved December 31, 2017.
- ^ Amatulli, Jenna. “Maroon 5, Cardi B’s ‘Girls Like You’ Video Is A Star-Studded Dance Party”. HuffPost. Archived from the original on May 31, 2018. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
- ^ Glicksman, Josh. “Maroon 5 Releases New Version of ‘Girls Like You’ Music Video: Watch”. Billboard. Retrieved December 31, 2018.
- ^ “Maroon 5 – Girls Like You (feat. Cardi B)”. Spotify.
- ^ “Tiffany Haddish, Drake, and All The Jews Who Rocked The BET Awards”. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
- ^ “Get Out “Sinks” the Competition at The Black Reel Awards”. February 23, 2018. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
- ^ “Grammys: Tiffany Haddish Nabs Best Spoken-Word Nomination”. The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 23, 2019.
- ^ “Nominees/Winners”. Television Academy. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
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- 1979 births
- 21st-century American actresses
- 21st-century American comedians
- 21st-century American women writers
- 21st-century American writers
- Actresses from Los Angeles
- African-American actresses
- African-American comedians
- American film actresses
- American people of Eritrean descent
- American people of Ethiopian-Jewish descent
- American stand-up comedians
- American television actresses
- American voice actresses
- American women comedians
- Comedians from California
- El Camino Real High School alumni
- Living people