TERRENCE HOWARD (Franklin Birch) is currently on screens starring in "Lee
Daniels' The Butler," alongside Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey and Melissa Leo. Howard is
perhaps best known for his Golden Globe- and Academy Award-nominated work in "Hustle &
Flow." For the movie, Howard, a self-taught musician who plays both piano and guitar,
performed all the tracks for his character, including "It's Hard Out Here For a Pimp," which won
the Academy Award for Best Original Song. Howard also garnered numerous accolades for his
supporting role in "Crash," receiving a National Board of Review Award for Best Breakthrough
Howard made his film debut in 1993 in "Who's the Man?," which he followed with a
role in the period saga "Dead Presidents." Howard was next noticed for his role as a star high
school athlete in "Mr. Holland's Opus," and in 1999, for his performance in "The Best Man," he was honored with the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor, an Independent
Spirit Award nomination and a Chicago Film Critics Association Award nomination.
Howard's additional feature film credits include such diverse roles as Ray Charles' one-
time guitarist Gossie McKee in the Academy Award-nominated "Ray," as well as "Pride," "The
Brave One," "August Rush" and "Iron Man."
Howard took on another real-life figure, playing Nelson Mandela alongside Jennifer
Hudson in the film "Winnie Mandela," which premiered at the Toronto International Film
Festival in 2011. He also starred alongside Cuba Gooding Jr. and Bryan Cranston in executive
producer George Lucas' "Red Tails," appeared in "On the Road," with Garrett Hedlund and
Viggo Mortensen, played an FBI agent in Robert Redford's "The Company You Keep," and was
in the thriller "Dead Man Down," with Colin Farrell. He recently completed filming the sequel
to the hit film "The Best Man," entitled "The Best Man Holiday," which reunites the original
Born in Chicago, Illinois, Howard began his acting career on the small screen as Jackie
Jackson in the ABC miniseries "The Jacksons: An American Dream," which was quickly
followed by several notable TV appearances on series such as "Living Single" and "NYPD
Blue." Soon after, he was offered a lead role in the series "Sparks." Howard was more recently
seen in "Law and Order: Los Angeles," a role for which he won an NAACP award for Best
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series.
In 2008, Howard made his Broadway debut in an all-African-American production of
Tennessee Williams' "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof."
When not acting, the philanthropist and father of three has involved himself in a great
deal of other projects, including becoming an ambassador for Entertainment Industry Foundation
(EIF) and Stand Up To Cancer. Very involved in cancer research, Howard has done many public
service announcements for the cause.
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