TERRENCE HOWARD (Quentin) is currently starring in Prisoners, opposite Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis. Howard was recently seen in Lee Daniels' The Butler, alongside Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey. 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 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 Performance.
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. In 1999, his performance in The Best Man 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.
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 he quickly followed with several notable television appearances in series such as Living Single and NYPD Blue. Soon after, he was offered a lead role in the series Sparks. More recently, Howard was seen in Law & Order: LA, a role for which he won an NAACP Image 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.