Tiffany Haddish Biography

Tiffany Sara Cornilia Haddish is an American actress and stand-up comedian who was born on December 3, 1979. The Hollywood Reporter put her among the 100 most powerful individuals in industry in both 2018 and 2019, while Time magazine named her one of the 100 most important people in the world in 2018.

Haddish rose to fame for her portrayal as Nekeisha Williams on the NBC sitcom The Carmichael Show after appearing as a guest star on a number of television shows (2015–2017). Her breakthrough came with a starring role in the 2017 comedy Girls Trip, which brought her numerous honors—including nominations for two Critics’ Choice Awards—and landed her on The New Yorker’s list of the finest film performances of the twenty-first century. She published a memoir titled The Last Black Unicorn and received a Primetime Emmy Award in 2017 for hosting an episode of Saturday Night Live (2017).

Haddish portrayed Tuca in the Netflix/Adult Swim cartoon series Tuca & Bertie from 2019 to the present, executive produced The Last O.G. on TBS from 2018 to 2020, and appeared in the crime comedy The Afterparty (2022–present). The Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album she earned in 2019 for her album Black Mitzvah made her the second African-American woman to receive this honor following Whoopi Goldberg in 1986.

Early life 

California’s South Central is where Haddish was born and reared. Her father, Tsihaye Reda Haddish, was of Ethiopian Jewish ancestry and a refugee from Eritrea. Leola, her mother, was an African-American woman from a Christian family who ran a modest business. [13] [14][15][16] Haddish’s mother remarried after her father abandoned the family when she was three years old, giving birth to Haddish’s two half-sisters and two half-brothers.

Jasmine English, Tiffany’s sister, finished seventh on the television competition Claim to Fame before being eliminated on August 15, 2022.

Haddish’s mother Leola experienced significant brain damage in a car accident in 1988 while her family was residing in Colton, California. Haddish claimed that her mother turned irritable, angry, and abusive as a result of what was thought to be the cause of Leola’s schizophrenia. Haddish, the oldest of five siblings at the time and nine years old, took up the role of primary caregiver for the family. [18] Haddish realized her talent for making people laugh at this point. She stated: “I would be less likely to be defeated if I could make [Leola] laugh and channel her rage into some joy. The same thing happened at school: If I could make the kids laugh, they would assist me with my assignments and keep me safe from bullies.”

Haddish claims that her stepfather later admitted to her that he had tampered with her mother’s car’s brakes with the intention of causing the collision to kill Haddish, her siblings, and her mother so he could be reimbursed by their life insurance policies. The kids, on the other hand, opted to remain at home that day, and her mother’s accident did not prove deadly.

Haddish and her siblings were temporarily split up and placed in foster care when she was 13 years old. She made jokes while she was there to get over being among unknown people. She and her brothers were reunited when she was 15 years old, cared after by their grandma. She experienced toxic shock syndrome at one time early in her life and was hospitalized.

She was the school mascot at El Camino Real High School in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, where she also attended George Ellery Hale Middle School before graduating.

She claimed that until high school, she struggled to read effectively, but after receiving assistance from a teacher, her skills improved.

Despite her award-winning participation in drama competitions where she performed Shakespearean monologues, she also got into a lot of problems at school. Haddish said in 2018 that she had been sexually assaulted by a police cadet when she was 17 years old, which she claims caused her to be combative when fending off unwelcome attempts from men. Haddish spent some time in her car while she was homeless after finishing high school.

Haddish, then 17 years old, chose comedy as a release for her pain in 1997 after being given the choice between psychiatric counseling and the Laugh Factory Comedy Camp by her social worker. She claims that numerous well-known comedians, such as Richard Pryor, Dane Cook, Charles Fleischer, and the Wayans brothers, served as mentors in helping her find a love for humor that “actually saved her life.” She includes elements of her personal experiences in her performances because she feels like it creates a “safe zone” for her.

Haddish was accepted to New York University, but she decided against going because of the cost and her dislike of debt. Later on, she went to Santa Monica College. She worked in customer service for Air New Zealand at Los Angeles International Airport and for Alaska Airlines before becoming successful on-screen. In her twenties, when she was just starting out in comedy, she claimed to have lived in her car.

Career 

2006–2017: Breakthrough with Girls Trip 

Haddish’s first break came when she won a slot on Bill Bellamy’s Who’s Got Jokes?, a comedy competition. She has guest starred in films like Meet the Spartans and Janky Promoters, and she has appeared on shows like 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 was a recurrent character on Real Husbands of Hollywood in 2013. She was chosen to star in the drama series If Loving You Is Wrong on the Oprah Winfrey Network in 2014. She departed the show after the first season to take a recurring part on the NBC sitcom The Carmichael Show, where she played Bobby Carmichael’s (Lil Rel Howery) semi-estranged wife Nekeisha for three seasons. She co-starred as Hi C in the comedy Keanu in 2016 alongside Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key.

Haddish appeared in the comedy Girls Trip in 2017 along with Regina Hall, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Queen Latifah.

It received overwhelmingly positive reviews from critics, earning a Rotten Tomatoes approval rating of 91% and a Metacritic “generally favorable reviews” score of 71 out of 100.

Haddish received praise for her portrayal of the boisterous, upbeat Dina, with several commentators comparing her debut to Melissa McCarthy’s.

According to Katie Walsh of the Chicago Tribune “It will make Haddish a star since it is her film. It is evident as soon as she appears on the screen.” The highest-grossing comedy movie of 2017 was Girls Trip, which made over $140 million worldwide against a $20 million production budget. Haddish’s performance made The New Yorker’s selection of the top cinematic moments of the twenty-first century in 2021. Richard Brody, the list’s creator, stated “Haddish infuses her work with the power of her own experience, unlike the majority of comedians, including those who perform improv, who seem to develop a persona. She delivered a seventeen-minute speech at the New York Film Critics Circle gala in 2018, and if it had been turned into a movie, it would have made my list as well. Even though they are both excellent, it and her Girls Trip performance merely scratch the surface of her creative creativity.”

Tiffany Haddish: She Ready!, a stand-up comedy special, was released in August 2017. Showtime hosted the premiere of From the Hood to Hollywood. Haddish is just really damn funny, and deserves a recommendation wherever we can give it to her, according to Caroline Framke, who reviewed the special for Vox. “[She] 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,” Framke wrote. Haddish and Deon Cole co-hosted the BET game show Face Value. She was the first African-American woman stand-up comedian to host an episode of Saturday Night Live on November 11, 2017, and for doing so, she was honored with the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series. The Last Black Unicorn, a memoir co-written with Tucker Max, was published by Simon & Schuster in December 2017 and debuted at number 15 on The New York Times best-seller list.

2018–present: Night School and other roles

Haddish made her sitcom debut as the lead opposite Tracy Morgan in the TBS comedy The Last O.G. starting in 2018. In addition to a main role alongside Kevin Hart in the comedy Night School, she also played supporting roles in Uncle Drew and reunited with Girls Trip director Malcolm D. Lee. She also starred alongside Tika Sumpter, Omari Hardwick, Mehcad Brooks, Amber Riley, and Whoopi Goldberg in the Tyler Perry film Nobody’s Fool. The movie earned over $33 million worldwide and received a mixed bag of reviews from reviewers. [51] In 2018, Haddish got a first-look contract with HBO and was recognized by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential persons in the world. She was included on the list of the 100 most influential people in entertainment that same year, and again in 2019.

Haddish provided the voices of Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi in The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, Daisy in The Secret Life of Pets 2, and Tuca in the May 2019 launch of the Netflix animated sitcom Tuca & Bertie. Also in that year, Haddish served as both host and producer for ABC’s revival of Kids Say the Darndest Things. It made its debut on October 6 as a part of a three-hour block of family-friendly programming. Tiffany Haddish Presents: They Ready, her newest comedy special, debuted on Netflix in August 2019. Haddish featured one of her favorite stand-up comedians in each episode to give them exposure to a wider audience. Chaunté Wayans, April Macie, Tracey Ashley, Aida Rodriguez, Flame Monroe, and Marlo Williams all performed stand-up routines in the series. With Rose Byrne and Salma Hayek, Haddish co-starred in Like a Boss, the first studio comedy movie of the new decade, for Paramount Pictures in 2020.

Haddish was approached to host the 2021 Grammy Awards pre-telecast premiere gala, but she declined after the Recording Academy informed her that she would be responsible for her own travel expenses. She clarified that the three-hour event’s hair, makeup, and attire would not be paid for by the academy, adding: “I would have to pay for everything out of my own cash, […] I’m not sure if this means I won’t ever receive another nomination, but I believe it’s rude. […] It’s comparable to a guy asking you out but then insisting that you pay for it.” The news that she had won the 2021 Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album for Black Mitzvah was sent to her in the midst of a Kids Say the Darndest Things taping.

Personal life 

In 2008, Haddish wed William Stewart. She referred to their first wedding as “one of the finest days of [her] life,” and he assisted her in finding her formerly estranged father who had led her down the aisle. In Los Angeles County, she filed for divorce in 2011, and it was finalized in 2013. She dated the rapper Common from the middle of 2020 to November of 2021. For her Suitcase Drive for Foster Youth, where she collected suitcases that foster youth can use to store their stuff, Haddish collaborated with Living Advantage, a nonprofit organization that focuses on the welfare of foster youth. At the Laugh Factory Comedy Camp, she does volunteer work. Her She Ready Foundation additionally supports foster care initiatives. On May 22, 2019, while taking part in celebrations there honoring the 28th anniversary of Eritrea’s independence from Ethiopia, Haddish became a naturalized citizen of Eritrea. She made her first trip there in 2018 to bury her Eritrean father, who had fled to the United States as a refugee, and to get in touch with her family. Haddish admitted to having dabbled in Scientology for a brief period of time in 2017. At the age of 40, Haddish, whose father was Jewish, celebrated her bat mitzvah in December 2019. Sister of the comedian Sarah Silverman and reform rabbi Susan Silverman performed the ceremony.

Legal issues 

Arrests 

Haddish was detained on a DUI allegation on January 14, 2022, in Peachtree City, Georgia, as a result of police suspicions that she had been smoking marijuana. Police got a 911 call from a driver on Highway 74 who had passed out while driving around 4:00 in the morning. Police caught up with Haddish as she tried to pull into a driveway of a home in an Atlanta suburb, driving the car the 911 operator had described. She was arrested at the Fayette County Jail and then released on a $1,666 bond the same day. Haddish was in the region at the time to take part in Haunted Mansion filming.

Sexual abuse allegation 

Haddish was detained on a DUI allegation on January 14, 2022, in Peachtree City, Georgia, as a result of police suspicions that she had been smoking marijuana. Police got a 911 call from a driver on Highway 74 who had passed out while driving around 4:00 in the morning. Police caught up with Haddish as she tried to pull into a driveway of a home in an Atlanta suburb, driving the car the 911 operator had described. She was arrested at the Fayette County Jail and then released on a $1,666 bond the same day. Haddish was in the region at the time to take part in Haunted Mansion filming.

Filmography