LaTanya Richardson Biography

LaTanya Richardson photo

A native of Atlanta, Georgia, LaTanya Richardson graduated from Spelman College in 1974 with a B.A. in theater. While enrolled at the all-female institution, she met Samuel L. Jackson, who was studying acting at Morehouse College (an all-male institution affiliated with Spelman). The two would get married in 1980. After graduation she was convinced by legendary theater producer Joseph Papp to move to New York, where he cast her in several plays with his New York Shakespeare festival. Richardson and her husband settled down in Harlem and she continued to act in onstage while Jackson carried on with the film career he'd begun in Atlanta.

In the late 1980s, Richardson started to find work on television with guest appearances on various shows that were shot in New York. She made her feature film debut in Hangin' with the Homeboys (1991). Roles in The Super (1991), Fried Green Tomatoes (1991) and Juice (1992), also starring her husband, followed. In 1992, she landed a regular role on the L.A.-based sitcom Frannie's Turn, and she moved with Jackson and their daughter, Zoe, to California. Jackson immediately landed a starring role in the big budget feature Loaded Weapon 1 (1993), and although Richardson's sitcom didn't last, she soon bounced back with roles in Malcolm X (1992), starring Denzel Washington and Lorenzo's Oil (1992), starring Nick Nolte.

Richardson continues to work steadily in feature films such as Sleepless in Seattle (1993), When a Man Loves a Woman (1994), Losing Isaiah (1995), Lone Star (1996), U.S. Marshals (1999) and The Fighting Temptations (2003). She also has numerous television guest appearances to her credit, on shows such as Law & Order, Cheers, Party of Five, Chicago Hope, NYPD Blue, Ally McBeal, Judging Amy, Once and Again and Boston Public.

She lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband. Their daughter is currently attending Vassar College.


Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (2004)
The Fighting Temptations (2003)
U.S. Marshals (1998)
Secrets (1997)
Julian Po (1997)
Loved (1997)
Lone Star (1996)
Losing Isaiah (1995)
When a Man Loves a Woman (1994)
Sleepless in Seattle (1993)
Lorenzo's Oil (1992)
Malcolm X (1992)
Juice (1992)
Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)
The Super (1991)
Hangin' with the Homeboys (1991)

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