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Oscar nominee Taraji P. Henson is the cover story for the latest issue of Monarch magazine.

Here are some excerpts and pics from the interview:

Who was your inspiration when you first began your acting career? I would have to say Diana Ross was my original inspiration. My all-time favorite movie is Mahoghany. I love the character that she played. But when I went to Howard, Debbie Allen was it. I was told that I reminded people of her because of my lively spirit and spunk.

Who is your inspiration now? Oh, the incomparable Ms. Ruby Dee by far. I remember when I was at Howard, Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis would come teach a theater class and I as always front and center row. They were amazing and truly inspirational. James Earl Jones even compared me to Ruby Dee once and I was honored.

Taraji’s one on one with Radio One’s Cathy Hughes.

What’s the one thing you do without on a daily basis? Oh, that’s an easy one, I can’t live…without a kiss and hug from my son.

What achievement to date are you most proud of? Being a mother! Honestly, I have done a hell of a job as a single mother and Marcell is an incredible kid. I believe children are closest to God’s heart, like little angels, and because I take good care of him that’s why I am so blessed.

Get Taraji’s Oscar hair.

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