Ter­rific Tiffany

Ru­bina Mulla delves into the in­cred­i­ble jour­ney of in­ter­na­tional co­me­dian and ac­tress Tiffany Had­dish.

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Coura­geous, con­fi­dent

and an all-out en­ter­tainer, co­me­dian Tiffany Had­dish gives ev­ery­thing she does her all. Tiffany is a liv­ing ex­am­ple of the adage, ‘Success shines bright­est on those who work the hard­est’.

RAGS TO RICHES

Grow­ing up was no bed of roses for young Tiffany. Her fa­ther left her and her mother when she was just three, and a few years down the line, her mother suf­fered brain dam­age fol­low­ing a car ac­ci­dent. It fell on young Tiffany, just around nine at that time, to be­come the pri­mary care­giver for her younger half-sib­lings. At 12, she was placed in foster care, forced to find a way to cope with new sit­u­a­tions and peo­ple, un­til the age of 15 when she was re­united with her sib­lings and grand­mother.

It fell on young Tiffany, just around nine at that time, to be­come the pri­mary care­giver for her younger half-sib­lings.

Along the way, there were sev­eral hur­dles she had to over­come - in­clud­ing a spell of be­ing broke and home­less. But she con­tin­ued to have faith in her­self and her dreams. Her per­se­ver­ance paid off. Tiffany went on to break sev­eral bar­ri­ers and find her place both as an ac­tress and a co­me­dian. She made tele­vi­sion his­tory by be­com­ing the first black wo­man to host the very pop­u­lar Amer­i­can se­ries ‘Satur­day Night Live’. Re­count­ing an in­ci­dent from ear­lier on in her life, she averred, “I re­mem­ber this lady told me, ‘Tiffany, you got a lot go­ing on. Ei­ther you’re gonna be a star, or you’re go­ing to jail’. So, I’m glad I chose the star part.”

RIS­ING STAR

Tiffany got her first break with com­edy com­pe­ti­tion Bill Bel­lamy’s ‘Who’s Got Jokes?’ be­fore go­ing on to make sev­eral guest ap­pear­ances in a va­ri­ety of TV shows. She even­tu­ally scored re­cur­ring and star­ring roles on shows like ‘Real Hus­bands Of Hol­ly­wood’, ‘If Lov­ing You Is Wrong’ and ‘The Carmichael Show’. She even starred in a cou­ple of films, but rose to fame with her crit­i­cally ac­claimed per­for­mance in the film ‘Girls Trip’ along­side Queen Lat­i­fah, Jada Pin­kett Smith and Regina Hall.

Not one to hold back, she let her funny side run wild in her much loved com­edy special ‘Tiffany Had­dish: She Ready! From The Hood To Hol­ly­wood’. In 2017, she penned a mem­oir ti­tled ‘The Last Black Uni­corn’ which digs deep into her life with hi­lar­i­ous re­sults. Listed amongst ‘Time’ mag­a­zine’s 100 Most In­flu­en­tial Peo­ple for 2018, it seems that Tiffany’s fans just can’t get enough of her.

She is the new com­edy queen of the west, with up­com­ing re­leases like ‘The Kitchen’ (2019), ‘The List’ (2018) and ‘Night School’. Well, we all love a good an­i­ma­tion film, and in ‘ The Lego Movie’ se­quel (2019), our girl Tiffany

“This is an Alexan­der McQueen. This is a $4,000 dress. I’m gonna wear this dress mul­ti­ple times.”

will hit some vo­cal highs by be­ing the voice of one of the char­ac­ters in the film. Au­di­ences are bound to go gaga! More in­sights into a phe­nom­e­non called Tiffany…

THE ALEXAN­DER MCQUEEN DRESS

Hail­ing from an un­der­priv­i­leged back­ground, the ac­tress doesn’t be­lieve in parad­ing her wealth. She was spot­ted wear­ing the same Alexan­der McQueen dress on mul­ti­ple oc­ca­sions - a rare sight in movie land. She ad­dressed the trolls in her open­ing mono­logue on SNL say­ing, “My whole team told me, ‘Tiffany, you can­not wear that dress on SNL’. And I said, ‘I don’t give a dang about no taboo. I spent a lot of money on this dress. This dress costs way more than my mort­gage. This is an Alexan­der McQueen. This is a $4,000 dress. I’m gonna wear this dress mul­ti­ple times’.”

“...I think my life turned out as good as it has be­cause all the time I’m just try­ing to have fun!”

TIFFANY’S TAKE ON RE­LA­TION­SHIPS

Tiffany has been very vo­cal about her de­sires. She is look­ing for a man who can give her but­ter­flies in her stom­ach. She says she is all ac­com­moda­tive and can resched­ule her plans for some but­ter­flies. Tiffany is al­ways heard gush­ing about her dream man and we hope she finds him soon.

Her love life, how­ever, has not been hunky-dory; the ac­tor was a vic­tim of phys­i­cal abuse. Tiffany, in her mem­oir ‘The Last Black Uni­corn’, shared her strug­gle with be­ing phys­i­cally abused by her hus­band and the en­su­ing or­deal dur­ing which she mis­car­ried. She even­tu­ally sep­a­rated from her hus­band Wil­liam Ste­wart for the sec­ond time in 2013.

THE FUNNY SIDE OF LIFE

In 1997, Tiffany’s so­cial worker gave her an ul­ti­ma­tum: Ei­ther she at­tend psy­chi­atric ther­apy or go to the Laugh Fac­tory Com­edy Camp. Com­edy hav­ing been her pre­ferred out­let to cope with ev­ery­thing she was deal­ing with, there is lit­tle doubt which op­tion she chose. It helped her dis­cover her pas­sion and, as she likes to put it, lit­er­ally saved her life. She sums it up, “...I think my life turned out as good as it has be­cause all the time I’m just try­ing to have fun!”

With the spirit of a win­ner and a heart of gold, Tiffany is a true uni­corn and her story con­tin­ues to in­spire au­di­ences. She says, “Some­times I would be feel­ing like, ‘Aww man, I don’t think this is gonna hap­pen’, or, ‘I’m about to fail’ and then my mind is like, ‘Unh-uh, you not al­lowed to think like that. Take that out of your mind’.

A les­son for all of us on see­ing the brighter side of things dur­ing our dark­est mo­ments, Tiffany Had­dish is true in­spi­ra­tion. She also serves as a re­minder that if we be­lieve in our dreams, we can achieve them - come what may.

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