Margaret Avery

Margaret Avery

Highest Rated: 76% The Color Purple (1985)

Lowest Rated: 20% Which Way Is Up? (1977)

Birthday: Jan 20, 1944

Birthplace: Mangum, Oklahoma, USA

Margaret Avery was an American actress born in Mangum, Oklahoma on January 20, 1944. Graduating from San Francisco State University with an education degree in 1965, she began acting in stage productions while working as a substitute teacher. Avery made her debut in the TV movie "Something Evil" (1972), directed by Steven Spielberg. That same year, she made her film debut in "Cool Breeze" (1972), a sign of her prolific work in so-called "Blaxploitation" films to come. Throughout the '70s and early '80s, Avery continued to build up supporting TV and film role credits, such as a one episode appearance on "Sanford and Son" (NBC, 1972-77) in 1975. In 1985, Avery landed her biggest and most widely praised role to date as Shug in "The Color Purple" (1985). After Tina Turner turned down the role, director Spielberg cast Avery after working with her 13 years prior on "Something Evil." She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the role, but nevertheless lost after she placed an ad in a trade publication, waging a campaign in order to receive the award. Since "The Color Purple," Avery's roles have been brief appearances in TV shows, mostly, including roles on "The Cosby Show" (NBC, 1984-92) in 1992 and "Walker, Texas Ranger" (CBS, 1993-2001) in 1997. Recently, however, she has received success and praise for her main cast role on the drama "Being Mary Jane" (BET, 2013- ).

Highest rated movies

The Color Purple
Proud Mary
White Man's Burden
Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins
Hell up in Harlem
Which Way Is Up?




No Score Yet No Score Yet Is That Black Enough for You?!? Self - 2022
No Score Yet 80% Block Party Janice (Character),
Executive Producer
- 2022
No Score Yet 42% Grand-Daddy Day Care Unknown (Character) - 2019
No Score Yet No Score Yet Holly Day Unknown (Character) - 2018
25% 46% Proud Mary Mina (Character) $20.2M 2018
No Score Yet No Score Yet Being Mary Jane Helen Patterson (Character) - 2013
23% 63% Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins Mamma Jenkins (Character) $42.2M 2008
No Score Yet 67% Lord Help Us Dorinda Thomas (Character) - 2007
No Score Yet 36% Second to Die Insurance Agent (Character) - 2002
No Score Yet 0% Waitin' to Live Pearline Loggins (Character) - 2002
No Score Yet 15% The Set Up Olivia Dubois (Character) - 1995
24% 36% White Man's Burden Megan Thomas (Character) $3.6M 1995
No Score Yet No Score Yet Lightning in a Bottle Dr. Sierheed (Character) - 1994
No Score Yet 0% Mardi Gras for the Devil Miss Sadie (Character) - 1993
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Return of Superfly Francine (Character) - 1990
No Score Yet No Score Yet Heat Wave Roxie Turpin (Character) - 1990
No Score Yet No Score Yet Riverbend Bell Coleman (Character) - 1989
No Score Yet No Score Yet Blueberry Hill Hattie Cale (Character) $31.7K 1988
76% 94% The Color Purple Shug Avery (Character) $93.4M 1985
No Score Yet 78% For Us, the Living: The Medgar Evers Story Dottie (Character) - 1983
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Sky Is Gray Rosemary (Character) - 1980
No Score Yet 72% The Lathe of Heaven Heather LeLache (Character) - 1980
No Score Yet 75% Scott Joplin Belle Joplin (Character) - 1977
20% 83% Which Way Is Up? Annie Mae (Character) - 1977
No Score Yet No Score Yet Louis Armstrong: Chicago Style Alma Rae (Character) - 1975
22% 50% Hell up in Harlem Sister Jennifer (Character) - 1973
No Score Yet 37% Terror House Edwina (Character) - 1972
No Score Yet No Score Yet Cool Breeze Lark (Character) - 1972
No Score Yet 21% Something Evil Irene (Character) - 1971


No Score Yet 64% The Neighborhood Aunt Desiray (Guest Star) 2021
No Score Yet 77% Being Mary Jane Helen Patterson (Character) 2014-2015 2017 2019
89% 88% The Quest Eleanor Darnell (Guest Star) 2017
87% 91% The Carmichael Show Janet (Guest Star) 2017
90% 81% Bones Ivy Gillespie (Guest Star) 2005
No Score Yet 35% JAG Unknown (Guest Star) 2005
9% No Score Yet 10-8: Officers on Duty Unknown (Guest Star) 2003
17% No Score Yet 413 Hope St. Unknown (Guest Star) 1997
No Score Yet 8% Walker, Texas Ranger Unknown (Guest Star) 1997
40% No Score Yet Time Trax Unknown (Guest Star) 1993
No Score Yet 54% The Cosby Show Unknown (Guest Star) 1992
No Score Yet 75% MacGyver Unknown (Guest Star) 1991
71% 91% Miami Vice Unknown (Guest Star) 1987
No Score Yet No Score Yet Harry O Unknown (Guest Star) 1974-1976
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Rookies Unknown (Guest Star) 1972 1975
100% 100% Kolchak: The Night Stalker Unknown (Guest Star) 1975
No Score Yet 100% Sanford and Son Unknown (Guest Star) 1975
No Score Yet No Score Yet Kojak Unknown (Guest Star) 1974
No Score Yet No Score Yet The New Dick Van Dyke Show Unknown (Guest Star) 1973