Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker: Miniseries (2020)


Miniseries
Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker

Critics Consensus

Self Made doesn't always live up to its namesake, but there's no denying that Octavia Spencer's spectacular embodiment of the singular Madam C.J. Walker is a sight to be seen.

68%

TOMATOMETER

Critic Ratings: 25

63%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 159

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Episodes

Air date: Mar 20, 2020

Aspiring to be more than a washerwoman, Sarah grows determined to sell Addie's hair product. But when she's cruelly rebuffed, the gloves come off.

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Air date: Mar 20, 2020

Sarah's dream of opening a factory hinges on securing the support of local Black businessmen -- and an endorsement from the famous Booker T. Washington.

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Air date: Mar 20, 2020

Sarah's ambitious plans for expanding her empire take her to New York -- and lead to betrayals personal and professional that threaten all she's built.

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Air date: Mar 20, 2020

The combined blows of a health scare, worker issues and a tragedy that hits close to home push Sarah to take decisive action about her life and legacy.

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Tv Season Info

Cast & Crew

Carmen Ejogo
Addie Munroe
Kevin Carroll
Freeman Ransom
Bill Bellamy
Sweetness
Blair Underwood
C.J. Walker
Octavia Spencer
Sarah Breedlove
Mark Holder
Executive Producer
Kasi Lemmons
Executive Producer
Elle Johnson
Executive Producer
Janine Sherman Barrois
Executive Producer
LeBron James
Executive Producer
Jamal Henderson
Executive Producer
Maverick Carter
Executive Producer
Octavia Spencer
Executive Producer
Christine Holder
Executive Producer
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News & Interviews for Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker: Miniseries

Critic Reviews for Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker Miniseries

All Critics (25) | Top Critics (11)

The eminently talented Spencer gives it the best she's got, despite some truly cringeworthy dialogue. But once her business is established as a success near the end of Chapter 2, the plot devolves into a series of telenovela storylines.

Mar 23, 2020 | Full Review…

It's been long past time for Madam C.J. Walker to get her due on the small or big screen, but this series is sadly a disservice to her.

Mar 23, 2020 | Rating: D | Full Review…

A compelling if clunky drama about an important figure.

Mar 19, 2020 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

A smart, genuine portrayal of a venerable figure.

Mar 13, 2020 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

The story would have been better served by six or eight episodes rather than just four, but you'll still be glad you watched to learn about an unsung historical figure. Here's to more hidden figures coming to light.

Jul 18, 2020 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Rather Hallmark in style, but a pleasant enough diversion.

Apr 10, 2020 | Full Review…

Solid drama highlights the life of legendary entrepreneur.

Apr 7, 2020 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Walker's story is a vital American saga too long left untold, and Self Made relates it with the kind of fierce, spirited vitality that finally makes that fact thoroughly, thrillingly inarguable.

Apr 4, 2020 | Full Review…

I wish the series would have slowed down and allowed the audience more time with Walker as she built her empire, spent more time with her as she wrestled with self-doubt and prejudice.

Apr 3, 2020 | Full Review…

The story of C.J Walker has all the ingredients of a great product; they've just not come together here...Octavia Spencer is excellent in this disappointingly superficial biographical drama.

Mar 26, 2020 | Rating: 6/10 | Full Review…

Walker is a role that allows Spencer to show her true range and depth. It's an extraordinary performance in an entertaining and triumphant story.

Mar 26, 2020 | Full Review…

While the series is limited, the talent behind the cast and crew is anything but.

Mar 25, 2020 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker: Miniseries

  • Feb 16, 2021
    I thought this movie was excellent. I generally have low expectations for movies based on "true events," but this one was riveting and inspiring. If you get nothing from it but the history of this incredible woman, than you have time well spent. I'm so glad this movie was made.
  • Nov 08, 2020
    If they put this movie in a better time period it might be better, but very fictional. Maybe should of called this "the stolen formula"
  • Oct 11, 2020
    This series had lots of historical inaccuracies (I read up on the subject beforehand) and it was not interesting to watch.
  • Oct 11, 2020
    Despite the historical inaccuracies, I found this show entertaining, informative, and inspiring. The only thing I disliked was the emphasis on rivalry! I definitely recommend giving this show a watch.
  • Oct 10, 2020
    This series is boring, even though the life it's based on is interesting. That's a kind of achievement, I guess. Octavia Spencer is a good actress, but she's wasted on this material.
  • Aug 14, 2020
    Self Made is a Netflix shining gem! From the first moment you begin to watch, it is like sliding into a huge tub of honey. Comfortable, warm, the characters envelop you and, so quickly, you feel as if you have known some of them your whole life only, you haven't. Perhaps that's what falling in love feels like? By the end of the first two episodes, I felt every emotion that this amazingly strong, defiant, stubborn, beautiful woman must have felt. Joy and sorrow, success and disappointment, trust and betrayal all the while battling against not only prejudice against people of colour but, many people of colour and their low opinions of themselves. I was truly unable to switch off my TV once I began to watch. Definitely a weekend binge series! AWESOME!
  • Jul 13, 2020
    Despite some historical inaccuracies this show brings attention to how the one of the biggest names in the hair industry made her mark.
  • May 20, 2020
    A fascinating look into the life of Madam C. J. Walker, who is played exquisitely by Octavia Spencer. It may only last four rather short episodes, but Spencer is simply brilliant in the role. Tiffany Haddish (Lelia) and Blair Underwood (Charles) give very fine performances, too. It's paced well, edited nicely and impressively acted. There are a few issues, mainly the apparent fictionalisation of some stories; especially regarding Addie Munroe (Carmen Ejogo). Parts of the set design, most notably across the first two episodes, don't quite look right to me for the era it's portraying. That latter thing isn't anything major, while the former is OK as long as it works for the show which it does. Worth watching!
  • May 19, 2020
    They hired some great actors...to bad it was a waste of talent. the story was awful nothing was true.... Octavia has one more mess up until im done supporting her. she lost me in ma, even though she is a great actress she picks some of the most awful parts. In this case her acting was good but totally mis guided in the sense that she wasn't playing madam walker she was playing a woman in her shoes with modern problems. it would have been wonderful to see her play the actual Madame walker.
  • May 17, 2020
    I loved this movie. Octavia Spencer was magnificient. A little hokey at times, the rags to riches story was really good!

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