Pauletta Pearson
Birth Date:
September 28, 1950
Birth Place:
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Mrs. Washington


Pauletta Pearson, also known as Pauletta Washington and Pauletta Pearson Washington, is perhaps best known as the wife of actor, director, screenwriter and producer Denzel Washington. Married in 1983, they have four children together (John, Katia and the twins Olivia and Malcolm). The couple was awarded the Humanitarian Award at the 2000 Women in Film Crystal Awards. A former beauty pageant contestant, Mrs. Washington has irregularly worked as an actress. Her acting credits include a role in the 1977 television film “Wilma” and a role on the TV sitcom “The Parkers” (2 episodes, 2003-2004).

Mother of 4

Childhood and Family:

Pauletta Pearson was born on September 28, 1950, in the state of New York. She is the sister of actress and film crew member Rita Pearson.

On June 25, 1983, Pauletta married actor Denzel Washington (born December 28, 1954), whom she met on the set of the 1977 TV film “Wilma.” The couple has children named John David (born July 28, 1984), Katia (born November 1987) and twins Malcolm and Olivia (born April 10, 1991). In 1995, Pauletta and her husband renewed their wedding vows in South Africa with Archbishop Desmond Tutu overseeing the ceremony.



In 1970, at age 20, Pauletta Pearson became the first African American contestant in the Miss North Carolina Pageant, where she was the 2nd runner-up. She first appeared onscreen seven years later in the NBC television film “Wilma” (1977), based on the life of American track sprinter Wilma Rudolph (played by Shirley Jo Finney). In the film, she played the role of Mae Faggs. During the production of the film, she met her future husband, Danzel Washington, who also made his TV debut with the Bud Greenspan directed and written film.

In 1981, Pearson landed a part in the Emmy nominated television version of “Purlie.” The TV film starred Robert Guillaume as Purlie Victorious Judson. In 1995, she worked on the animated television series “Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child.”

Three years later, Pearson made her big screen debut in “Beloved,” a dramatic film based on the novel of the same name by Toni Morrison. The movie was directed by Jonathan Demme, produced by Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Productions, and starred Winfrey, Danny Glover and Thandie Newton. The film was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Costume Design but only scored $22,852,487 at the box office against a budget of $80 million.

During 2003 to 2004, Pearson had a recurring role on the UPN situation comedy “The Parkers” when she played Terri Angelou in the episodes “Join the Club” and “Judge Not a Book.” She has also appeared in the 1994 “Ebony's 15th Annual Black Achievement Awards,” the 2001 “Essence Awards” and the “BET Awards” in 2005. More recently, in January 28, 2011, she appeared as a guest on the talk show “The Wendy Williams Show.”


  • Women in Film Crystal: Humanitarian Award, 2000

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The third time was the charm for Denzel Washington when it came to asking his wife to marry him.Access Hollywood caught up with the actor and wife Pauletta Washington at the premiere of his latest mov...
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