Pauletta Washington

Two-time Academy Award winner Denzel Washington is frequently hailed as one of the greatest actors of all time and a charismatic, mesmerizing leading man in everything from powerful dramas to dynamic action thrillers—but he still considers his role as husband to his better half, wife Pauletta Washington, as the most important one he’s ever taken on.

“There is no secret to the perfect marriage,” he told The Guardian in 2010. “Everybody has their ups and downs; we’ve had ours. It’s hard work, you know. But we made a commitment. A spiritual foundation helps everything—marriage, work, peace of mind.”

Who is Denzel Washington married to?

Pauletta Washington was born Pauletta Pearson on September 28, 1950, in Newton, North Carolina, where she was raised alongside her sister, fellow actress Rita Pearson. Her father was a school principal and her mother was a teacher. Pauletta made history in 1970 as the first Black contestant in the Miss North Carolina pageant, where she finished as the second runner-up.

Pauletta is a vocalist and classically trained pianist; in fact, by age 10, she was competing in piano competitions. Her piano studies later led her to the North Carolina School of the Arts, The Juilliard School in New York, and graduate work at North Texas University. She got a job in musical theater at the Six Flags Over Texas theme park and loved it, but ultimately took the advice of her Six Flags musical director and moved to New York. There, she acted on Broadway until 1977, when she began venturing into film.

She is a member of the Spelman Board of Trustees and is one of the founding and executive members of The Brain Trust of Cedars-Sinai, a group that raises awareness and funds for brain care and research; she and Denzel both have been involved with the organization for over 20 years. Their family has also established the Pauletta and Denzel Washington Gifted Scholars Program, a community outreach program that enables undergraduate, graduate and medical students with an interest in science to work on exciting research projects underway in neurosciences at Cedars-Sinai. 

Related: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About Denzel Washington

How did Denzel Washington meet his wife, Pauletta?

Denzel and Pauletta began dating in the late 1970s after working together on the 1975 TV biopic Wilma, in which Denzel played Olympian Wilma Rudolph’s husband and Pauletta played a fellow track star. 

Pauletta also told Oprah in 1996 about their meeting, “A mutual friend of ours, who was also in the film, had given a party. And Denzel and his friends came at the very end of the party. We spoke again. We were reintroduced.” Then something truly spectacular happened. “The next night, I attended a play. I got there late, snuck in and just sat down. I didn’t look at who was around me, then at intermission, the lights came up and we were sitting next to each other.”

Denzel once revealed on Jimmy Kimmel Live that Pauletta had to pay for the cab ride on their first date because he ran out of money. 

Does Pauletta Washington sing?

In a 2011 appearance on The Wendy Williams Show, Washington shared that she considered herself to be more of a musician than an actress. She explained that it was because she was both a pianist and a vocalist. She also explained her reasoning for wanting to take a break from work to raise her children. “When I became pregnant,” Washington said, “I thought I had such a stable childhood with my mom, coming home and seeing my mom.” She said at the time of her pregnancy, Denzel was shooting the series St. Elsewhere in Los Angeles, while she was in New York doing Broadway. After considering the distance she thought, “Where would the child be?” She confirmed it was her choice “to be home and create a home” and said she was happy with her decision. 

How many kids do Denzel and Pauletta Washington they have?

The couple has four children. Denzel and Pauletta had their first child in 1984, a son named John David—who’s recently become an A-lister in his own right, starring in Tenet and BlacKkKlansman.

Three years after John David was born, they had a daughter, Katia, and then in 1991, they had twins Olivia and Malcolm.


Pauletta Washington is an American actress best known as the wife of Oscar-winning actor, director and producer Denzel Washington. Still, Pauletta Washington has been known as her husband’s wife for nearly 40 years. Denzel Washington’s wife, Denzel Washington’s Pauletta Washington, has been quietly working with Pauletta Washington in show business in recent years, and is now working on a film featuring Grammy winner Jennifer Hader Get ready for a new movie starring Sen. Award-winning singer Jennifer Hudson.

Denzel Washington

Award-winning actor Denzel Washington and his wife Pauletta married on June 25, 1983; this was after she turned down a marriage proposal twice. Pauletta met actor Denzel Washington in 1977; they both spent time together and eventually married on June 25, 1983 after six years of dating. The couple met the Oscar-winning Little Things star on the set of the TV movie Wilma in 1977 and married soon after.


They actually met on the set of Denzel Wilma’s 1977 TV movie. Prior to their 10-year marriage, Paulette Washington appeared in several small roles. Confirming that Denzel and Pauletta Washington met on the set of the film, Pauletta attended a party of a mutual friend of Pauletta and Denzels who was also present on the film’s set. Denzel and his lover began dating in the late 1970s after working together on the 1975 television biopic Wilma, in which Denzel played Olympian husband Wilma Rudolph and Pauletta played a track and field star. Her lover also told Oprah at a meeting in Washington in 1996, “Our mutual friend, who also starred in the 1975 television biopic Wilma, was having a party.

Jimmy Kimmel

Denzel once told Jimmy Kimmel on live television that his lover had to pay for a taxi ride on their first date in Washington because he ran out of money.


Her future husband, Denzel, once told Jimmy Kimmel’s live host that he had made three proposals to Paulette and, after refusing twice, agreed a third time. Pauletta first admitted that while Denzel attracted her to her appearance, her personality attracted her.


Denzel thanks Pauletta for helping keep the family strong, and she says the same about her. Denzel credits his wife for keeping the marriage afloat through the ups and downs of life in the spotlight. Denzel Washington and his wife Pauletta have been married for almost four decades, which is unfortunately a rarity for Hollywood couples.


Two foursomes and still in love like never before, his wife Pauletta Pearson’s relationship is pretty much the end game. The couple’s son John David Washington, his son, has been delighting fans with his apparently beloved red carpet photos for decades. Denzel Washington and his wife Pauletta Washington welcomed their son John David Washington, daughter Katya Washington and twins Malcolm and Olivia Washington during their marriage and the four children have become quite impressive personalities.


Her lover was born in Newton, North Carolina on September 28, 1950, and she grew up with her sister, actress Rita Pearson. It is well known that his sister Rita Pearson is also an actress. In 1970, the gorgeous Pauletta Pearson became the first black woman to compete in the Miss North pageant. Pauletta Pearson Washington is a graduate of the North Carolina Institute of the Arts and is a classically trained pianist and singer. Pauletta Washington is also known for his major contributions as a producer and actor in Philadelphia (1993), Antoine Fisher and 1995 in A Tales for Every Child.

Acting Career

Pauletta started her acting career after raising twins. In 1988, starred in the movie “Amata”. Pauletta is also best known for her role as Terry Angelou on the comedy TV series The Parkers, where she starred for two years from 2002 to 2004. Before she got married, she had many small roles on the small and big screen. .

Wendy Williams

In 2011, on The Wendy Williams Show, her significant other shared that she considers herself more of a musician than an actress. As Oscar winner Denzel Washington explained in a live interview with Kelly and Ryan, he met a young Pauletta Pearson on set but didn’t “get to know” her until a year later, when they both attended the same party. The couple met on the set of the TV movie “Wilma” in 1977, and actor Denzel Washington admitted in 2013 that he had proposed more than once because his wife had repeatedly rejected him. Before the couple married in 1983, Washington proposed not once, not twice, but three times, until colleague Paulette Pearson agreed.


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