Octavia Spencer portrays Madame C.J. Walker, America’s first self-made female millionaire, in the new Netflix series Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madame C.J. Walker. The four-part limited series hits the platform on March 20th.
As seen in the trailer released on Tuesday, Walker notably became an entrepreneur in the early 20th century thanks to her innovative products marketing to black hair; like many black women of the time period, she herself had suffered from severe dandruff and baldness while working as a laundress in St. Louis. Walker’s cosmetics line was one of the first in the U.S. to be specifically created for black hair, and in addition to her budding business, she worked as an activist and took on philanthropic projects that benefited black communities.
“From now on, I’m doing my hair, making my own hair grower,” Walker tells her husband in the trailer as she whips up the first batch of what will become her fortune-making hair solution.
Spencer is joined in the series by Tiffany Haddish, who portrays Walker’s daughter Leila, and Blaire Underwood, who plays Walker’s husband. Carmen Ajogo will play a supporting role as Addie Monroe, a fictional business rival to Walker.
Self Made is co-produced by LeBron James, and co-directed by filmmaker Kasi Lemmons (Eve’s Bayou, Harriet) and Queen Sugar producer DeMane Davis. Spencer also co-produced the series.