Gabourey Sidibe (/ˈɡæbəˌreɪ ˈsɪdɪˌbeɪ/ GAB-ə-ray SID-i-bay; born May 6, 1983) is an American actress. Sidibe made her acting debut in the 2009 film Precious, a role that earned her the Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead in addition to nominations for the Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Actress. Her other film roles include Tower Heist (2011), White Bird in a Blizzard (2014), and Grimsby (2016).
From 2010 to 2013, she was a main cast member of the Showtime series The Big C. Sidibe co-starred on the television series American Horror Story: Coven as Queenie and American Horror Story: Freak Show as Regina Ross, and later reprised her role as Queenie in American Horror Story: Hotel. Since 2015, she stars in the Fox musical drama series Empire as Becky Williams.
Sidibe was born in Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York, and was raised in Harlem. Her mother, Alice Tan Ridley, is an American R&B and gospel singer who appeared on the fifth season of America's Got Talent, on June 15, 2010. Her father, Ibnou Sidibe, is from Senegal and is a cab driver. Growing up, Sidibe lived with her aunt, the noted feminist activist Dorothy Pitman Hughes. She holds an associate's degree from Borough of Manhattan Community College, and attended but did not graduate from City College of New York and Mercy College. She worked at The Fresh Air Fund's office as a receptionist before she went on to pursue a career in acting.