Who is Telma Hopkins?

Telma Louise Hopkins was born in Louisville, Kentucky USA, on 28 October 1948 – her zodiac sign is Scorpio, and she holds American nationality. She’s an actress, film producer and singer, with more than 60 acting credits to her name, while she’s perhaps still known best for her portrayal of Rachel Crawford in the adventure comedy series “Family Matters”, created by William Bickley and Robert L. Boyett, and which starred Reginald VelJohnson, Jaleel White and Kellie Shanygne Williams. It follows members of the Wislow family, the series aired from 1989 to 1998, and won nine of the 27 awards for which it was nominated.

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Early life and education

Telma was raised in Highland Park, Michigan alongside her sister Teresa, by their parents about whom not a lot is known, as she respects their privacy; it’s believed that her father was a musician, and her mother a housewife.

She grew up being interested in music rather than in acting, and began taking singing lessons at the age of 13. Telma studied at Highland Park Community High School and was involved in many activities during her four years there, such as dancing, singing and acting.

Upon matriculating in 1967, she chose not to pursue a college degree, but to try and make a name for herself in the music industry.

Career as a singer

Telma moved to Detroit, Michigan aged 18 and began working as a background singer; her voice could’ve been heard in many hit songs, including Isaac Hayes’ “Theme from Shaft” and Freda Payne’s “Band of Gold”, while she also worked with Marvin Gaye and The Four Tops.

Telma, American singer Joyce Vincent Wilson and American pop singer Tony Orlando were founding members of the pop music group Tony Orlando and Dawn in 1970, and they became popular in the second half of the ‘70s, when they released close to 20 songs which became hits, with three of these peaking at #1 on the charts. Between 1974 and 1976, they starred in their own eponymous CBS show, then disbanded in the following year.

Roles in TV series

Telma made her debut TV series appearance in the 1979 episode “Part VI (1939-1950)” of the hit biographical drama “Roots: The Next Generations”, while she gained recognition in 1980, when cast to play Isabelle Hammond in the comedy “Bosom Buddies”. It was created by Chris Thompson and Robert L. Boyett, starred Tom Hanks, Peter Scolari and Donna Dixon, and follows two men who’ve disguised themselves as women so that they would be allowed to live in the only apartment which they can afford; the series aired from 1980 to 1982.

The remainder of the ‘80s saw Telma appear in an episode or two of many popular series, such as the comedy “The New Odd Couple”, the adventure comedy drama “Fantasy Island”, and the romantic comedy drama “The Love Boat”. Between 1983 and 1987, she starred as Addy Wilson in the popular comedy “Gimme a Break!”; created by Sy Rosen and Mort Lachman, it also starred Nell Carter and Lara Jill Miller, and tells the story of Nell who’s become widowed police chief Carl’s housekeeper; the series was nominated for 16 awards, including two Primetime Emmys.

Telma mostly had guest roles in the ‘90s, in series such as the comedy “It’s Gary Shandling’s Show”, another comedy “Women of the House”, and the romantic drama “ER”.

What marked the 2000s for her was probably her portrayal of Phyllis Thorne in the hit comedy “Half & Half”, created by Jeffrey Klarik, and which starred Essence Atkins, Rachel True and Chico Benymon. The series follows half-sisters Dee Dee and Mona who didn’t know about each other when they were little, while they’re now living under the same roof; it aired from 2002 to 2006 and won one of the 19 awards for which it was nominated.

Three of Telma’s most recent roles in TV series have been in the 2022 episode “Captain Susie/Bringing Up Daisy” of the short animated adventure “Rugrats” (voice role), 25 episodes of the short animated adventure “The Casagrandes” since 2019 (voice role), and 10 episodes of the comedy “Family Reunion” also since 2019; she’s currently shooting for the upcoming comedy “Dangerous Moms”.

Roles in movies

Telma made her debut film appearance in the 1979 comedy “Marie”, while a couple of her following roles were in the 1982 family fantasy comedy “The Kid with the Broken Halo”, the 1984 action science fiction “Trancers”, and the 1988 short science fiction “Trancers: City of Los Angeles”.

She gained recognition in 1991, with her portrayal of Commander Raines in the action horror science fiction “Trancers II”, written and directed by Charles Band, and which starred Tim Thomerson, Helen Hunt and Megan Ward. It follows a police officer who can travel through time, and who now has to fight alien zombies created by a mad scientist. Telma appeared in only two movies in the remainder of the ‘90s: the 1994 family comedy drama “Count on Me”, and the 1999 romantic comedy drama “The Wood”.

Similar to the ‘90s, the 2000s saw her appear in only two films: the 2001 fantasy comedy “Down to Earth”, and the 2008 romantic sports comedy “The Love Guru”.

Three of her most recent film roles have been in the 2019 romantic comedy drama “Christmas Hotel”, and in 2021 the family comedy drama “Blending Christmas” and the action science fiction “The Matrix Resurrections”.

Other credits

Telma produced the 2019 comedy movie “Misfits”.

She’s sung songs in eight movies and TV series, including the 1981 series “Gimme a Break!”, the 1990 movie “How to Murder a Millionaire”, and the 2019 episode “I’ve Gotta Get Away” of the series “Dead to Me”.

Telma’s been featured in many documentaries, including the 2003 TV special “ABC’s 50th Anniversary Celebration”, the 2004 movie “Straight from the Heart: Timeless Music of the 60’s & 70’s”, and the 2021 film “ICONversation”.

She’s made a guest appearance in many talk-shows, such as “LA Live the Show”, “Entertainment Tonight” and “Celebrity Page”.

Awards and nominations

Telma’s won one of the six awards for which she’s been nominated: a 2005 BET Comedy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series, for her performance in “Half & Half”.

Love life and relationships

Telma prefers to keep the details of her love life to herself, but it’s still widely known that she was married, as well as that she’s dated a couple of men. She married non-celebrity American man Donald B. Allen in 1970, and they have a son together; the two divorced in 1977.

Telma dated former American Football Player Jim Brown in 1975, and then American actor Avelio Falana in the following year. The year 1980 saw her date Robert Guillaume, the late American actor and singer, and in 1993, Telma dated American actor Michael Dorn.

Most recently, in 2007, she was engaged to Rif Hutton, an American actor.

As of August 2022, Telma seems to be single, was once married to Donald B. Allen, and they have a son together.

Because #FamilyMatters, join us in wishing legendary singer & actress Telma Hopkins a blessed Happy 72nd Birthday 🎂 #SHMSBirthdays

Posted by Steve Harvey FM on Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Hobbies and other interests

Telma’s quite active on Instagram and has amassed over 30,000 followers, while she’s uploaded nearly 100 pictures onto the network, most of which feature her spending time with her family and friends.

Although she nowadays prefers to stay at her home in Louisville, Telma was once passionate about travelling, and has been around the world for both work and pleasure; her dream travel destination’s Paris, France.

She’s a philanthropist, and has volunteered with various charity organizations, mostly with Caring for Babies with AIDS, the Parent-Teacher-Friend Association (PTA), and Act on Arthritis.

Telma has her own favorite actors and actresses, some of whom are Meryl Streep, Al Pacino and Clint Eastwood, while a couple of her favorite movies are “Kramer vs. Kramer”, “Scent of a Woman” and “Gran Torino”.

Age, height and net worth

Telma’s age is 73. She has long brown hair and brown eyes, her height is 5ft 7ins (1.7m) and she weighs around 145lbs (65kgs).

As of August 2022, her net worth’s been estimated at more than $3 million.

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