Tina Lifford is an American actress and playwright. She is best known for her leading role as single mother Joan Mosley in the critically acclaimed but short-lived Fox comedy-drama series, South Central (1994), and her recurring role as Renee Trussell in the NBC drama series, Parenthood (2010-2015). She has starring roles in the feature films Grand Canyon (1991), Blood Work (2002), and Hostage (2005). In 2016, Lifford began starring as Violet Bordelon (Aunt Vi) in the Oprah Winfrey Network drama series, Queen Sugar.
Life and career
Lifford graduated from the University of Santa Monica. She began her career in 1980s, appearing on television shows include Hill Street Blues, Cagney & Lacey, and Murder, She Wrote. From 1983 to 1988, she had the recurring role on Knots Landing. In film, she made her debut in The Ladies Club (1986). The following years, she had appeared in films include Nuts (1987), Colors (1988), Paris Trout (1991), Grand Canyon (1991), Letters from a Killer (1998), Panic (2000), Pay It Forward (2000), Joe Somebody (2001), Blood Work (2002), Hostage (2005), and Catch and Release (2006).
Lifford played the leading role as single mother Joan Mosley in the critically acclaimed but short-lived Fox comedy-drama series, South Central (1994). In addition to her leading role on South Central, Lifford was regular cast member on the short-lived NBC drama, Crisis Center (1997). She had number of starring roles on the made-for-television movies, include The Ernest Green Story (1993), Run for the Dream: The Gail Devers Story (1996) playing Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Mandela and de Klerk (1997) as Winnie Mandela, The Temptations (1998), and The Loretta Claiborne Story (2000) starring Kimberly Elise.
During her career, Lifford had guest starring roles in over 50 shows, include Touched by an Angel, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Any Day Now, NYPD Blue, NCIS, ER, and Nip/Tuck. She also had the recurring roles on Family Law (1999-2001), CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2004-2005), Lincoln Heights (2007-2009), Parenthood (2010-2015) as Joy Bryant‘s mother, and Scandal (2015).
In 2016, Lifford was cast in her first series regular role as of 1990s, in the Oprah Winfrey Network drama Queen Sugar produced by Ava DuVernay and Oprah Winfrey. She plays the role of Violet Bordelon, the aunt to the Bordelon siblings (Rutina Wesley, Kofi Siriboe and Dawn-Lyen Gardner), a spunky woman involved in a long-term relationship with the younger men (playing by Omar Dorsey).
|1984||Why Me?||Television film|
|1986||The Ladies Club||Patty|
|1987||Jaws: The Revenge||Additional Voices||Voice|
|1988||Casual Sex?||Additional Voices||Voice|
|1989||The Fabulous Baker Boys||Background Voice||Voice|
|1991||New Jack City||Recovering Addict|
|1991||Paris Trout||Mary Sayers|
|1991||The Rape of Doctor Willis||Officer Rollins||Television film|
|1993||The Ernest Green Story||Mrs. Green||Television film|
|1993||Born Too Soon||Latanya||Television film|
|1994||In the Line of Duty: The Price of Vengeance||Jean||Television film|
|1995||A Streetcar Named Desire||The Neighbor||Television film|
|1996||America’s Dream||Sarah||Television film
Nominated — CableACE Award for Best Actress in a Dramatic Special or Series
|1996||Run for the Dream: The Gail Devers Story||Jackie Joyner-Kersee||Television film|
|1996||After Jimmy||Susan Johnson||Television film|
|1996||The Longest Season||Employment Counselor||Short film|
|1997||Mandela and de Klerk||Winnie Mandela||Television film|
|1997||Cloned||Claire Barnes||Television film|
|1998||Letters from a Killer||Elizabeth|
|1998||The Temptations||Haze||Television film|
|2000||The Loretta Claiborne Story||Rita Claiborne||Television film|
|2000||The ’70s||Aunt Olavee||Television film|
|2000||Pay It Forward||Principal|
|2001||A Girl Thing||Sharon||Television film|
|2001||Amy’s Orgasm||Irene Barris|
|2001||Joe Somebody||Cassandra Taylor|
|2002||Blood Work||Detective Jaye Winston|
|2005||Mystery Woman: Sing Me a Murder||Bonnie||Television film|
|2005||Urban Legends: Bloody Mary||Grace Taylor|
|2006||Mystery Woman: Redemption||Bonnie||Television film|
|2006||Catch and Release||Eve|
|2010||The Ties That Bind||Karen White||Short film|
|2016||Worry Dolls AKA The Devil’s Dolls||Della|