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Why Lela Rochon Threw Away the Script for ‘The Help’  

“I wasn’t a fan of the idea of playing a maid.”  

Lela Rochon, most notably known for her breakout role alongside the late, great Whitney Houston in Waiting to Exhale, happily chose to take a slower pace in her career to focus on family. However, the actress admits that there are projects she “probably should have done just to say relevant.”


In her upcoming episode of Oprah: Where Are They Now?Rochon shares what might have been missed opportunities.


Lela Rochan on ‘Waiting to Exhale’ Sequel


“I didn’t go in and read or pursue The Help,” Rochon says. “I actually threw the script in the trash can.”

“I didn’t read the book. I wasn’t a fan of the idea of playing a maid,” she says. “I didn’t really get it. I was like, ‘eh ok, I’m not really interested in that.'”


That script turned into an award-winning film. In her defense, it’s sometimes difficult to determine how a script will translate onscreen.


“Sometimes you read a script and you just don’t know what it’s going to be,” Rochon explains. “I remember reading The Matrix — it’s techno-babble, it’s scientific, I don’t even understand what I’m reading.”

“It was huge. The Matrix. Huge!” Rochon says. “Who knew?”


See a clip of her interview here.