Taraji P. Henson says “Empire” and social media “wrecked” her personal life

“Empire” star Taraji P. Henson isn’t pleased with the effect social media has had on her life. 

Henson sat down with Ryan Reynolds for an “Actors on Actors” chat -- hosted by Variety -- during which the “Deadpool” star extolled the ease and effectiveness of social media. 

But for Emmy-winner Henson, whose profile rose dramatically after signing on to play Cookie Lyon on the music industry drama “Empire,” the transition into being a celebrity in public and online hasn’t been so smooth.

“You’re walking down the street and they’re just like, ‘Hey Cookie,’” she recounted. “Maybe I didn’t want the world to see how I looked today, maybe I wore these sweats yesterday.” 

While Reynolds tried to justify it as the cost of life in the public eye, Henson was adamant she’d felt a distinct change -- one that she’d not entirely comfortable with. 

“It was fine until Cookie came. I was OK under the radar, I could go to Target,” she said. “I never saw that coming. I go from this normal life to having to find a house on a private gated road, it’s crazy.”