By 1916, as Madam Walker herself was developing more assertive views on race, she was becoming eager to assume her place alongside Harlem's famous, influential and intriguing residents.
To her credit, Madam Walker discerned that black women wanted to conform to white Victorian models of beauty. She was aware of the double- sidedness of her products - helping black women appear more European in look, with straight hair - but she always maintained that she was simply selling products that promoted hair growth.
So Madam C.J. Walker's Wonderful Hair Grower, when applied after shampooing the hair more frequently, allowed women's scalp to be healthier and their hair to grow back. That was her most popular product.
I hope that people will be inspired by Madam Walker's story. I hope that they will see her as a complex human being, and that they will want to dig more deeply, that they will want to know the details of her life.
Madame Walker selected Indianapolis as the headquarters for her growing business more than a century ago in 1910 because of its central location and thriving black business community.
For more than three years, I'd been part of a complex and frustrating dance as my nonfiction, fact-based material was translated from book to movie by scriptwriters whose visions, goals and sensibilities often were quite different from mine.
As handbags get ever more absurdly large, so they need to carry more stuff to validate the expense of this huge trunk with chains, buckles and padlocks on.
The super-rich watch each other like envious owls, to see who's got a slightly better loafer, a pullover made from some even more absurdly endangered fur. They will go to any lengths to find the best tailors.
The one thing politicians will always vote for is more politics, so in 2000 they invented the post of mayor of London without ever really thinking what it was a mayor would do.
The more there is on offer, the more you don't want. Fifty options of cereal does not hone an epicurean expertise in the finer points of puffed rice, it murders appetite.