She won the Golden Globe Award as Best Actress in a Supporting Role.
In addition, she has been named Best Supporting Actress by the Broadcast Film Critics Association and also by the Screen Actors Guild.
Her debut album Jennifer Hudson, released in 2008, debuted at number two on the Billboard 200 and was certified gold by the RIAA, with sales exceeding a million copies worldwide.
She was released from her five-year contract with Righteous Records so that she could appear on American Idol in 2004.
"Love You I Do" was nominated for the 2007 Academy Award for Best Original Song and won the 2008 Grammy Award for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media.
As Effie White, Hudson has garnered 29 awards from film critics as Best Supporting Actress and Breakthrough Performer of 2006.
Hudson auditioned for the third season of American Idol in Atlanta commenting that she had been singing on Disney Cruise Lines (aboard the Disney Wonder) for the past few months (as one of the Muses from Hercules); and contestant judge Randy Jackson said, "We're expecting more than a cruise ship performance from you." Hudson received the highest number of votes in the "Top 9" after her performance of Elton John's "Circle of Life" on April 6, 2004, but two weeks later was eliminated during the "Top 7" show after performing Barry Manilow's, "Weekend in New England." The bottom three consisting of three African-American females led to controversy.
In May 2010, the Los Angeles Times claimed Hudson to be the third greatest Idol contestant in the history of the show, placing behind season one winner Kelly Clarkson and season four winner Carrie Underwood.
She rose to fame in 2004 as a finalist on the third season of American Idol, coming in seventh place.