Kim Fields loves her job, but there is one thing most of her sitcom roles have in common that she wasn’t a fan of: being a roommate.
Fields, who’s been a part of the acting industry since the early ’80s, is best known for her breakout role in “Facts of Life” and went on to play Regine in “Living Single.” In those roles she never had a place of her own.
“Can I please get a show where I have my own house?” she facetiously asked while discussing her new show “The Upshaws” where she will finally have a house that she can call her own. She told Netflix Queue — the streaming giant’s house magazine — in a recent interview, “All I knew was being the roommate for 14 years of sitcom television!” Although her new character, Regina Upshaw, will have her own house, there is a catch: it’s crowded.
Regina Upshaw lives in an Indianapolis home with her husband Bennie Upshaw, who is played by Mike Epps, and has three children, an adult son and two younger daughters. Bennie has one teenage son whose mother is being played by “A Black Lady’s Sketch Show” actress Gabrielle Dennis. However, to Fields, her character still feels like something new. She said, “even though Regina Upshaw is in a sitcom, the tone of the show, the tone of the character, still felt like uncharted waters. As soon as they sent me the script, I gravitated toward the project.”
In addition to that, Fields said that her character in this new Netflix series is “definitely up there with some of my top roles.” The 52-year-old also credited the show for its realism. “The perfectly imbalanced balance that is life is so well represented. The show is such a mirror, and very much the way that Norman Lear shows were done. It has a very relevant and refreshing take on that type of storytelling,” she said. Norman Lear is the creator of shows like “Good Times,” “The Jeffersons,” “Sanford and Son,” etc.
She also praised Regina Hicks and Wanda Sykes, who were the creators of the show, and the show’s writers. The seasoned actress said, “That writers room is its own lightning in a bottle. They hit it out the park each and every episode with Regina Hicks and Wanda Sykes at the helm.” She continued, “Every one of them, they pay attention to life, and that’s what really resonates. Even though there’s the rhythm of a sitcom, it doesn’t feel like setup, joke, one-liner, one-liner, one-liner. It really has that sense of incredible reality.”
“The Upshaws” premiered on Netflix this month on May 12.