When Emmy and Oscar-winning actress Regina King visited Deadline’s New Hollywood Podcast, we learned a lot of behind-the-scenes intel about her feature directorial debut One Night In Miami, which has become an awards season frontrunner for King as well as the cast. In addition to that, we got to learn a lot about the trailblazing actor and filmmaker.
For one, we learned that as a child, King used to perform her live plays with her sister in their backyard, she once had career aspirations to be a dentist and, to this day, she loves to people watch — which is part of the reason why she is a great performer.
King broke into the industry playing Brenda on the iconic sitcom 227 (which I tend to bring up a lot during the podcast) and went on to help sculpt Black cinema in the ’90s with groundbreaking films that included Boyz N the Hood and Poetic Justice from the late, great John Singleton as well as the comedy Friday.
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She instantly began showing her range as actor, appearing in movies Jerry Maguire, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Enemy of the State, Ray, Miss Congeniality 2, and Barry Jenkins’ striking adaptation of James Baldwin’s If Beale Street Could Talk — which won her an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress.
King also slayed the TV game, appearing in numerous TV shows and winning two Emmys for her role in the ABC anthology Seven Seconds and nabbed a trophy for the Netflix miniseries Seven Seconds. She also made audiences jaws drop with her turn as Sister Night in Damon Lindelof’s incredible take on the award-winning graphic novel Watchmen…and yes, she earned a Emmy for that role too. On top of that, she’s directed episodes of Being Mary Jane, Scandal, This Is Us, The Good Doctor and Insecure.
Now, with One Night In Miami, King stretches her artist muscles behind the camera. The adaptation of the Kemp Powers’ play of the same name which is a fictionalized meeting of icons Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali, Jim Brown, and Sam Cooke in the 1960s. The film made history at the Venice Film Festival as the first film to be selected for the fest directed by a Black woman.
Listen to the episode below as King talks about why she decided to make One Night In Miami her feature directorial debut, her career journey and if we will ever see a 227 reunion.
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