Tatyana Ali on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' Reunion & 'Dope' Reboot
Tatyana Ali is dishing on the upcoming Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reunion special and her thoughts on co-star Will Smith’s reboot project. The stars of the ’90s comedy recently reunited for a 30th anniversary special set to debut on HBO Max.
“There’s a lot of surprises for us,” the 41-year-old actress teased while speaking with ET’s Kevin Frazier. “I know what I’m wearing.”
Ali was otherwise “sworn to secrecy” about the special, which features Smith, Karyn Parsons, Joseph Marcell, Daphne Maxwell Reid and Alfonso Ribeiro. It was filmed earlier in September and is set to air around Thanksgiving.
Last week, Smith shared photos of the reunion on social media, including a pic of him sitting down with the original Aunt Viv, Janet Hubert, who previously slammed him in the past. The pair were all smiles — and so was the rest of the cast.
Smith also has a Fresh Prince reboot in development, which has been picked up for two seasons by Peacock. The project will see the show reimagined into a drama.
“I think it’s brilliant,” Ali (who played Ashley on the series) said about the concept. “Flipping it and making it a drama is so dope. I think that’s part of this lasting power of the sitcom — it was based in real stuff.”
Ali was just 11 years old when ET first met on the set of the series while season one was filming in 1990. At the time, she shared her hopes that the show would run “forever.”
Sixteen set visits later, ET returned for the taping of the final ever episode in 1996, during which Smith described Ali as family.
“Tatyana is like a little sister to me,” Smith said. “It makes me uncomfortable seeing her sit on her boyfriend’s lap!”
Ali, meanwhile, reflected on what she had learned during her time on the show, saying, “I’m going to miss learning life lessons. Every kind of lesson you can imagine, I’ve learned on this set.”
Almost 25 years since that finale, Ali continues to act and produce. The mom of two’s next project is the faith-based film, The Reason, releasing on digital platforms and on DVD this fall.
Ali plays a doctor who witnesses a miracle in a young patient suffering from leukemia. The story of an ill child struck Ali harder, given she was pregnant at the time. She has two sons with husband Vaughn Rasberry — Edward, 4, and Alejandro, 1.
“I was pregnant while I was making this and it was very early in my pregnancy,” shared Ali. “I would ask my mom to come with me, to be there for the shooting because the material is so difficult, especially being a first-time mom.”
“I wanted to protect that space that you have as an expecting mom and the person who could help me do that is my mother,” she continued. “I knew that while I was going through the film, I would need mothering!”
Meanwhile, fans who can’t wait until Thanksgiving to see the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reunion can try and rent out the house where the series was filmed to mark its anniversary. See more below.
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