Back in 2018, Regina King participated into the docu-series “Who Do You Think You Are?” to learn more about her genealogy. Here are screencaptures.
Unfortunately it looks like the episode isn’t present online to stream but it might be in the future.
Power Women Summit 2020: Oscar and Emmy winner talks about finding vulnerability in four iconic Black men and how John Singleton helped her on the path to becoming a director.
There has been no stopping Regina King. After winning an Oscar for “If Beale Street Could Talk” and an Emmy for “Watchmen,” the actress has found herself back in contention for another Academy Award — this time for Best Director.
At the 2020 Power Women Summit on Wednesday, King spoke with TheWrap’s Steve Pond for the Spotlight Conversation presented by Cadillac. King discussed her upcoming directorial debut “One Night In Miami,” which is based on Kemp Powers’ acclaimed play of the same name. Set in 1964, the film tells of a fictional encounter between Muhammad Ali — then known as Cassius Clay — Malcolm X, Sam Cooke and Jim Brown in a Miami hotel room after Ali’s first heavyweight title victory over Sonny Liston. With all four men still on the rise toward superstardom, they have a life-changing and intimate discussion about what it means to be famous Black men in a country that discriminates against them… and what they could do to change that.
“There were so many things about [the screenplay] that spoke to me just as a Black woman… getting to see Black men have a private discussion publicly and to see men so layered,” King said. “Kemp Powers’ dialogue is so unfortunately prescient. The conversations that are happening in this film are happening in 1960, in 1950 and happening now.”
Pond pointed out the irony that King, who vowed in her 2019 Golden Globe acceptance speech to ensure that “everything I produce is 50% women,” is making her feature debut on a film about four of the most famous Black men of the 20th century. But King noted that “One Night In Miami” is a story that depicts something modern masculinity doesn’t always allow: vulnerability.
“There’s a certain amount of vulnerability that men have that all of these men show in this piece,” King said. “I feel like I was sensitive to it. I saw it immediately. I understood Kemp’s desire and vision to depict Black men the way he sees himself, in his likeness. I just felt like having that sensitivity made me the perfect candidate to direct.”
Though “Beale Street” and “Watchmen” propelled King’s career to a new level, it’s been a long road to get to where she is now. One key figure in her career was John Singleton, whom she worked with on three films, including “Boyz n the Hood.” King recalled how the director wanted her to appear in his follow-up to “Boyz,” the 1993 film “Poetic Justice,” but told her she would still have to audition for the role. That audition, King said, taught her about the value of having a work ethic and fighting for the roles she wanted most.
“Once I got that role, John really opened up his whole process for me as a director,” she recalled. “And that’s when I really started getting a clearer understanding of what a director does, because my experience up until that point was just the relationship between a director and an actor. And while I wasn’t consciously realizing in that moment that one day I will direct, I think the seed was planted and he was starting to water it.”
“One Night in Miami” will have a limited release in theaters on Christmas Day and will be released on Amazon Prime on Jan. 15.
The gallery was updated with HQ scans of Regina King from the PEOPLE magazine issue of December 14, 2020. Take a look and enjoy!
For three decades, Academy Award–winning actor Regina King has captivated audiences on screen. Now, with her feature directorial debut, ‘One Night in Miami,’ she takes on a defining new role.
One day this past spring, Regina King began carving out a roughly 5-by-20-foot plot of soil behind her home in Los Angeles to plant some seeds. She got the idea from a friend, fellow actor Anthony Anderson, who’d shown her pictures of his meticulously cultivated garden and thus inspired her to start her own. It’s a pastime that requires patience. But this was in the throes of collective isolation, when everyone frantically sought out hobbies, and there was time to sit and watch grass grow.
Every day, in between binge-watching shows like Ozark and Kim’s Convenience, King, 49, would tend to her crops, the reward for which was three yields of several types of kale, as well as tomatoes, jalapeño and serrano peppers and onions—ingredients she used to make large amounts of salsa. Now that she’s tried her hand at horticulture—a suitable end-of-the-world skill—her new fantasy is to purchase two or three acres of property, she says: “Just enough for me to live off the land.”
After three-plus decades on-screen, King had her breakthrough lead role, in 2019’s Watchmen; and this year she directed her first feature film, One Night in Miami, an adaptation of playwright Kemp Powers’s 2013 stage imagining of conversations between four Black legends. Now, after years of momentum, an expansive body of work in film and television as an actor, director and producer, and numerous awards, she is regarded as one of Hollywood’s most dynamic creators.
As an actress, Regina King has had an exceedingly busy couple of years. After an Oscar win for If Beale Street Could Talk in 2019, King won an Emmy for The Watchmen in September, and her film directorial debut, One Night in Miami — the first by a Black female director to be selected by the Venice Film Festival — premieres Dec. 25.
“I feel like this is the path I was supposed to be on,” says King, 49, one of PEOPLE Magazine’s People of the Year.
“I don’t necessarily see it as a renewed purpose. But I have a little more power now, in my choices, and in my ability to amplify a message,” she tells PEOPLE. “I have things I’m very passionate about. And I feel very lucky to be able to use my art and my voice collectively.”
Indeed, in addition to her powerful roles in front of and behind the camera (One Night in Miami is about a fictionalized meeting between Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Sam Cooke and Jim Brown in 1964), King has spoken out about the importance of voting, especially when it comes to marginalized communities, and been vocal about her dismay at the division in the country.
“I don’t think that we would be at this reckoning that we are right now if the world wasn’t on pause [due to the pandemic],” says King. “We’re more sensitive to everything around us. And I have to believe that however far down the line we’ll be on the other side of this, we will be forced to consider other people’s differences.”
King made a pointed statement about the civil injustices on Emmy night, when she wore a shirt featuring the image of Breonna Taylor. “I had the opportunity to not wear a gown and … a chance to visually show why it’s so important to vote down the ballot,” she says. “How could I not use it?”
Moving forward, King, who says she doesn’t identify as a Republican or a Democrat (“I have a problem with sides,” she shares), the actress and activist says she remains cautiously optimistic about the future.
“I do believe in the good of humanity,” says King. “And I want us to be on the other side of us coming together as humankind. But we cannot become complacent. We still have to fight. We’re going to get more scraped knuckles and skinned knees. But after those wounds heal, we’ll have the beauty in the bruises.”
==== Check also the video interview excerpt from Regina’s cover in our video vault.