She Played Tootie on "The Facts of Life." See Kim Fields Now at 53.
The actor also starred in the groundbreaking sitcom, Living Single.
Kim Fields is best known to many who grew up in the 1970s and '80s as Dorothy "Tootie" Ramsey, her character on The Facts Of Life. (She also showed up as Tootie in the show The Facts of Life was spun-off from, Diff'rent Strokes.) While Tootie was 12 in the first season of The Facts of Life, Fields was just nine years old, meaning that she really was growing up onscreen. In 2021, the actor told People that being a child star is surreal, especially being on such a beloved series. "You don't realize, 'This show is groundbreaking,'" she said. "You're just grateful to show up to a job. I certainly didn't think that it was as monumental as it would go on to become. It was a different type of coming-of-age. And to do that in that environment was just really spectacular." It was a such a spectacular experience that Fields kept acting, going on to more iconic roles. Read on to learn more.
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She never stopped acting.
After The Facts of Life, Fields continued to work steadily, including taking on guest roles in hit series like Martin, 227, and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. She found sitcom success again as an adult in 1993, when she joined the main cast of Living Single, playing the vain, boy-crazy Regine Hunter. She also reprised the role in an episode of the short-lived series, The Crew.
And her career didn't stop there. Fields has appeared in episodes of shows including Kenan & Kel, The Drew Carey Show, The Comeback, and other popular primetime series in the late '90s and early '00s. In 2016, she was part of the main cast of The Real Housewives of Atlanta Season 8 but left after a rough fight with Kenya Moore. She competed on Season 22 of Dancing With the Stars. She's been in dozens of TV movies throughout her career and appeared as herself in the Facts of Life and Diff'rent Strokes episode of the special, Live in Front of a Studio Audience. She currently stars as Regina in the Netflix comedy, The Upshaws, which returns for a second season this year.
In addition to acting, Fields has also distinguished herself as a TV director. Her first behind-the-camera credits come from Living Single, but she also directed 27 episodes of Kenan & Kel and 39 episodes of Tyler Perry's House of Payne, among other shows.
She's still close with Janet Jackson.
Fields became friends with Janet Jackson when she played Charlene on Diff'rent Strokes, and they remain pals today. This month, Fields posted a video to Instagram of the two meeting up and embracing at this year's Essence Festival in New Orleans with the caption, "as if no time had passed." Her Living Single costar Erika Alexander and RHOA alum Cynthia Bailey were among the celebrities who commented on the post, cheering the lifelong friendship along.
She has thoughts about a Living Single reboot.
Although many iconic '90s shows have been rebooted, Fields doesn't think that Living Single should be one of them. She told Entertainment Tonight in 2020 that she and the cast have their own text thread and one that also includes show creator Yvette Lee Bowser where they talk about the possibility. "We keep saying the [text] thread really just needs to be the reboot," she told the outlet. But in all seriousness, she doesn't think a revival would ultimately honor the characters properly. "We recognize how valued the show is—not was, but is," she added. "You can't just run up and say, 'Well, let's just show where they would be now 20 years later, whatever it is, you know. It really is strategic and in creatively scientific terms of what these characters would be now and who they would be and what they would be. And what have they been through, and, you know, all of that."
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She's not planning a return to reality TV.
People also often ask Fields if she'd ever make a return to RHOA given how drama-packed her season was. Alas, that's not in the cards, according to her. It has nothing to do with her former co-stars, though. Fields told ET in 2021, "You know, it was one of those things where I celebrated my 40th anniversary in show business, and I thought, 'At this point, the mandate is, and continues to be, [asking myself] what haven't I done? I need new and uncharted waters. And I did that, so there's no need to do that again."
She's a mother of two.
Fields has been married twice. Her first marriage was to producer Jonathan Freeman, from 1995 until 2001. And in 2007, she married stage actor Christopher Morgan, with whom she's still together. The couple share two sons: Sebastian, born in 2007, and Quincy, born in 2013.