After generating headlines for bashing this week’s “Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air” reunion, former cast member Janet Hubert is telling her side of the story.
The Internet went wild after Alfonso Ribeiro shared an Instagram photo alongside his former cast members, including Will Smith, Tatyana Ali and Daphne Maxwell-Reid, who replaced Hubert in the role of Aunt Viv after she was fired from the sitcom in 1993. In a since-deleted Facebook post, Hubert wrote, “There will never be a true reunion of the ‘Fresh Prince’. I have no interest in seeing any of these people on that kind of level.”
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Now, in a new interview with ET Canada, the actress explains that the post felt like a direct hit towards her.
“It was the way it was worded,” she says. “When Alfonso [Ribeiro] said, ‘The only person that would make it complete would be James Avery,’ and of course the media jumped on it, I started getting messages and I started seeing all kinds of commentary.”
She continues, “It was inflammatory and it was throwing shade, and that’s why everybody picked it up the way they did. If it was simply a photograph, it would have been fine.”
Hubert has had a long-standing feud with Smith in particular, dating back to her 1993 dismissal from the sitcom, which she has long claimed her former co-star played a role in. The conflict was reignited last year amid the #OscarsSoWhite controversy, when Jada Pinkett-Smith boycotted the Academy Awards after husband Will was snubbed for his role in “Concussion”.
“There’s a lot of sh*t going on in the world that you all don’t seem to recognize,” Hubert said at the time in a Facebook video directed at Pinkett-Smith. “People are dying. Our boys are being shot left and right. People are starving. People are trying to pay bills. And you’re talking about some f***ing actors and Oscars. It just ain’t that deep.”
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Today, it seems the actress still bears the same sentiments, saying, “We’re not talking about royalty here. We’re talking about a freaking rapper-turned-actor.”