This Cutie Became A Household Name In The 90’s & Now Her Kids Follow In Her Footsteps

Posted On : June 19, 2017

Do you recognize this lil’ cutie patootie? This adorable princess was a popular actress that starred in a 90’s sitcom where she played a spoiled and air-headed rich kid with fabulous clothes along with a new street-smart cousin. Does the show ring a bell?

Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Princess

If you guessed Karyn Parsons, you guessed right. Parsons is known for her iconic role as Hillary Banks on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. It may come as a surprise but Karyn didn’t aspire to be an actress when she was a little girl as she had dreams of being a professional dancer. Tragically, her initial dreams eventually fell apart after she suffered a torn knee ligament while she was still in grade school. According to the Gazette Review, Parsons developed a new dream after watching a school production of Mrs. Warren’s Profession. While Karyn wasn’t on the stage, she had a desire to be and it didn’t take long for her to develop a passion for acting. Parsons’ passion was so strong for acting that she skipped college and went straight to show business.

After numerous auditions and small roles, Parsons received her big break when she was cast as Hilary Banks, one of the lead characters, in the NBC sitcom, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Despite the fact that the show has been off the air for nearly 2 decades, Parsons is still known to us as Hillary Banks. Parsons may have played the role of a ditzy air-head that loved to shop, however, she was quite the opposite in real life. After The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air ended in 1996, Parsons took on a new career that involved teaching children African-American history.

Meet Karyn Parson’s Multicultural Fam’

In 2003, Parsons married director Alexandre Rockwell and the couple had 2 children:  daughter Lana and son Nico. Upon becoming a parent, Parsons became to reflect on the responsibilities that come with parenting. She began to reflect on the importance of teaching her children about their culture. As a child, her mother told her Black history stories and gave her the idea of putting those stories in a children’s book. In 2004 Karyn started the production company Sweet Blackberry, and has written and produced animated films that teach children about Black History.

Karyn Parsonns with her family: husband, Alexandre Rockwell; their children, Nico and Lana

Because Karyn is married to a skilled film maker, it’s not a surprise that her children have decided to pursue acting careers. Last month, we shared how both of Parsons’ children starred in the 2013 movie,  Little Feet, that their dad co-starred in and directed as well. What’s even more exciting is that her 14 year-old daughter seems to have an interest in dance as well. Lana (pictured below with the wife of the late Boomerang/Annie actor, Geoffrey Holder) celebrated black ballerinas at the Dance Theater of Harlem. Wouldn’t that be amazing if Lana lived her mother’s dream and became a dancer?

Carmen DeLavallade and my lovely Lana at the Dance theater of Harlem, celebrating black ballerinas. Thank you Anna Glass!

A post shared by Karyn Parsons (@karynparsons) on

While dance may not be Lana’s passion, like her mother, she appears to be a talented actress that is serious about her craft. Lana starred in the film, That is Circling All Round the Sun, in 2016. She and her dad talked about their film together in the video below…

Even though Karyn seems to prefer the family life than living life on the red carpet, she still keeps in touch with her cast mates. The cast of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reunited in March of 2017 to support her organization, Sweet Berry. According to TMZ, Karyn Parsons along with Tatiana Ali, Alfonso Ribeiro, Will, Daphne Maxwell Reid and Joseph Marcell all came together at Nobu in Malibu. Karyn says her former cast mates ate dinner with a family from England that won a charity auction.

By the way, in case y’all didn’t know, Parsons is 50 and fabulous! Get it Karyn!

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