The cast of ABC’s Family Matters recently staged a reunion of sorts for a special photo shoot with Entertainment Weekly, but one cast member was glaringly absent from the pages of the magazine.
Actress Jamiee Foxworth, who portrayed the youngest Winslow sibling Judy following the debut episode in 1989 (another child star played Judy in the series’ pilot episode), was notoriously phased out after the show’s fourth season in 1993, never to be seen or heard from again.
In the years since, the now 37-year-old Foxworth appeared in an adult film production that marred her once-innocent filmography, but she has never been forgotten by fans of Family Matters as an original cast mate, which made her omission from the Entertainment Weekly reunion all the more puzzling.
Speaking to The Root recently, Foxworth expressed that her participation in the XXX-rated production may have been the reason for Entertainment Weekly not offering her an invite to the Family Matters reunion, but states that she is not the first nor the last television star to loan her presence to the more mature setting of adult film entertainment.
“I was not invited at all,” Foxworth told The Root.
“I wasn’t even contacted. [Actor] Shawn [Harrison, who portrayed Winslow friend Waldo Geraldo Faldo] sent me a text two days before [the EW issue] was released. He asked if anyone contacted me, and he just wanted to let me know that EW contacted them to do a reunion cover. And he just didn’t want me to be shocked when it came out.”
As for her sudden departure from Family Matters following Season 4, Jaimee told writers of The Root that she had a bad feeling even as a child that things were about to change for the worse, calling her contested dismissal — actress Jo Marie Payton, who played the original matriarch of the Winslow clan, Harriet, reportedly fought hard to keep her TV daughter on-board, to no avail — a move that darkly affected her not just as a young actress, but as a human being.
“As Season 4 came to an end,” The Root notes, “Foxworth definitely got the feeling that things were about to change. She said that her TV dad came up to her and told her she was a great actress and a beautiful girl. And then came the hiatus, which she noticed was longer than usual for her, and her [birth] mother finally explained to her what had happened.”
“It affected my self-esteem as an actress,” she admits, “and I started feeling like I wasn’t good at my job.”
Despite being cut out twice from her TV family, Foxworth simply wishes that EW would’ve done the right thing by giving her a call to join the Family Matters reunion shoot.
“You can’t let people trample all over you. At some point you have to speak out. And let people know some things are not OK. I had to speak out and say something,” Foxworth claimed.
Also missing from the Family Matters reunion photo shoot, albeit for more sad reasons, were actresses Michelle Thomas (Myra) and Rosetta LeNoire (Mother Winslow), who passed away in 1998 and 2002, respectively.
[Featured Image by Warner Bros. Television Distribution]