Wilmer Valderrama may reprise his role as Fez in Netflix’s upcoming spin-off of the beloved sitcom “That ’70s Show.”
Valderrama, 42, who currently stars on “NCIS” and recently landed the lead role in Disney’s live-action “Zorro” series, told TV Insider that if he is available, he is open to appearing on “That ’90s Show.”
The actor spoke to TV Insider about the Netflix sitcom, which the streaming platform announced in October 2021, while attending the PaleyFest 2022 event for “NCIS.”
When asked about his involvement with “That ’90s Show,” Valderrama replied, “I’m a little busy right now.”
“But I am so proud of them,” he continued. I’m cheering for them. I wish them the best of luck. And if the opportunity presents itself, I’d never say no.”
Fez would be surrounded by familiar faces. Kurtwood Smith and Debra Jo Rupp have already agreed to return to “That ’90s Show” as their hilarious characters Red and Kitty Forman. According to a Netflix press release, the new sitcom will be set in Wisconsin in 1995, more than 15 years after the final episode of the original series.
“That ’90s Show” will follow Leia Forman, who is the daughter of Eric (Topher Grace) and Donna (Callie Haverda) (Laura Prepon). Leia spends the summer with her grandparents and begins to bond with the other teenagers in her neighborhood, creating her own version of the Point Place kids.
“Sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll never d1e; they just change clothes,” according to the press release.
Valderrama told TODAY last year that he played Fez for all eight seasons of “That ’70s Show,” which aired on Fox from 1998 to 2006. He responded to critics who called the acronym Fez, which stands for foreign exchange student, stereotypical.
“I interpreted it as, oh, we don’t know where he’s from, it’d be really funny if I just combined accents from different countries,” he said at the time.
Valderrama said he auditioned for the role five times and that his “little secret sauce” was making verbal gaffes that came across as endearing.
“In many ways, (Fez) could ask the questions that everyone was thinking and say the things that everyone was thinking without having to filter it,” he went on. “I felt like that accent was another great aesthetic to create a multi-dimensional character that I hadn’t seen on television.”
When he thinks back on his time on the show, he feels “proud” to have been a part of a primetime television series.
Now, he believes that a broader range of Latino communities are being heard and represented in Hollywood.
In 2021, he declared, “It’s a new dawn.” “I just think now, if there was ever a time, is the time for us to be as loud as possible with who we should be on screen.”
The premiere date for “That ’90s Show” has yet to be determined by Netflix. The streaming service has also not confirmed whether or not other stars such as Grace, Prepon, Mila Kunis, who played Jackie, and Ashton Kutcher, who played Kelso, will return.
In addition to Haverda, Ashley Aufderheide, Mace Coronel, Maxwell Acee Donovan, Reyn Doi, and Sam Morelos will be series regulars on the new comedy, according to Variety.
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