Daphne Maxwell Reid
Daphne Maxwell Reid is known as Aunt Viv, the matriarch on NBC's hit comedy, "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air". She is also known for her role of mortician/embalmer Hannah Griffin on the CBS comedy series "Frank's Place" in which she co-starred with her husband, Tim Reid. She teamed up with Tim again when she starred as Mickie Dennis on "Snoops" for CBS. In 1998 and 1999, she has played the bawdy hooker Eartha on Showtime’s “Linc’s”, created and produced by her husband and shot at New Millennium Studios in Virginia. In 2003 and 2004, she had the pleasure of working on UPN’s hit comedy “Eve” as boyfriend JT’s mother, Frances Hunter.
After graduating from Bronx High School of Science, Daphne pursued a major in Interior Design and Architecture at Northwestern University. While at Northwestern an English teacher from her high school days submitted a photograph to a magazine editor/friend who was preparing an article on college women. The result was a trip to New York and Maxwell Reid's first full-page photograph in "Seventeen" magazine. Quickly signed by the Eileen Ford Agency, she appeared in many magazines, including being the first Black woman to grace the cover of "Glamour" magazine.
Daphne loves to design clothes and makes most of her own wardrobe. In 1992, Maxwell Reid took her sewing talent into a co-venture with the McCall Pattern Company and created, produced and starred in a four video and four-pattern kit called "Suddenly You're Sewing", that actually teaches you how to sew. Maxwell Reid also designs a bi-annual line of patterns for the McCall Pattern Company called the Daphne Maxwell Reid Collection, found in fabric stores across the country.
With her husband, actor/writer/producer Tim Reid, and two other Virginia businessmen, Daphne co-founded and is a principal partner in New Millennium Studios, the first full-service film studio in Virginia. The 60-acre project including a 15,000 square foot soundstage, a state-of-the-art post-production facility and a 25-acre back lot was completed and opened on July 12, 1997. For the past seven years, Daphne has been acting Chief Operating Officer and has handled the business affairs and finances of New Millennium Studios and its various subsidiary companies including their new home video distribution company, Obsidian Home Entertainment.
In In 1998, Daphne was the co-executive producer of New Millennium Studios’ first feature film, “Asunder”. In addition to helping secure the financing for the project, she was involved in overseeing all phases of the production including the delivery and releasing deals. In 2001, Daphne oversaw the production, distribution, and screenings of “For Real”, also a New Millennium Studios film. She was instrumental in the development of a deal between New Millennium Studios and the new cable network, TV One.