Corinne Foxx has carved out a brilliant career as a model and actress, but now with Daddy stop embarrassing me! debuts on Netflix
The sitcom is inspired by the life of a 27-year-old teenager and her relationship with her father, Jamie Foxx.
I caught up with her to discuss her early days as a producer, what surprised her, her own path in the industry, and her dream of opening her own production company.
Simon Thompson: Producing is new to you. How did you find the transition?
Corinne Foxx: It was a really great learning experience because I was the youngest and the only producer on the show. I entered these rooms with executives from Netflix, with seasoned people who had those long careers. Not to say that none of them were sweet and amazing to me, but I knew they were big shoes to fill in, and I had to level up really quickly. At first I was very intimidated by it, but then I remembered that no one knows the material better than I do because it’s based on my life. I think that relieved some of the pressure because no one can talk about it more than me.
Thompson: I have followed your career and something that has always impressed me is that you never rode your dad’s cocks.
Foxx: I certainly didn’t. I leaned as much as I could in the opposite direction, especially when I was younger. Before, I wanted no one to know who I was. I think it comes from both of my parents. They both built their careers on their own and love what they do, and I wanted the same for me. My dad always tells me, ‘Hey Corinne, you can lean on me. I know this industry; I know these people. I feel like when things are easily handed to you, they have no value. When you work for them, you celebrate them and feel that you have accomplished something. This is always how I have operated and wanted to enter this industry. What life do you live if you can’t learn and grow along the way? I’ll never be the best of myself if people open doors for me. I want to be able to bring them down.
Thompson: Much of the show grew out of your real life and relationship. How did you decide where to draw the line when it comes to sharing?
Foxx: We really paid attention to the stories we told them. We’ve done so many interviews together for other projects and told some of these stories before. We knew where we were going. We wanted to focus on the relatable stories that other fathers can see and be like, “Oh, I totally did that to my daughter,” where the daughters are like, “Oh my God, my dad made me. it. Everything about the show wasn’t real. The daughter of the show is Sasha, not Corinne. The father is Brian, not Jamie. The world is romanticized and the truth is sprinkled in it.
Thompson: How did you find the relationship shifted from father and daughter to producer and talent?
Foxx: I feel like my dad and understand myself creatively. We have the same genes, and we think the same. We wrote things together that are similar, and we established this communication because we are related. I will say that me being the producer and he being the talent, there were times when the other producers relied on me to give him bad news, tell him to stay on the script and prevent him from improvising. It was definitely a change in dynamics, but he respects me so much that I could tell him something, and he listened to me 95% of the time.
Thompson: As this is your first production, did you feel a great responsibility towards the cast?
Foxx: I felt comfortable with everyone because I had relationships with almost everyone. I had a responsibility towards them, but I felt I was just as comfortable with them so that I could talk to them. The hardest part was in my head rather than coming from them, but getting them to see me as a producer now and not that 10 year old little girl they saw on the red carpet. I’m 27 now, a lot older, so I just wanted to make sure they knew I was a producer and an adult.
Thompson: This first season is an eight episode series. Guess you’ve saved up some ideas for a potential second season?
Foxx: We were very aware of how long it took us to tell the story and get all the arcs in. It was my dad who wanted to make sure some of the episodes were more relevant. We shot this over the summer when a lot of the Black Lives Matter movement was amplified. We wanted to make sure that we were doing our community justice as well, and we were talking about the things we could in a light way.
Thompson: Did you show this to the networks, or was it still a Netflix project?
Foxx: It was always with Netflix, and what was important for my dad was to remake a multi-camera show. He did In Living Color in front of a studio audience. He did it for The Jeffersons, recently I did it for Good time, but it was important for my father to go back to his roots. The goal was to have a live studio audience, to get that reaction from the crowd, but we didn’t have that luxury this time around. Netflix was great getting us set up, and we were one of the first shows to start filming again after the initial quarantine.
Thompson: I imagine life on set will be a lot different if you get this second season?
Foxx: Making a second season would definitely be a fresh start, but I think it will only make the series better. The real actors of this show feed on it. For my dad and David Alan Grier, this will be the juice they need to make even funnier jokes and get deeper into what they do. I’m excited to see this.
Thompson: After you’ve had that experience as a producer, is that an area you want to dig deeper into?
Foxx: I feel like today you don’t have to be one thing. I think back then you could only be an actor, and that was it. Now you can be an actor and a producer. You can be a writer and you can be a business owner. You can have a billion dollar business and be a player. I loved looking into production, and I wrote things that I develop, I develop other things that I produce, so I feel like my career is not going to be a thing. It will be quite multifaceted. With this project, in some ways, I didn’t know what to expect. Everything was new to me. I hadn’t foreseen how much time I would spend in the writers’ room. I loved it and I have a story credit on one of the episodes because I was so involved in it. I looked into writing and creating the arcs for all of the characters. I was slightly biased because they’re my family members as characters, so I wanted to make sure we did them justice.
Thompson: Could you follow in your father’s footsteps and start your own production company?
Foxx: It’s like my North Star, apart from starting a non-profit organization and my own business and then, ultimately, my own production company. These are all big dreams and big goals for me. I don’t consider this to be following in my father’s footsteps. I see it as just staying true to who I am.
Thompson: Do you think there will be a second season of Daddy stop embarrassing me! I wouldn’t be surprised if that happened.
Foxx: I feel pretty good about it. I mean, my dad and David Alan Grier are magical together, and I couldn’t see them on In Living Color at the time because I was not born. My dad told me for years that I didn’t understand, but then I saw him in person, and I was like, “Oh, that’s a whole other chemistry that I’ve never seen from anyone before. ” So, just for that, I feel as confident as you.
Daddy stop embarrassing me! is now available on Netflix.