Regina Taylor

Regina Taylor Headshot

Actress • Writer

Birth Name: Regina Annette Taylor

Birth Date: August 22, 1960

Age: 63 years old

Birth Place: Dallas, Texas

This performer made a hit onstage in the 1980s and was lauded for one particular TV role, before beginning to make her mark in features. Taylor grew up in a poor Dallas, TX neighborhood and began acting in college. Arriving in New York in 1981, she supported herself with odd jobs until the roles began coming in: repertory, off-Broadway and finally the New York Shakespeare Festival's "Shakespeare on Broadway."

Overseen by actress/director Estelle Parsons, the program presented Shakespearean productions for NYC high school students. Taylor appeared in several productions and had the distinction of being one of the few black actresses to portray Juliet. She also adapted several German plays for the New York Theater Festival, and was one of the few American performers in the Broadway show "Sarafina!" (1988-89).

Taylor made her TV debut in tiny roles in "Crisis in Central High" (CBS, 1981) and "Concealed Enemies" (PBS, 1984) and portrayed a lawyer in "Howard Beach: Making a Case for Murder" (NBC, 1989) before being cast in the highly-acclaimed (but low-rated) series "I'll Fly Away" (NBC, 1991-93). Her performance as Lilly Harper, a black housekeeper and surrogate mother to the three children of a widowed white prosecuting attorney (Sam Waterston) in the 1950s South, won her such accolades as "superb, conveying a mixture of strong intelligence and simmering anger with a complete absence of extraneous fuss" (THE NEW YORK TIMES).

Taylor also appeared in the follow-up TV-movie, "I'll Fly Away: Then and Now" (PBS, 1993), and the miniseries "Children of the Dust" (CBS, 1995), as one of a group of freed slaves out to claim land in Oklahoma.

Film work was slower in coming. Taylor made her feature debut as a crack addict trying to kick the habit in "Lean on Me" (1989), then had a supporting role in the child-custody drama "Losing Isaiah" (1995). After appearing in the crime drama "The Keeper," Taylor got a break from director Spike Lee, who cast her as a Brooklyn mother trying to keep her son safe from drugs and crime in "Clockers" (both 1995).

She went on to appear in the military drama "Courage Under Fire," with Denzel Washington and Meg Ryan, the drama "A Family Thing," with Robert Duvall, and a ghost story, "Spirit Lost" (all 1996). Taylor has not forsaken the stage. She wrote and starred in a one-woman show, "Escape from Paradise" (1994), and two of her one-act plays were performed in Chicago.

Credits

Ladies

Actor
Movie
2022

CSI: VegasStream

Guest Star
Raquel Williams
Series
2021
77%

A Jenkins Family ChristmasStream

Actor
Baneatta
Movie
2021

Council of DadsStream

Guest Star
Anne Norris
Series
2020
50%

All Day and a Night

Actor
Tommetta
Movie
2020

The Red LineStream

Guest Star
Dinorah Benson
Series
2019
72%

An Evening With the HistoryMakers: Chicago Stories

Host
Show
2017

Saturday Church

Actor
Aunt Rose
Movie
2017

DigStream

Actor
Ambassador Ruth Ridell
Series
2015
33%

The Mysteries of LauraStream

Guest Star
Series
2014
24%

ElementaryStream

Guest Star
Dr. Wilkerson
Series
2012
95%

Blue BloodsStream

Guest Star
NYPD Captain Terrell
Series
2010

Who Is Clark Rockefeller?

Actor
Megan Norton
Movie
2010

The UnitStream

Actor
Molly Blane
Series
2006
84%

In From the Night

Actor
Dr. A. Gardner
Movie
2006

Grey's AnatomyStream

Guest Star
Series
2005
84%

The Education of Max Bickford

Actor
Judith Hackett Bryant
Show
2001

Masterpiece Theatre's American Collection

Actor
Show
2000

Cora Unashamed

Actor
Cora Jenkins
Movie
2000

Strange Justice

Actor
Anita Hill
Movie
1999

The NegotiatorStream

Actor
Karen Roman
Movie
1998
74%

Feds

Actor
Show
1997

The Third Twin

Actor
Sgt. Michelle "Mish" Delaware
Movie
1997

Spirit Lost

Actor
Willy
Movie
1997

Courage Under FireStream

Actor
Meredith Serling
Movie
1996
86%

A Family ThingStream

Actor
Ann
Movie
1996
73%

The Keeper

Actor
Angela Lamont
Movie
1996

Children of the Dust

Actor
Show
1995

Losing IsaiahStream

Actor
Gussie
Movie
1995
45%

ClockersStream

Actor
Iris Jeeter
Movie
1995
73%

A Good Day to Die

Actor
Drusilla
Movie
1995

I'll Fly Away: Then and Now

Actor
Lilly Harper
Movie
1993

I'll Fly Away

Actor
Lilly Harper
Series
1991

I'll Fly Away

Actor
Lilly Harper
Movie
1991

Law & OrderStream

Guest Star
Series
1990

Lean on MeStream

Actor
Mrs. Carter
Movie
1989
68%

Howard Beach: Making a Case for Murder

Actor
Movie
1989

The Lure of a Woman

Actor
Movie
1921