Fans of “That ‘70s Show” might see Wilmer Valderrama reprise his role as Fez in Netflix’s upcoming spin-off of the beloved sitcom.
Valderrama, 42, who currently stars on “NCIS” and recently landed the leading role in Disney’s live-action “Zorro” series, told TV Insider that he is open to appearing on “That ‘90s Show” if he is available.
While attending the PaleyFest 2022 event for “NCIS,” the actor spoke to TV Insider about the Netflix sitcom, which the streaming platform announced in October 2021.
When asked about his potential involvement with “That ‘90s Show,” Valderrama replied, “I’m a little busy now.”
He then added, “But I support them so much. I’m rooting for them. I wish them nothing but the best. And if the timing is right, I’d never say no.”
Fez would be surrounded by a couple familiar faces. Kurtwood Smith and Debra Jo Rupp have already signed on to reprise their hilarious characters Red and Kitty Forman in “That ‘90s Show.”According to a Netflix press release, the new sitcom will be set in Wisconsin in 1995, which will be over 15 years after the original series’ final episode.
“That ‘90s Show” will follow Leia Forman, played by Callie Haverda, who is the daughter of Eric (Topher Grace) and Donna (Laura Prepon). Leia visits her grandparents for the summer and begins to bond with the other teenagers in her neighborhood, creating her version of the Point Place kids.
“Sex, drugs and rock ’n roll never dies, it just changes clothes,” the press release said.
Last year, Valderrama spoke to TODAY about playing Fez for all eight seasons of “That ‘70s Show,” which aired on Fox from 1998 to 2006. He addressed critics who have labeled Fez, which stands for foreign exchange student, as stereotypical.
“I interpreted it as like, oh, we don’t know where he’s from, it’d be really funny if I just combined accents from different countries,” he explained at the time.
Valderrama recalled auditioning for the role five times and said his “little secret sauce” was making verbal mistakes that came across as charming.
“In many ways, (Fez could) ask the questions that everyone was thinking and say the things that was on everyone’s mind and not have to filter it,” he continued. “I felt like that accent was another great aesthetic to create a character that was still multi-dimensional that I hadn’t seen on television.”
He looks back on his time on the show and feels “proud” of being on a primetime television series.
Now, he thinks even more diverse Latino communities are being heard and represented in Hollywood.
“It’s a new dawn,” he said in 2021. “I just think now is the time if there was ever a window for us to be as loud as possible with who we should be on screen.”
Netflix has not set a premiere date for “That ‘90s Show.” The streaming platform also hasn’t confirmed if other stars like Grace, Prepon, Mila Kunis, who played Jackie, and Ashton Kutcher, who played Kelso, will return.
In addition to Haverda, Variety reports that Ashley Aufderheide, Mace Coronel, Maxwell Acee Donovan, Reyn Doi and Sam Morelos will be series regulars on the new comedy.