After years of saving face and keeping up the pretense that she revels in her “Nanny” child acting roots, Madeline Zima is coming clean. “I would rather be honest. I have been diplomatic and neutral and politically correct long enough. I don’t have to do that s*** anymore.”
I admit I entirely missed Madeline Zima’s performance as the child star on the 1990’s Fran Drescher sitcom, The Nanny, (1993-99) but I have a very vivid recollection of her as the all-too-grown-up, Lolita-esque, Mia Lewis on cable TV’s Californication. According to Zima I didn’t miss much however as her tenure on the sitcom as Grace Sheffield on the 90’s comedy, “Wasn’t a fun experience.”
In a recent interview with TV Page New Zealand, Madeline admits that she didn’t realize how bad her childhood sitcom experience was didn’t until she had the opportunity to work on other projects. She is currently filming television series Beta and in 2013 completed three films Crazy Kind of Love, Breaking the Girls, and #Stuck.
“There were other experiences on other sets where people treated me kindly. I worked when I was five-years-old on The Hand That Rocks the Cradle and everybody was wonderful to work with on that set.
“People treated me as they should have – because I was a child. There was just a kindness and a sensitivity that didn’t exist on the set of The Nanny. They treated me more like a prop than like a human being.”
“At a certain point I can’t pretend like it was some great experience anymore. And it bums so many people out because they love the show. They are like, ‘What’s wrong with this girl? Why didn’t she like it?'”
According to other sources, Madeline hasn’t seen the Nanny cast since the 2004 TV special “The Nanny Reunion: A Nosh to Remember.”
She does keep up with some of her former cast though. “I see Nicolle (Tom) every now and again, we’ve always been close. I absolutely adore her. I went to Ben (Salisbury’s) wedding and talk to Charlie on [social media]. But I haven’t seen Fran since the reunion.”
Madeline successfully transitioned from child star to adult actress through “persistence and hard work.” She says, “There’s no such thing as an overnight success, just people doing what they love and never giving up. I just never gave up.”