Sherri Shepherd gives misfit kids a voice as the principal in Netflix's "Mr. Iglesias"


In her new Netflix comedy show, “Mr. Iglesias,” Emmy Award winner Sherri Shepherd plays a high school principal whose efficient, professional life runs at odds with her chaotic personal one. “She has it all together at school, while her personal life is in shatters,” Shepherd shared on “Salon Talks,” adding candidly, “It’s like they took a page from my book. She’s been married twice, she’s been divorced twice, and she’s looking for love.”

The brainchild of comedian Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias, “Mr. Iglesias” is simultaneously an old school throwback to the classroom comedies of the “Welcome Back, Kotter” era, a socially conscious satire of modern education and a loving tribute to the teacher who changed Iglesias’s life. “Gabe wanted a message to be in there,” Shepherd said, “but he wanted it to be funny, and I think we skirted that line really well.”

It’s a goal that resonates for Shepherd, both as a parent and a woman whose own life was changed by her second grade teacher back in Chicago. “She gave me my love of reading and doing characters and being funny,” Shepherd recalled. “She read to us all the time and played songs and would be the characters. I was fascinated. I took that with me. She always said, ‘Sherri, you’re so smart and you’re so funny.’ She spoke these words of life to me that I remember to this day. Words that you impart to somebody can really make a difference in their life.”

Watch the episode above to hear Shepherd’s reflections on “The View,” the show she co-hosted from 2007 to 2014, and why she says it forever changed talk show TV for women. “Mr. Iglesias” premieres on Netflix June 21.


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Hosted by Salon journalists, “Salon Talks” episodes offer a fresh take on the long-form interview format, and a much-needed break from the partisan political talking heads that have come to dominate the genre. “Salon Talks” is a destination for information through conversation. Viewers can expect discussions with A-list actors, artists, authors, thinkers, and newsmakers as we explore the full range of the human condition. The show streams live on Facebook and Twitter and each episode is published in full on Salon.com.


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