Nia Talita Long (born October 30, 1970) is an American actress. She is best known for her roles in the television series The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Third Watch, and the films Boiler Room, Soul Food, Love Jones, The Best Man, Big Momma's House, Big Momma's House 2, Are We There Yet?, and Are We Done Yet?.
Long was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Talita, a teacher and printmaker, and Doughtry "Doc" Long, a high school teacher and poet. Her family is of Afro-Trinidadian descent. Her name, Nia, is one of the seven days of Kwanzaa, which means purpose in Swahili.
Long's parents divorced when she was two years old, and she and her mother moved to Iowa City, Iowa, where her mother studied fine arts. They subsequently moved to a South Los Angeles neighborhood when Long was seven, where her mother was supposed to get married. The wedding was called off, but Talita had fallen in love with L.A. and they stayed.
Long's father currently resides in Trenton, New Jersey. Long's half-sister is comedienne Sommore, one of the stars of The Queens of Comedy.
Long attended the Roman Catholic school St. Mary's Academy and studied ballet, tap, jazz, gymnastics, guitar, and acting. She graduated from Westchester High School in 1989. Due to the lack of employment opportunities in the arts in Los Angeles when Long and her mother first arrived there, Long's mother took various low-paying jobs (despite having two master's degrees). The family suffered through financial struggle for years.