Post by Mike Spadoni on Jan 2, 2014 17:47:01 GMT 1
Actor James Avery, best-known for his role as wise but firm uncle Philip Banks on the sitcom "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," died December 31st in a Los Angeles hospital. According to TMZ.com, the 68-year-old Avery had recently undergone open heart surgery and reportedly died from complications from the operation. The Atlantic City, New Jersey-born Avery, a classically trained actor and poet, was raised by a single mom and served in the Navy during the Vietnam Road. His first onscreen appearance was as an unbilled dancer in the 1980 film "The Blues Brothers." Avery went on to do voice-overs for various animated series. But it was his role as Uncle Phil to "Fresh Prince" Will Smith that brought him fame; his character was one of "TV Guide" magazine's 50 greatest TV dads of all time. "Fresh Prince" ran from 1990 to 1996 on NBC, continues in reruns to this day, and helped propel Smith to a successful film career. Avery also starred in various TV shows over the years, including "Grey's Anatomy," "The Closer," "L.A. Law," and "The Jeffersons," along with roles in some made-for-television films. Two years ago, most of the "Fresh Prince" cast, including Avery and Smith, reunited at a charity event. Former co-star Alfonzo Ribeiro, who played his buttoned-up son Carlton Banks, posted his condolences on Twitter: I'm deeply saddened to say that James Avery has passed away. He was a second father to me. I will miss him greatly. Avery Banks is survived by wife Barbara, his stepson and his mother.
"Seeing a murder on television can help work off one's antagonisms. And if you haven't any antagonisms, the commercials will give you some."--Alfred Hitchcock