Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Sherman Hemsley - The Black Archie Bunker

Veteran American actor Sherman Hemsley aka George Jefferson passed away at the age of 74 on July 24, 2012.

He will be best remembered as the straight-talking bigot George Jefferson in The Jeffersons, the popular 1970s sitcom.

George Jefferson is regarded as the Black Archie Bunker in comparison with the late Carol O'Connor's bigoted bar owner from All In The Family and its spin-off Archie Bunker's Place.

The Jeffersons is itself a spin-off of All In The Family.

Read all about Hemsley from Wikipedia.

Sherman Alexander Hemsley (February 1, 1938 – July 24, 2012) was an American actor most famous for his role as George Jefferson on the television series All In The Family and The Jeffersons.

Hemsley was born and raised in South Philadelphia by his mother, who was a factory worker.

He joined the United States Air Force, where he served for four years.

On leaving the Air Force, he worked for the Post Office during the day while attending acting school at night.

He then moved to New York and starred in the early 1970s Broadway play Purlie.

Norman Lear called him in 1971 to play the role of George Jefferson on his burgeoning new sitcom, All In The Family.

The characters of Hemsley and co-star Isabel Sanford were secondary, but were given their own spin-off series, The Jeffersons, less than two years after Hemsley made his debut on the show.

The Jeffersons proved to be one of Lear's most successful shows, enjoying a run of 11 seasons through 1985.

Hemsley and Sanford appeared together in the late 1990s and in the early 2000s, reprising their roles in guest spots on television programmes such as The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air.

In recent years Hemsley lent his voice to the animated series Family Guy.

Hemsley was also a jazz keyboardist and released a single in 1989 titled Ain't That A Kick In The Head.