Wednesday, January 01, 2014

James Avery, RIP

James A., actor and voice-over artist, dead at 68.

... [Mr. Avery,] who played the family patriarch on NBC’s long-running The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, died December 31 in Glendale, CA after complications from open heart surgery, his publicist said today. Avery was 68. The classically trained actor had just completed shooting what will be his final role: a part in Zach Braff’s Kickstarter-funded indie feature Wish I Was Here, which will premiere later this month at Sundance. Avery was born in Atlantic City in 1945 and eventually served in the Navy in Vietnam. ...

He also voiced numerous animated series including playing Shredder on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series in the mid-’80s and ’90s. But it was his role as Uncle Phil on Fresh Prince that put him on the map. The series ran from 1990-1996 and launched the acting career of Will Smith. ...

James Avery is survived by his wife of 26 years, Barbara Avery, also his mother, Florence Avery; and stepson, Kevin Waters.


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