James Avery dies: Cast of Fresh Prince of Bel Air pay tribute to late actor, except Will Smith
Will Smith, the star of the hit 90s sitcom, is yet to vocalise his condolences, leaving it up to wife Jada Pinkett-Smith to make a public statement
Alfonso Ribeiro and Tatyana Ali have paid public tribute to their on-screen father, James ‘Uncle Phil’ Avery.
But the star of the Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Will Smith, is yet to vocalise his condolences, leaving it up to wife Jada Pinkett-Smith to make a public statement about the actor’s death following open heart surgery.
Taking to her Facebook page last night, Pinkett Smith posted, perhaps on her husband’s behalf: "Happy New Year everyone! I was hoping to start the new year differently but we have lost yet another friend.
"James Avery who we all lovingly know as Uncle Phil from The Fresh Prince has passed.
"Our condolences to aunt Florence (his mother), Miss Barbara (his wife) and all those who loved him. Rest in peace James."
The news was originally broken by Avery’s co-star – and son in the series - Alfonso Ribeiro, who played Carlton Banks.
Also taking to Facebook, Ribeiro wrote on his wall: “The world has lost a truly special man. I am very saddened to say that James Avery has passed.
"Even though he played my father on TV, he was a wonderful father figure to me in life. He will be deeply missed."
Tatyana Ali, who played James' on-screen daughter Ashley Banks, similarly paid tribute, this time taking to Twitter to write the following:
James was my teacher my protector & the most magnificent actor. We’re feeling his loss very deeply. He’ll always be apart of me #JamesAveryTatyana Ali (@TatyanaAli) January 1, 2014
Avery's publicist, Cynthia Snyder, told the Associated Press that he died in Glendale, California, yesterday following complications from open heart surgery.
Avery grew up in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and served in the navy in Vietnam in the late 1960s. After returning to the States, he settled in California and studied drama and literature at the University of California at San Diego.
He is survived by his wife, Barbara, and stepson, Kevin Waters.
The news comes just a week after Fresh Prince of Bel Air producer Jeff Pollack was found dead aged 54.
The famed director, who was behind comedies such as Lost & Found, Booty Call and drama Above The Rim, died suddenly last Monday morning in Hermosa Beach, California.
He was found in Greenbelt Park, which is a popular spot for jogging and outdoor activities in the area. He was wearing jogging clothes, lieutenant Tom Thompson of the Hermosa Beach Police Department confirmed.
- 1 Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 2 Katie Hopkins and The Sun editor David Dinsmore reported to police for incitement to racial hatred following migrant boat column
- 3 Giorgio Armani criticises the way some gay men dress saying 'a man has to be a man'
- 4 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
- 5 Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'
Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
Katie Hopkins and The Sun editor David Dinsmore reported to police for incitement to racial hatred following migrant boat column
'Jihadi John': Isis executioner Mohammed Emwazi wanted to wage jihad in Somalia until his friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
Parma, Missouri: 80 per cent of town's police quit after first black mayor is elected
Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
£18000 - £20000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Assistant - Immediate ...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join one of...
£18000 - £20000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Assistant (Events busi...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This privately-owned company designs and manuf...