Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Tribute: James Avery of “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air”

posted by Nell Minow

We mourn the loss of actor James Avery, who starred with Will Smith as Uncle Phil in Fresh Prince of Bel Air.  Avery was a Vietnam veteran who became a writer, actor, and voice talent. He was a great foil for Will Smith on “Fresh Prince,” with a commanding presence that suited his role as a lawyer and later a judge.  While he was often the straight man, his comic timing was subtle and if you watch closely you can see how much Smith learned from him over the years.


YouTube Preview Image

Avery also provided voices for animated characters as wide-ranging as The Shredder in “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” and War Machine in “Iron Man.”  He hosted “Going Places,” a popular travel and adventure series on PBS.  He memorably played disabled characters, a legally-blind witness to a murder on CSI and a wheelchair-bound medical examiner on “The Closer.”

He died at age 68 from complications following open heart surgery.  His last film, aptly named “Valediction,” has been a festival favorite and I hope it will be available streaming or in theaters later this year.  May his memory be a blessing.

YouTube Preview Image
Previous Posts

The Art of More -- Coming to Crackle November 19, 2015
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="" frameborder="0"] An intense, one-hour drama set in the high-stakes world of New York auction houses, “The Art of More” ...

posted 8:00:00am Oct. 10, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Jon Gries of "Endgame" (and "Get Shorty" and "Napoleon Dynamite")
I'm a big fan of actor Jon Gries, who always brings something very specific and interesting to his roles. In "Endgame," the story of a championship chess team from a school in a poor community from writer/director Carmen Marron, it would have ...

posted 3:27:36pm Oct. 09, 2015 | read full post »

Meryl Streep Calls for More Women Film Critics
The Hollywood Reporter quotes Meryl Streep on the disproportionate number of male film critics on Rotten Tomatoes:  "The word isn’t 'disheartening,' it’s 'infuriating,'” she said. “I submit to you that men and women are not the same. ...

posted 8:00:10am Oct. 09, 2015 | read full post »

Big Stone Gap
Even in small towns, big things can happen. Sometimes the most famous movie star in the world stops by and makes international headlines. And ...

posted 5:51:50pm Oct. 08, 2015 | read full post »

Laurel Hester (Julianne Moore), a 23-year veteran of the police force, learns that she has terminal cancer. And then she learns something even ...

posted 5:50:17pm Oct. 08, 2015 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.