The show, the character, and Hemsley himself were so beloved that they turned up on TV again 11 years after the cancellation of The Jeffersons: in the series finale of Will Smith’s The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
Making the jump from the Broadway stage to the television screen launched Hemsley to national prominence and fame — and an almost permanent typecasting as George Jefferson. Nevertheless, he went on to appear in NBC’s Amen from 1986 through 1991, as well as voicing a character on the classic ABC live-action puppet series Dinosaurs from 1991 to 1994.
After 1994, he largely retired from television acting — though would occasionally revisit George Jefferson in cameos or for commercials, even long after the show’s cancellation.
Sherman Hemsley, who was born on February 1, 1938 in Philadelphia, passed away on July 24, 2012 in El Paso, Texas. He was 74 years old.
The Jeffersons: Movin’ On Up
Interview with Sherman Hemsley
Here, Sherman Hemsley talks about his experience on The Jeffersons</a>in this interview from August 2003. (Find out more and see other segments here.)