12:30 PM EDT 04/13/2013
Originally posted 01/09/2013 11:45AM
TV has lost one of its most familiar character actors: Ned Wertimer, best known as the tip-hungry Ralph the doorman on The Jeffersons, died Jan. 2 at a nursing facility outside Los Angeles, the result of a fall in his Burbank home last November, his manager announced late Tuesday. He was 89.
With more than 100 small-screen credits to his name, as well as Broadway (Bye Bye Birdie) and film (Mame and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End) roles, Wertimer was known to audiences of such shows as Gunsmoke, McMillan and Wife, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, WKRP in Cincinnati and Mork & Mindy, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
But it was on all 11 seasons of The Jeffersons, from 1975 to 1985, that he made his strongest mark.
Originally posted 07/24/2012 04:40PM
Sherman Hemsley, the hot-tempered, upwardly mobile, janitor-turned-dry-cleaner-owner George Jefferson in TV's iconic The Jeffersons, has died at 74.
Hemsley died at his home in El Paso, Texas, police say. A cause of death was not immediately known.
Introduced each week with the gospel Movin' On Up theme song, producer Norman Lear's show gave Hemsley a larger-than-life character who delivered a brand of comedy all his own.
Zingers like "If I paid you to think, you could cash your check at the penny arcade!" paired with over-the-top gestures left audiences across the country in stitches. The show has lived on for years in reruns on cable.
The actor, who first played the role in All in the Family – going head to bigoted head with Carroll O'Connor's Archie Bunker – went on to embody a softer character, Deacon Ernest Frye on TV's Amen.
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