Sherman Hemsley died Tuesday at age 74, but his turns on screen as George Jefferson will live on. He made a career out of one iconic character. As EW’s TV critic Ken Tucker wrote Tuesday: “Hemsley took a part that could have been clownish and exaggerated — George Jefferson, the braying entrepeneur striving to, as the show’s theme song said, ‘move on up’ — and made George a vital, three-dimensional character, and an important advance in the depiction of black characters in sitcoms.”
From appearing in commercials in character, to guest turns as Judge Robertson on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and shaking it up on Soul Train, he played up George (and in particular his dance moves) at every turn. Check out some of our favorite clips of Hemsley from The Jeffersons and beyond on screen below:
Hemsley’s George Jefferson character got his start on All in the Family. The episode below became the pilot episode for The Jeffersons.
Movin’on up: The Jeffersons became its own show in 1975.
This classic clip has George expressing his disdain for Mother Jefferson’s new-found beau.
NEXT PAGE: Hemsley’s serious dance moves