Jamie Foxx To Star As George Jefferson In ‘Live Event’ Presentation Of ‘The Jeffersons’
Actor/comedian/singer/host Jamie Foxx is a man of many talents and there are few things he can’t do when it comes to entertainment, however he may be facing his biggest challenge yet playing one of the most iconic TV characters of all-time. Foxx is set to play the legendary George Jefferson character in the upcoming ABC special live event presentation of the series.
Oscar-winning actor Jamie Foxx has done it all and then some when it comes to his career. After getting his start on the classic sketch comedy show In Living Color in the early 90s, he moved on to his own self-titled sitcom, The Jamie Foxx Show a few years later. That was followed by several movies, multi-platinum albums and TV hosting gigs, like the current Beat Shazam.
Now, Foxx is gearing up to flex his impressive comedic chops to step into the shoes of George Jefferson, played hilariously by the one and only Sherman Hemsley. According to reports, ABC is putting together a live production of the classic sitcom The Jeffersons and Foxx has been tapped to play the lead role of George. The series, created by Norman Lear, who is producing this live version, is a spinoff of All in the Family, which will also be included in the live production.
The live 90-minute event will re-create an original episode from both Emmy-winning Lear comedies, The Jeffersons and All in the Family. Lear and nighttime talk show host Jimmy Kimmel will host the night, with Emmy winner James Burrows directing.
The one-night only event has already cast the most crucial roles for both shows. Rounding out the cast of The Jeffersons so far, is Wanda Sykes as Louise Jefferson, Will Ferrell as George and Louise’s friend Tom Willis and Justina Machado as Jefferson housekeeper, Florence Johnston. The roles of Tom’s wife, Helen Willis, George and Louise’s son Lionel, Tom and Helen’s daughter Jenny and Mother Jefferson have yet to be cast.
As for All in the Family, Woody Harrelson will take on the role of Archie Bunker, Marisa Tomei as his wife Edith Bunker and Ellie Kemper as their daughter Gloria Stivic.
Speaking about whether the often-controversial nature of both shows could work today, creator Lear said:
“They have said over and over again that these two shows were meant for the ’70s and would not work today. We disagree with them and are here to prove, with two great casts depicting ‘All in the Family’ and ‘The Jeffersons,’ the timelessness of human nature. I cannot wait to see what these glorious performers make in our time of these indelible characters, and I couldn’t be more grateful for Jimmy Kimmel, Sony and ABC for their collective willingness to conceive and pursue this never-been-done-before event.”
ABC Entertainment president, Karey Burke expressed her excitement at the live event, saying:
“We are so honored to partner with our brilliant friend Jimmy Kimmel and trailblazer Norman Lear to bring some of the most iconic sitcoms ever made back to television. These revered shows are as culturally relevant today as they’ve ever been, and the talent they have gathered makes this the can’t-miss television event of the year … make that decade.”
Kimmel also added his thoughts:
“The fact that a group of Oscar winners eagerly agreed to play these iconic characters is a testament to the greatness of these shows and their creator, Norman Lear. To be a part of this is a dream come true for me and for everyone involved.”
The live production of The Jeffersons and All in the Family, is set to air on May 22nd at 8PM on ABC. That’s just two days after Jamie Foxx returns for season three of his popular game show, Beat Shazam on FOX, airing May 20th.
What do you think of Jamie Foxx playing George Jefferson? Let us know in the comments!