James Avery Of ‘Fresh Prince’ Fame Dead At 65

NEW YORK (AP) – James Avery, the character actor who laid down the law as the Honorable Philip Banks on “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” has died.

Avery’s publicist, Cynthia Snyder, told The Associated Press that Avery died Tuesday. She did not immediately know the cause of death or where he died. He was 65.

A report from TMZ claims Avery died in a Los Angeles hospital Tuesday night after complications arising from surgery for an unknown illness.

“Fresh Prince” costar Alfonso Ribeiro tweeted, “I’m deeply saddened to say that James Avery has passed away. He was a second father to me. I will miss him greatly.”

Avery played Will Smith’s uncle on the popular TV series. His movie credits included “Fletch,” “The Prince of Egypt” and “8 Million Ways to Die.”

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