Actor James Avery dies aged 68

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Actor James Avery dies aged 68

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US actor James Avery has died at the age of 68.

Avery was best known for his role as Phil Banks, or ‘Uncle Phil’ in the television series ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel Air’ alongside Will Smith.

He also appeared in a number of films and other TV shows including ‘Gray’s Anatomy’ and ‘Star Trek’. Avery’s voice was heard in many animated TV series, including ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ and ‘Iron Man’.

He died following complications from open-heart surgery.

Avery had been working on the Zach Braff film ‘Wish I Was Here’, which will premiere at the Sundance Film Festival later this month.

He is survived by his wife Barbara and his step-son, Kevin Waters.

One of the actor’s TV co-stars, Alfonso Ribeiro, who played his son, Carlton, on ‘Fresh Prince’, said in a tweet: “I’m deeply saddened to say that James Avery has passed away. He was a second father to me. I will miss him greatly.”