In the mid-1960s, while working as a postman in Philadelphia, young Sherman Hemsley began taking acting lessons. After five years of service, Hemsley was granted a transfer to New York. He had his Broadway debut in 1970 in Purlie, and a couple of years later, Hemsley moved out to Hollywood. It wasn’t long before he was offered the part of George Jefferson (replacing his “brother,” Henry Jefferson) on All in the Family, and remained in that role for the next 12 years – 10 of them as the star of spin-off The Jeffersons.
Hemsley has acted steadily since the show’s conclusion, including a five-year run on Amen, guest spots on Lois and Clark, Martin and Clueless, as well as a brief tour in “The Real Live Jeffersons” stage show.