Alfonso Ribeiro: 'The Fresh Prince TV reunion will never happen'
Will Smith previously ruled out reprising his Fresh Prince role for a rumoured reboot.
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air co-stars will "never" reunite for a TV return because the sitcom "doesn't work" without late family patriarch James Avery, according to actor Alfonso Ribeiro.
The 45-year-old was able to catch up with his old TV family members, including Will Smith and Tatyana Ali, last month (Mar17), during an event for children's charity Sweet Blackberry, founded by co-star Karyn Parsons, who played Alfonso's onscreen sister Hilary Banks.
He posted a photo of the group, which also featured Daphne Maxwell Reid and Joseph Marcell, on social media, and lamented the absence of James, known for playing Philip Banks, aka Uncle Phil, who died in 2013 from complications following open heart surgery.
In the accompanying caption, Alfonso, who portrayed Avery's TV son Carlton Banks, wrote, "Always amazing to spend an afternoon with my Fresh Prince family. Wishing that James Avery was still with us to make this complete."
He was asked about the sweet snap during a guest-hosting stint on U.S. breakfast show Today on Monday (24Apr17), when Alfonso admitted he had a good time reminiscing with his old pals, but insisted they would never sign up for a Fresh Prince reboot without Avery, who was famed for his deep, booming vocals.
"The reason why I always say we will never do any episodes again is simply because... the show doesn't work without James Avery, and with his passing, it just felt like that was the final like, 'Nah,'" Alfonso said. "He was the bass. It's like, you have music and it's just all treble (without him). You gotta have that bass."
His comments emerge four months after leading star Will Smith dismissed the idea of reprising his titular role in December (16), when industry rumours suggested the popular 1990s series would be the next old franchise to be revived following the recent success of hits like the Full House revamp and the Gilmore Girls mini-series.
"I'm not doing it," he told Entertainment Tonight, adding, "If somebody wanted to (take over the role), I would probably let them, but I have no intention."
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air aired for six seasons from 1990 to 1996, and turned rapper/actor Smith into a household name. He went on to carve out a successful movie career, with roles in blockbusters like Bad Boys, Men in Black, and Independence Day.
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