A lot of people probably remember All In The Family as an iconic sitcom from the 70s. Those of you that do remember will admit that the humor on the show doesn’t really hold up today. Whether it’s because people have become more sensitive, or because times really have changed, well that’s still up for debate. One thing is for sure though…we’re about to find out.
Norman Lear, who wrote and produced both All In The Family and its spinoff The Jeffersons, is rebooting both shows for a one-night-only TV special that will run about 90 minutes. Lear will be pairing up with Jimmy Kimmel to bring the shows back to life.
Lear is excited to see his shows come back to life and prove some of those people who don’t think the humor will hold up wrong.
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 her to prove, with two great casts depicting All in the Family and The Jeffersons, the timeliness 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.
Kimmel also commented on the revival, saying he’s thrilled to have so many people agreed to be a part of it.
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 everyone involved.
So who are these people that Kimmel is talking about? Let’s find out!
Wanda Sykes as Louise “Weezie” Jefferson
Sykes is going to have some big shoes to fill, as the original Weezie, played by Isabel Sanford, won an Emmy for her job in the role in 1981. Sanford was the first black woman to win in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series.
However, if anyone is up to the task, it’s Sykes. The comedian is currently appearing on Blackish, for which she’s been nominated for two Emmy Awards.
Jamie Foxx as George Jefferson
Originally played by Sherman Hemsley, George Jefferson got started as the next-door neighbor of the Bunkers. Hemsley was nominated for an Emmy and a Golden Globe for his performance, and won the NAACP Image Award.
As for Foxx, he won an Oscar and a Golden Globe for his portrayal of Ray Charles in Ray, so the talent is definitely not lacking. It will be interesting to see if he can get the comedic timing.
Marisa Tomei as Edith Bunker
Edith Bunker, or as Archie called her, Dingbat, was a beloved character on the show. When she was killed off in the spin-off Archie Bunker’s Place, fans were left shocked and saddened that their favorite TV housewife no longer existed in the fictional world. The role was played by Jean Stapleton, who took home three Emmys and two Golden Globes for her work.
Now, it will be up to Oscar-winner Marisa Tomei to bring the character back to life.
Woody Harrelson as Archie Bunker
I’m not sure they could have picked a better person for this if they tried. Noted gruff Harrelson is tasked with bringing the “lovable bigot” back to the small screen. The Emmy winner and three-time Oscar nominee has the comedic timing and sarcastic attitude to give us a great Archie Bunker.
Originally played by Carroll O’Connor, Bunker is the main reason most people don’t think the show could hold up today. Despite the controversy, O’Connor played the role perfectly, brining home four Emmy awards for his work.
Those are the roles we know for sure, but there are three other actors who have been confirmed to be on the series, although their exact roles haven’t been confirmed. One of those people is Justina Machado, and there aren’t any rumors as to who she might play.
That being said, the other two have some rumors swirling around them.
POTENTIALLY: Ellie Kemper as Gloria Stivic
Absolutely no one can replace the work that Sally Struthers did as Stivic, but it seems Ellie Kemper might give it her best shot. Struthers won two Emmys as Archie Bunker’s daughter, and Kemper has been nominated for two Emmys for her role as the title character in Unbreakable Kimmy Scmidt.
POTENTIALLY: Will Ferrell as Tom Willis
Will Ferrell is rumored to be playing Tom Willis, who was one half of an interracial couple living next door to George and Louise Jefferson. The role was originally played by Franklin Cover, but I’d love to see what Ferrell could do with it!
I’m a little curious to see how they bring the humor of All In The Family to such a politically sensitive world, but I know I’ll definitely be tuning in!