Avery's publicist, Cynthia Snyder, told The Associated Press that Avery died Tuesday in
Avery, who stood more than 6 feet tall, played the family patriarch and a wealthy attorney and judge on the popular TV comedy that launched the acting career of Will Smith as Banks' troublemaking nephew.
The sitcom, which aired on NBC from 1990 to 1996, was set in the Banks' mansion, to which Smith's character was sent from
Avery liked to say that the way to be an actor was to act, and he had a busy and diverse career before, during and after "Fresh Prince." His TV credits included "Grey's Anatomy," ''NYPD Blue" and "Dallas," and among his many films were "Fletch," ''Nightflyers" and "
According to Snyder, he will be seen in the film "Wish I Was Here," directed by Zach Braff and scheduled to premiere later this month at the Sundance festival.
Avery grew up in
He is survived by his wife, Barbara, and stepson Kevin Waters.