A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was unveiled Tuesday honoring five-time Emmy-nominated actress Marla Gibbs, best known for portraying sassy maid Florence Johnston on “The Jeffersons."
Legendary television producer Norman Lear, who developed ``The Jeffersons" as a spinoff from ``All in the Family," and Tisha Campbell were expected to join Gibbs in speaking at the ceremony outside the El Capitan Entertainment Centre on Hollywood Boulevard.
Gibbs guest starred as a tough new housekeeper in a 1995 episode of the Fox comedy ``Martin," whose cast included Campbell.
The star is the 2,698th since the completion of the Walk of Fame in 1961 with the first 1,558 stars. Gibbs' grandchildren and great-grandchildren witnessed the star being made and assisted on it, Hollywood Walk of Fame producer Ana Martinez told City News Service.
Born Margaret Theresa Bradley in Chicago on June 14, 1931, Gibbs was a divorced mother of three children who was working as a reservations clerk for United Airlines in Detroit when she was transferred to Southern California in the early 1970s and decided to pursue an acting career.
Gibbs initially studied at the Watts-based Mafundi Institute and Watts Writers Workshop and appeared in several plays in the Los Angeles area, including ``Medea," ``The Amen Corner" and ``The Gingerbread Lady."
After minor roles in the films ``Sweet Jesus, Preacherman" and "Black Belt Jones," she was cast for ``The Jeffersons," which ran on CBS from 1975-85 and brought her five consecutive best supporting actress in a comedy series Emmy nominations from 1981-85.
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Following the cancellation of ``The Jeffersons," Gibbs starred in the 1985-90 NBC comedy ``227," portraying a sharp-tongued housewife living in an apartment building in northeast Washington, D.C.
Gibbs' other television credits include recurring roles on the NBC daytime drama ``Passions" and the 1998 ABC/UPN comedy ``The Hughleys" and guest-starring roles on ``NCIS," ``The King of Queens" and ``Touched by an Angel." In 2021, Gibbs has appeared on the CBS comedy ``Young Sheldon" and the Disney+ girls' high school basketball series ``Big Shot."
Gibbs' other film credits include ``The Visit," ``El Camino" and ``Stanley's Gig."
Gibbs sang and co-wrote the theme songs for ``227" and ``Checking In," ``The Jeffersons" spinoff that ran for four episodes in 1981 in which Johnston was the executive housekeeper at a New York City hotel. Gibbs released the CD ``It's Never Too Late" in 2006.
Gibbs also operated a jazz supper club in South Los Angeles, Marla's Memory Lane, in the 1980s and 1990s and co-founded the Crossroads Theater and Acting school with her daughter Angela.