We all remember him as Carlton from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, but Alfonso Ribeiro has been in the entertainment industry much longer than that one sitcom stint. The 48-year-old multi-hyphenated entertainer has been a working professional for four decades, and while his resumé is extensive, Ribeiro admits his Fresh Prince co-stars are more like his family than any other actors he’s worked with in the past.
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“It was that show,” Ribeiro told Sway in a recent interview. “I’ve been working for 40 years. That’s family. Other shows are friends, people that I work with, people that I’ve spent time with. That is family. And the only other person that I put in that category is Whitney Carson from Dancing with the Stars.” When speaking specifically about Will Smith, he had nothing but praise for the actor.
“Nothing but love,” said Ribeiro. “Supported the right way. You can give a guy a fish but teach him how to fish…that’s the right way. He has always been a beacon for me. Just like, he used to always say, while everybody else is sleeping, I’m working. And now I don’t sleep as much. I’m up early. Five a.m. in the morning I’m like, alright, and there’s no reason for me to be up at five, but that means get up. Get your body going. Get your mind going. What are you creating? What are you doing? This stuff I learned from Will.”
Watch Alfonso Ribeiro’s motivating interview below and see what else he had to say about always staying hungry in the industry and treating every gig as if it’s he’s excited about booking his first job.