Alfonso Ribeiro Opens Up: ‘Fresh Prince’ Sacrificed My Acting Career

Alfonso Ribeiro, best known for his role as Carlton Banks in “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” has recently opened up about the bittersweet impact of playing the iconic character. In an interview with Closer Weekly, Ribeiro revealed that while the role brought him significant recognition, it also became a “sacrifice” that hindered his acting career.

“Playing Carlton on ‘Fresh Prince’ became a sacrifice,” Alfonso Ribeiro explained. “I used to always say doing Carlton was the greatest and worst thing that ever happened to me. It was one of the greatest roles that I was fortunate enough to play, but it was also the role that stopped me from acting again because people couldn’t see me as anything else. The sacrifice was not having an acting career anymore.”

Despite the professional challenges that followed, Ribeiro does not harbor any resentment towards the show. Instead, he fondly reminisces about the camaraderie and memorable moments shared with the cast. “It was about the cast and spending time with them. Before every show, we would go into Will Smith’s dressing room, and we’d play music and dance and just have a great energy buildup to get ready for the show. Those are some great memories of just being together,” he recalled.

Although he has not taken on any major acting roles recently, Ribeiro has found fulfillment in other areas of his career. He expressed to Closer Weekly, “I’m enjoying being a host and am very happy with it.” Currently, at 52 years old, Ribeiro co-hosts “Dancing with the Stars” alongside Julianne Hough, a role he took on after winning season 19 of the show in 2014. Additionally, he hosts “America’s Funniest Home Videos” and “Jack Hanna’s Into the Wild,” both airing on ABC.

“My happiest moments, career-wise, are winning ‘Dancing With the Stars’ and now becoming host of ‘Dancing With the Stars,’” Alfonso Ribeiro said. “And after winning ‘Dancing With the Stars,’ I got the opportunity to do the show that I always wanted to do – ‘America’s Funniest Home Videos.’”

Ribeiro’s journey in the entertainment industry began at the tender age of 8, which eventually led to a memorable Pepsi commercial with Michael Jackson. Reflecting on that experience, Ribeiro said, “It was amazing. I was a huge fan and ended up becoming friends with him. It was quite special. The funny story was when we were doing rehearsals, I couldn’t understand why it was taking Michael so long to learn such simple choreography. Then, I realized, ‘Oh, he’s not learning it. He’s perfecting it.’ Every movement, every fingertip, had to be exactly what he wanted it to be. I learned that it’s not about how quickly you do something, it’s about getting it right in every detail.”

In conclusion, while Carlton Banks may have been a double-edged sword in Ribeiro’s acting career, he has successfully pivoted to hosting, finding joy and success in this new chapter of his professional life.

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