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    A Different World Cast Turns 35, See Their Future Projects, and Flashbacks

    A Different World Cast turns 35 years old. On this day in 1987, the classic sitcom, A Different World, debuted on NBC.

    The show was a spin-off of The Cosby Show.  The sitcom followed Denise Huxtable, played by Lisa Bonet, as she enters the fictional HBCU Hillman College, located in Virginia.

    Although it was called A Different World the life resonated with many in the Black community. Furthermore, it was one of few shows portraying young African Americans in a positive way. But also, the show aired highlights of attending Historical Black Colleges and Universities in this country.

    As young adults, A Different World cast dealt with many issues not discussed during The Cosby Show. Tougher topics included race and class relations, sexual assault, and the epidemiology of HIV/AIDS. This shift in content is heavily attributed to the arrival of Debbie Allen, who served as a producer for the show in its second season.


    The Different World Cast and crew included, Glynn Turman as Col. Bradford ‘Brad’ Taylor, as well as Dawnn Lewis as Jaleesa Vinson Taylor, and Lou Myers as Vernon Gaines.

    Other cast members included Charnele Brown as Kimberly ‘Kim’ Reese Kadeem Hardison as Dwayne Cleophus Wayne, Jasmine Guy as Whitley Marion Gilbert Wayne, Darryl M. Bell as Ronald ‘Ron’ Johnson, and Cree Summer as Winifred ‘Freddie’ Brooks.

    Some of the main stars also included Lisa Bonet known as Denise Huxtable, Jasmine Guy as Whitley Gilbert, Kadeem Hardison and Dwayne Wayne, Dawnn Lewis, Cree Summer, Darryl M. Bell, Charnele Brown, Glynn Turman, and Jada Pinkett-Smith, along with a long list of other actors, actresses, and special guest stars.

    Lisa Bonet departed in the first season. Therefore, the remainder of the series primarily focused more on Gilbert and Wayne’s relationship as they navigated college life at Hillman College.

    Although the show came to an end in 1993 it was more than an impact on today’s society. During their six-season airing, they show received stellar reviews on NBC. The crew members are still a powerful staple as popularized icons of successful Black sitcoms.

    Many of them went on to land successful roles in life.

    Attributions to Essence

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