Well, damn, damn, damn! Oscar winner Viola Davis and Emmy winner Andre Braugher will take on the iconic roles of Florida and James Evans in next week’s Good Times revival, airing Wednesday night as part of the second edition of ABC’s Live in Front of a Studio Audience. In addition, Tiffany Haddish has signed on to play Florida’s friend and neighbor Willona, while Jay Pharoah, Asante Blackk (When They See Us), and Corinne Foxx (47 Meters Down: Uncaged) will appear as the Evans children, J.J., Michael, and Thelma, in the re-creation of Norman Lear’s mid-1970s CBS sitcom, and another When They See Us alum, Jharrel Jerome, will appear in an as yet undisclosed role. In perhaps the most important news of all, the legendary Good Times theme will be performed by Patti LaBelle and Anthony Anderson.
Davis and Braugher will be tackling parts made famous by the late Esther Rolle and the still very much alive John Amos, who played a married couple keepin’ their head above water and making their way while they could while living in the underfunded public-housing projects of Chicago. ABC isn’t saying whether Amos will appear in Wednesday’s live re-creation, though, given the surprise appearance of Marla Gibbs in last May’s re-creation of The Jeffersons for the first installment of LIFOASA, it wouldn’t be shocking to see him — or one of the original actors who played the Evans kids — pop up. The original Good Times, a spinoff of Lear’s Maude (which itself was a spinoff of All in the Family) aired on CBS from 1975 until 1979. Amos was famously fired from the show after season three, and his character was later killed off. He and Lear have since reconciled.
The next edition of LIFOASA will once again feature a re-created episode of Lear’s All in the Family along with Good Times. It’s scheduled to air live on ABC from 8 until 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday. ABC has ordered a third edition of the Jimmy Kimmel–produced event series, which is likely to air sometime in the spring.