'Good Times' Star Ja'Net Dubois Appeared on 'Live in Front of a Studio Audience' Special Just 2 Months Before Her Death

With the news that Ja'Net Dubois has passed away at the age of 74, some have pointed out that the actress kept working right until the end. Back in December, Dubois appeared on the second performance of Live in Front of a Studio Audience. The special recreated episodes of All in the Family as well as Good Times, which originally starred Dubois as neighbor Willona Woods.

Dubois appeared alongside her formal co-stars Bern Nadette Stanis, who played Thelma, and Jimmie Walker, who played the catchphrase-friendly character of J.J. The trio were introduced by Jimmy Kimmel, who hosts ABC's live specials.

In addition to starring as Willona on Good Times, Dubois also co-wrote and sang The Jeffersons' infectious theme song, "Movin' On Up."

An episode of The Jeffersons was previously recreated on the first telecast of Live in Front of a Studio Audience and is perhaps best remembered for Jamie Foxx, taking on Sherman Helmsley's role of George Jefferson, flubbing his lines partway through.

Tuesday morning, Dubois was found in her home by an unidentified individual, though it's being reported by TMZ that the actress passed away in her sleep. The publication also pointed out that Dubois had not complained to anyone of note about any sort of ailments, and appeared to be in good health.

She even attended a fan event in Hollywood a couple of weeks prior to her passing.

In 2006, Dubois spoke with Andy Cohen at the TV Land Awards about her career, particularly how her Good Times character had helped redefine how black women were portrayed on television.


"My job as Willona was to make it right, fast and funny," Dubois explained (via BravoTV). "It was a wonderful thing that happened. It changed the scene for the type of black woman being shown. The wigs, the hats, my everything was a dream come true. I used to teach acting in New York City and I taught the kids how to present themselves, show them the best. Every dream I had came to fruition through Good Times, so those kids could watch me on TV and see me applying all I taught them."

Good Times first premiered on CBS back in 1974, and featured TV's African American two-parent family sitcom. It ran for six seasons until it was canceled in 1979.