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Look At God! ‘Cosby Show’ alum Geoffrey Owens Shamed For Trader Joes Gig, Tyler Perry Steps In & Offers Him A Role

Photo by Desiree Navarro/WireImage & Andrew H. Walker/FilmMagic

Sometimes you just need a little faith! After celebs, actors (with and without work) and basically anyone with a job, rallied behind former ‘Cosby Show’ star Geoffrey Owens, his story took off. And one very special person, Tyler Perry, heard the outcry and offered him an acting gig in Perry’s next production.

A fan spotted Geoffrey Owens, 57, who played Sondra’s husband Elvin Tibideaux, bagging groceries at a New Jersey Trader Joes and the articles seemed to insinuate the actor hit rock bottom and ended up as a grocery store cashier. With lines like, “the former star wore a Trader Joes t-shirt with stain marks on the front as he weighed a bag of potatoes..” and this quote from the woman that snapped the picture “it was a shock to see him working there and looking the way he did…I was like, ‘Wow, all those years of doing the show and you ended up as a cashier.’ ”


The tasteless editorial, without any context for how hard it is for actors in between gigs, struck a nerve across social media. With many entertainers sharing their own humbling stories of doing whatever it takes to make ends meet. Why should an honest living be shamed?

Perry saw all of this unfolding and offered him a role one of his upcoming productions. He tweeted, “#GeoffreyOwens I’m about to start shooting OWN’s number one drama next week! Come join us!!! I have so much respect for people who hustle between gigs. The measure of a true artist.”

Since the initial article, Owens shared his own story via “Good Morning America” Tuesday morning. In the interview, he expressed the embarrassment and shame he felt after being exposed as a Trader Joes employee (after 15 months on the job). But after the overwhelming support from fans and actors across the country, he quickly shook it off and responded with these words.

“There’s no job that’s better than another job. It might pay better. It might have better benefits. It might look better on a resume … but actually, it’s not better. Every job is worthwhile and valuable.”

Owens is acting, teaching, directing and working for Traders Joes. He needed money to support his family and he needed the flexibility to continue acting. And, Owens hopes this added exposure will lead to more auditions but absolutely no handouts. He wants to book his next gig based on the merit of his work.

TELL US: Are some jobs better than others? Or are you proud no matter the pay?

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