‘Cosby Show’ Alum Geoffrey Owens Says He Doesn’t Want To Get Acting Jobs Just Because He Works At Trader Joe’s

The actor says no one should feel sorry for him.

Larry Busacca / Getty Images

The actor says no one should feel sorry for him.

Geoffrey Owens is speaking out in the aftermath of a news article that shamed him for working at Trader Joe’s. The former Cosby Show actor appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America to set the record straight on why he works at the grocery store chain and why he doesn’t want to receive “pity” acting job offers just because he traded his acting career for a day job at Trader.

Owens, who played Huxtable son-in-law Elvin Tibideaux on The Cosby Show from 1985 to 1992, was recently “spotted” working as a cashier at a Trader Joe’s in Clifton, New Jersey.

An article in the Daily Mail was published with the headline, “From learning lines to serving the long line!” The job-shaming story also described Owens as wearing an ID badge and a “Trader Joe’s T-shirt with stain marks on the front as he weighed a bag of potatoes.”

The former NBC star received a flood of support from other actors, including Justine Bateman and Blair Underwood. In the new GMA interview, Owens admitted he was “really devastated” over the sensationalized story until fans and fellow celebrities defended him.

Owens, who worked at the grocery store chain for 15 months before quitting over the recent attention, revealed he took the job because he wanted “flexibility” in order to continue his work in the entertainment business.

“People recognized me every day and they were very, very cool about it,” Owens said of his job at the popular grocery store.

Now, the actor says he hopes his experience will help others be more sensitive to job-shaming and the value of hard work no matter what the field.

“I hope that this period that we’re in now, where we have a heightened sensitivity about that, and a reevaluation of what it means to work and the idea that some jobs are better than others — that’s actually not true. There is no job that’s better than another job. It might pay better, it might have better benefits, it might look better on a resume and on paper. But actually, it’s not better. Every job is worthwhile and valuable.”

Owens also revealed that while there is some renewed “interest” in him in the acting world amid all of the recent hoopla, he would never want to be offered an acting role just because of his recent headlines. The Yale graduate said he would only want an acting job after an audition to see if he is the right person for the role.

“No one should feel sorry for me,” Owens added. “I’ve had a great life. I’ve had a great career. I’ve had a career that most actors would die for. So no one has to feel sorry for me. I’m doing fine!”

Geoffrey Owens’ IMDB.com profile reveals he has worked steadily since his recurring role on The Cosby Show. More recently, the 57-year-old actor has appeared on The Blacklist, Blue Bloods, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and the Sarah Jessica Parker HBO series, Divorce. Owens’ latest TV role came this year in an episode of the CBS detective drama, Elementary.