Actor. As a child he appeared in episodes of "The Jeffersons" and "Good Times" before attaining celebrity status as a star of the NBC situation comedy "Diff'rent Strokes", where his character's usual retort to his brother (played by Todd Bridges) "What'choo talkin' 'bout, Willis?" became a national catchphrase. Coleman earned as much as $100,000 per episode, but was left with a quarter of his original net worth after paying his parents and advisers, and he later successfully sued his parents and advisers for mishandling his money. After "Diff'rent Strokes" he starred in feature films and made-for-TV movies including "On the Right Track" and "The Kid with the Broken Halo". Coleman continued to work occasionally in TV and movies, but eventually declared bankruptcy and worked as a security guard and in other low-profile jobs. He suffered from a congenital kidney disease which halted his growth at an early age, leaving him with a small stature (less than five feet tall) and a childlike appearance even as he grew into adulthood. He underwent two kidney transplants, one in 1973 and one in 1984, and required daily dialysis. Coleman died at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center after being removed from life support following a brain hemorrhage he suffered at his home.
Bio by: Bill McKern