For more than a decade, American actress Shari Belafonte was married to her college sweetheart Robert (Bob) Harper. They met at Carnegie Mellon University and fell in love. On May 21, 1977, they married.
Shari and Bob divorced in 1988 after thirteen years together, including eleven as husband and wife. But why did the couple break up? This is a fascinating story to share.
What is Shari Belafonte’s background?
Shari Belafonte is an American actress, model, writer, singer, and photographer who is best known for playing Julie Gillette in the ABC drama Hotel (1983-1988).
The New York native is one of only four cast members to have appeared in every single episode of the massively successful show’s 115 episodes.
She played Lisa Mott in Tyler Perry’s Sistas from 2019 to 2020.
Shari started as a model
Shari Belafonte is the Grammy-winning singer Harry Belafonte’s daughter. Harry is a well-known Jamaican-American pop singer who has earned the moniker “King of Calypso.”
Shari grew up in an entertainment-oriented family and always knew she wanted to be in show business. She began her career as a model, working for CoverGirl and appearing in several commercials, including one for Calvin Klein jeans. After winning her first role in ABC Weekend Specials titled The Big Hex of Little Lulu in 1979, she turned to acting.
Shari has made the transition from magazine covers to television screens
Following her debut acting gig, she appeared in several TV shows and films. The Misadventure of Sheriff Lobo (1981), Hart to Hart (1981), If You Could See What I Hear (1982), and Time Walker were some of the productions on which she worked during those years (1982).
Her acting career, on the other hand, really took off in 1983. She landed the role of Julie Gillette on Hotel, opposite Anne Baxter, James Brolin, Nathan Cook, and Connie Sellecca.
She went on to have a successful acting career, appearing in films and television shows like Fire, Ice, and Dynamite (1990), Gravedale High (1990), Beyond Reality (1991-1993), The Player (1992), Sonic The Hedgehog (1994), Hey Arnold! (1996-1997), Teacher Of The Year (2014), General Hospital (2016-2017), Say Yes (2018), Primrose Lane (2015), Plastic Daydream (2018), The Morning Show (2019), and Sistas (2019).
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Shari, who has appeared in over 45 films as an actor, also played Lupe the Wolf in Sonic The Hedgehog (1994). She also directed the 2019 TV series Chix On The Links, in addition to her acting credits.
Shari Belafonte has been pursuing her passion for photography for many years
Although Belafonte’s acting career has not waned, she has returned to her high school photography pastime since 1989. She told Dailynews in 2008 that she worked as a photographer and camera operator at the time. She went on to say in the interview that her photographer’s appearance astonished some people.
In essence, the interview report discussed Belafonte’s passion for photography and her technical expertise in the field, the latter of which she obtained after graduating from Carnegie Mellon with a degree in theater (production major).
She worked as a production assistant and assistant director on the East Coast after graduating. She then moved to Los Angeles to work as a publicist.
Sam Behrens is Shari’s husband. Shari met her current husband, actor Sam Behrens when reading a script for their film Murder by Numbers during Script Reading. Belafonte was asked to practice the screenplay with Behrens, who played the main character in the film.
Belafonte first turned down the offer. ‘We start Monday?’ she replied after meeting Behrens. Following that, the two’s connection evolved from that of first-time colleagues to that of lovers.
When Shari met Sam, she was still married to Bob, and Hollywood tabloids rushed to print headlines like “Belafonte quits spouse for a co-star.”
However, Shari revealed in a 1990s interview with People that she and Bob were already having marital troubles before Sam entered the scene. She said in the interview that Behrens approached her to disclose their affair with her husband rather than living with guilt and anguish.
When Belafonte ultimately offered to her husband that she keep her romance with Sam and her marriage with Bob, he wanted her to break up with Behrens, according to Belafonte. However, the actress took a different path. “A part of my existence had come to an end,” she recognized.
“Bob and I were on our way out, and Sam helped us out,” Shari counters. “It took me 30 years to realize that I’m not on this planet for anyone else.” Sam was the first person in my life who made me say, “Forget what everyone else says—I want it, and I’m going to get it.”
As a result, the couple legally and officially divorced in July 1988. The Murder by Numbers co-stars then took their romance with Behrens to the next level, marrying on the island of Barbados on December 31, 1989. Since then, they’ve been together.
Sam Behrens is Shari Belafonte’s husband
Sam Behrens is an American actor who is best known for playing Jake Meyer on the ABC daytime drama General Hospital (1983-1988). Ryan’s Hope, General Hospital, Sunset Beach, The Young and the Restless, Knots Landing, and the film Alive are among the films in which the six-foot-tall actor has played pivotal roles.
Sam married Shari for the second time after marrying Stanley Birnbaum on July 24, 1950, in Brooklyn, New York. He was previously married to actress Dale Kristien before meeting Shari.