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Actor Michael K. Williams Dead at 54

Actor Michael K. Williams, best known for his iconic portrayal of stickup artist Omar Little on the hit
Photograph by Eli Joshua Ade/ Courtesy HBO

crime drama “The Wire,” is dead at the age of 54 according to the New York Post

The paper reported that the talented thespian — who had just signed to star in a biopic about two-time world heavyweight boxing champion George Foreman as his trainer and mentor Doc Broadus — was found dead in his Brooklyn penthouse Monday afternoon.

Reportedly drug paraphernalia was found at the scene, suggesting he may have fatally OD’d, possibly from heroin or fentanyl according to the Post’s sources.

“It is with deep sorrow that the family announces the passing of Emmy-nominated actor Michael Kenneth Williams,” William’s rep Marianna Shafran said in a statement confirming the death. “They ask for your privacy while grieving this unsurmountable loss.”
Williams had previously struggled with drugs. In 2016 the actor told the host of NPR’s “Fresh Air” Terry Gross that playing intense characters sometimes takes a psychic toll on him:

 When I wear these characters to the extent that I wear them to, that [energy’s] gotta go somewhere,” he says. “The dark energy of Omar Little, for example, “was a little too close to home.

A five-time Emmy nominee, the Brooklyn, New York, native was also well-known for his role as Chalky White in HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire,” and is a 2021 Emmy Award nominee as best supporting actor for his role in the network’s pandemic hit “Lovecraft Country.”

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