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Seven Times Michael K. Williams Blew Us Away With His Performance

Hollywood and our community are mourning the shocking death of actor, Michael K. Williams, who was found dead in his Brooklyn apartment on Labor Day. With an outpour of love and support from the likes of Viola Davis, Colman Domingo, and many others, Williams' talent could not be denied, which is apparent by those he touched through his vulnerable performances. From the hit show The Wire to Lovecraft Country, the Emmy award-nominated actor's roles were felt through the screen, leaving viewers in awe of his craft.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Williams began his entertainment career after being inspired by Janet Jackson's hit song and video, Rhythm Nation. He left school, quit his job, and began his journey to become a dancer. That journey found Michael working as a backup dancer alongside pop icons such as Madonna, George Michael, and choreographing Crystal Waters' 90's hit 100% Pure Love. It was in 1996 that the late rapper, Tupac Shakur discovered Michael and cast him in the film, Bullet, where he played High Top, the brother to Shakur's Tank, character.

Macro Founder and producer, Charles D. King, shows love to the late actor.

Although widely known for playing Omar Little in HBO's hit 2000's drama The Wire, which is considered one of the best TV shows ever created, Williams range was that of legends with over 100 acting credits to his name. And as many of his fans mourn, his performances throughout the years will live on forever.

Here are seven times Michael K. Williams blew us away with his performance.

Williams portrayed Monrose Freeman in HBO's supernatural drama, Lovecraft Country. Throughout the first couple of episodes, fans speculated that his character hid a secret. That secret was revealed in episode 7, when his character exchanged words with his son, Atticus Freeman, played by Jonathan Majors, about his sexuality. Williams was praised for his commitment to taking on roles that show the complexities of Black men coming to terms with their identity.

In 2018, HBO and The Atlantic joined forces for a series of short films that was described to "challenge our certainties." For Michael K. Williams, his performance, although quick, was hailed for showing his brilliance on screen. 'Typecast' showed Williams playing multiple roles that questioned how Hollywood saw the actor as a Black man, well after his famous portrayal of Omar.

Just this past summer, Michael helped honor another legend gone too soon. Rap Icon, DMX, was remembered at this year's BET awards. During the musical performance, which included Hip-Hop heavyweights such as Swizz Beats, Method Man, and The Lox, Williams joined in, immortalizing the late rapper through his sound and image. After the performance, many hoped Williams would be cast in a Biopic of DMX's life.

Michael showed us he still had his dance moves during this impromptu dance performance on a sunny day in a New York City, park. His energy was infectious as he celebrated life while bringing smiles to many who spectated.

With five seasons of The Wire under his belt, Michael's portrayal as Omar Little, a criminal with a moral code, introduced an actor that would go on to steal each scene that he was in. When Little took on the courtroom, many fans were not ready for what he had to say, and as this HBO replay clip states," Omar was just being Omar."

The relationship between Michael and HBO ran deep and continued into 2010, with the premiere of Boardwalk Empire, the drama that told the story of Atlantic City at the dawn of Prohibition. His character, Chalky White, was a racketeer and the unofficial leader of the African-American community in Atlantic City. This dinner scene showed the layers that Williams was able to capture as he held a mirror to what many people grew up to know as the Black male Father during that time.

Michael portrayed Bobby McCray in Ava DuVernay's Netflix limited series When They See Us. Playing a Father who wanted to protect his family, Williams' performance was heartbreaking, showing the dynamic between father and son, in an impossible situation. "I remember our work on the work, always connected and communicating and excavating and building because you were so open and ready to give your all," Ava said, remembering Williams. "I remember you sending me a picture of yourself as a young man sharing with me that the boys whose story we were telling were a reflection of you." She went on to say, referring to the exonerated 5.

As fans and Hollywood continue to celebrate Michael K. Williams' life, there will be other projects that are coming soon that he was able to finish before his unfortunate death.

Sleep well, King.


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