Brooklyn 99 actor died Andre Braugher


Known for portraying stoic police officers in two acclaimed but distinct television series—one a gripping drama and the other a comedy—Andre Braugher, a highly esteemed and prolific actor, passed away on Monday at the age of 61. His death was confirmed on Tuesday by his longtime publicist, Jennifer Allen, who stated that Braugher, residing in New Jersey, succumbed to a brief illness. The exact location of his passing was not disclosed.

With a commanding presence and simmering intensity, Braugher's authoritative demeanor made him a natural fit for police roles. These included his Emmy-winning portrayal as a detective in the television drama "Homicide: Life on the Street" and his comedic turn as the stern and sharp-tongued police captain in the sitcom "Brooklyn Nine-Nine."

Despite his affinity for law enforcement roles, Braugher, a graduate of Stanford University and a Juilliard-trained actor, enjoyed a diverse career encompassing stage, film, and television roles that extended beyond the confines of a badge or sidearm. His film debut in "Glory" (1989) as Cpl. Thomas Searles, a proper Boston intellectual turned soldier in the Civil War, showcased his commitment to meaningful roles. Braugher's big-screen repertoire also included roles in Spike Lee's "Get on the Bus" (1996), the 2006 remake of "Poseidon," and the espionage thriller "Salt" (2010).

In one of his final films, "She Said" (2022), Braugher added gravitas to the role of Dean Baquet, the former executive editor of The New York Times, in a drama about journalists exposing sexual abuse by Harvey Weinstein.

Braugher's impact extended to the stage, where he received an Obie Award in 1997 for his role in "Henry V." However, it was his portrayal of Detective Frank Pembleton in "Homicide: Life on the Street" that left an indelible mark. The gritty police procedural series ran on NBC from 1993 to 1999.

In his later years, Braugher expressed reservations about the idealized portrayal of police officers on television, reflecting on the pervasive influence of such narratives in shaping public perceptions, especially in light of the Black Lives Matter protests.

Born in Chicago on July 1, 1962, Braugher grew up on the city's West Side. Despite facing challenges in his upbringing, he pursued education at St. Ignatius College Prep and earned a scholarship to Stanford, where he initially studied mathematics. Despite his father's initial resistance to his chosen path in acting, Braugher pursued a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Juilliard School.

Andre Braugher's legacy encompasses a diverse and impactful career, leaving an indelible mark on the realms of drama, comedy, and societal reflection through his multifaceted performances.

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