Andre Braugher, Emmy-winning actor who starred in ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine,’ dies at 61

Andre Braugher, Emmy-winning actor who starred in ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine,’ dies at 61

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Andre Braugher, the Emmy-winning actor best known for his roles on the series “Homicide: Life on The Street” and “Brooklyn 99,” died Monday at age 61.

Braugher’s publicist Jennifer Allen confirmed his death to the trade publication Variety.

The Chicago-born actor had his breakthrough role in 1989’s “Glory,” starring alongside Morgan Freeman and Denzel Washington, who won an Oscar for the film about an all-Black army regiment during the Civil War.

Despite the part, he told The Associated Press in 2019 that he struggled to find work in a Hollywood where roles for African American actors were “few and far between. Period.”

Andre Braugher attends NBC’s Comedy Starts Here at NeueHouse Hollywood on September 16, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Rodin Eckenroth/FilmMagic)

But he would establish himself with the role of Det. Frank Pembleton, which he would play for seven seasons in “Homicide: Life on the Street,” a gritty police drama on NBC based on a book by David Simon, who would go on to create “The Wire.”

He would win his first career Emmy for the role, taking the trophy for lead actor in a drama series in 1998. He would win his second for lead actor in a miniseries or movie for the 2006 limited series “Thief” on FX. Braugher would be nominated for 11 Emmys overall.

Years later he would play a very different kind of cop on a very different kind of show, shifting to comedy as Capt. Ray Holt on the Andy Samberg-starring Fox series “Brooklyn Nine-Nine.” It would run for eight seasons from 2013 to 2021.

Though he’d dipped his toe into comedy in the TNT dramedy “Men of a Certain Age,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” still represented a major shift for Braugher, who was known for acting in dark and heavy dramas.

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“I just felt as though it was an opportunity to do something strikingly different from the rest of my career,” Braugher told the AP. “I like it because it just simply opens up my mind and forces me to think in a different way. So I think I’ve become much more sort of supple as an actor, and more open to the incredible number of possibilities of how to play a scene.”

Braugher was married for more than 30 years to his “Homicide” co-star Ami Brabson. They had three sons. His death was first reported by Deadline.