Wendell Pierce has paid a heartfelt tribute to The wire co-star Michael K. Williams, who was found dead Monday at age 54.
Pierce played Detective Bunk Moreland for Williams’ Omar Little, with the duo’s couch scene in Season 3’s “Homecoming” (embedded below) often cited as one of the best moments of the acclaimed HBO crime drama.
“The depth of my love for this brother can only be matched by the depth of my pain in learning of his losss,” said Pierce at the beginning of a long Twitter thread. “A tremendously talented man with the ability to give voice to the human condition and portray the lives of those whose humanity is rarely exalted until he sings their truth.
“His name was Michael K. Williams,” he continued. “He shared his secret fears with me and then stepped into his acting with real courage, acting in the face of fear, not in its absence…. He was proud of the artist he had become and long asked for my advice after he hadn’t surpassed one yet [insight] I could have shared. Always truthful, never false. The friendliest persons. Like two naughty children, we laughed and joked when we met.”
Referring to the bank scene where Bunk tries but fails to get information from Omar, then calls him out as one of the “predatory mothers” representing the worst in the community, Pierce said, “we wanted to take that moment in time together and say something about black men Our struggles with ourselves, internally and with each other For me and Mike we had nothing but respect So for you my brother Mike there is a little comfort I know you knew how much we loved you.’
Pierce concluded his tribute by quoting the playwright Arthur Miller:
“There is a certain immortality involved in theatre, created not by monuments and books, but by the knowledge that an actor retains until the day of his death that on one particular afternoon, in an empty and dusty theatre, he cast the shadow of a being who was not himself but the distillation of all he had ever perceived; all the unsingable heart song that the common man may feel but never utter, he voiced. And thus the ages somehow come together.”
“Mike… you’ve gone with the ages,” he added. “Farewell My Friend, Love Wendell”
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