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Andre Keith Braugher (pron.: /ˈbrər/; July 1, 1962 - December 11, 2023) was an American actor. He was best known for his roles as Cassiel in City of Angels, Thomas Searles in the film Glory, as the fiery detective Frank Pembleton on Homicide: Life on the Street from 1993 to 1998 and again in the 2000 made-for-TV film, and as Owen Thoreau Jr. on the TNT show Men of a Certain Age. On Brooklyn Nine-Nine, he plays Captain Raymond Holt.

Early Life and Education

Braugher, the youngest of four children, was born in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Sally, a postal worker, and Floyd Braugher, a heavy-equipment operator.[1] He attended St. Ignatius College Prep and later graduated from Stanford University with a B.A. in theater in 1984. He then attended the Juilliard School's Drama Division (Group 17: 1984-1988),[2] graduating with a Master of Fine Arts degree in 1988.[3] He was acknowledged as the Most Outstanding Theater Student at graduation.[citation needed]


Braugher's first film role was in the 1989's Glory as Thomas Searles, a free, educated black from the North who joins the first black regiment in the Union Army.

He subsequently moved on to a role on the television series Homicide: Life on the Street as Det. Frank Pembleton, a self-righteous, fiery, unyielding, Jesuit-educated police detective. Playing opposite Kyle Secor (who portrayed Det. Tim Bayliss), Braugher became the series' breakout star. He received Television Critics Association awards for individual achievement in drama in 1997 and 1998. He was nominated for an Emmy Award for best actor in a drama series in 1996 and 1998, winning in the latter year.

He left Homicide after its sixth season but returned for the successful reunion television film. He has also starred in the films City of Angels and Poseidon. He played Kojak's side-kick in the late-1980s ABC television film revival of Kojak.

In 1997 he was selected by People as one of the "50 Most Beautiful People in the World".

At New York City's Shakespeare in the Park Festival from June 18 to July 14, 1996 at the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park, Braugher played the title role in Henry V for which he received an Obie Award. In 2000, he played the title role as Ben Gideon in the series Gideon's Crossing, which lasted one season.

In 2002, Braugher narrated the award-winning, PBS-broadcast documentary Muhammad: Legacy of a Prophet, produced by Unity Productions Foundation and recently re-issued.

He played Detective Marcellus Washington in the TV series Hack from 2002-2004. In 2006, Braugher starred as Nick Atwater in the mini-series Thief for FX Networks, winning a second Emmy for his performance. He portrayed General Hager in the 2007 film Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.

Braugher appeared on the TV series House, M.D. as Dr. Nolan, a psychiatrist who helps House recover from his addiction to Vicodin. He also appeared in the TNT series Men of a Certain Age, for which he was nominated twice as Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series. He also voiced the villain Darkseid in the animated film, Superman/Batman: Apocalypse.[4]

Braugher co-starred in the Manhattan Theatre Club's production of The Whipping Man, off-Broadway, for a limited run from January–March 2011. He narrated the introduction to the Olympic Games on NBC from 2006 to 2010, succeeding James Earl Jones in the role.[5] Braugher also narrated James Patterson's Alex Cross book Cross Fire (2010).

He has a recurring role as defense attorney Bayard Ellis on Law & Order SVU, and appears as the lead character, Capt. Marcus Chaplin, in ABC's military drama TV series Last Resort.

Personal Life

In 1991, Braugher married Ami Brabson, an actress who later played Pembleton's wife Mary on Homicide. The couple has three sons: Michael (1992), Isaiah (1997), and John Wesley (JW) (2003). They reside in South Orange, New Jersey. Braugher and his family are Unitarian Universalists.

Braugher died from lung cancer on December 11, 2023, having been diagnosed with it a few months before.



  1. ^ Andre Braugher Film Reference bio
  2. ^ "Alumni News"The Juilliard School. September 2007.
  3. ^ "Andre Braugher"All Movie Guide. The New York Times. Retrieved April 3, 2012.
  4. ^ "News". Superman Homepage. Retrieved October 29, 2012.
  5. ^ 2006 XX Olympics Opening Ceremony: NBC's Six Minutes of Passion, Four Hours of Fire

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