“The Wire” creator David Simon wrote in on Twitter that he was “gutted.” Williams played Omar on the classic HBO series.
“Michael was a fine man and a rare talent and on our journey together he always deserved the best words. And today those words won’t come,” Simon wrote.
Wendell Pierce, who starred with Williams in “The Wire” as Detective Bunk Moreland, wrote, “The depth of my love for this brother, can only be matched by the depth of my pain learning of his loss. A immensely talented man with the ability to give voice to the human condition portraying the lives of those whose humanity is seldom elevated until he sings their truth. If you don’t know, you better ask somebody. His name was Michael K. Williams. He shared with me his secret fears then stepped out into his acting with true courage, acting in the face of fear, not in the absence of it. It took me years to learn what Michael had in abundance.”
He continued: “He was proud of the artist he had become, asking for my advice long after he had surpassed any incite I could have shared, Always truthful, never inauthentic. The kindest of persons. Like two mischievous kids, we would laugh & joke whenever we would meet. Like Baltimore years ago, THE WIRE brought us together and immortalized Omar & Bunk in that ‘scene’ on a park bench. But for us we aimed to take that moment in time together and say something about Black men. Our struggle with ourselves, internally, and each other. For me & Mike we had nothing but respect. So to you, my brother Mike, there is a small comfort that I know, you knew how much we loved you.”
Williams was found dead at his home in Brooklyn on Monday. He was 54.
“I remember the times you’d come on set even when you weren’t on the call sheet. Just to share a hug. To cheer us on. Strolling in like the King that you were. For just a flash to give some love — then gone. I remember nights out in NYC that summer and how you were so loved by the folks in your city. 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. I remember you sending me a picture of yourself as a young man and sharing with me that the boys whose story we were telling were a reflection of you — and we were going to get it right,” Duvernay wrote.
Isiah Whitlock Jr. wrote, “Shocked and saddened by the death of Michael K Williams. One of the nicest brothers on the planet with the biggest heart. An amazing actor and soul. May you RIP. God bless.”
Aisha Tyler wrote, “Michael K Williams was a beautiful, passionate, expansive soul. I felt so lucky to have known him, and we were all so fortunate to have enjoyed his incredible talent. He burned so very bright. Rest in power, MKW. You will forever be The King.”