'True Blood' ac­tor Nel­san El­lis dead at 39

Kuwait Times - - LIFESTYLE -

Nel­san El­lis, an ac­tor best known for his role in the vam­pire se­ries "True Blood," has died. He was 39 years old. The ac­tor died fol­low­ing com­pli­ca­tions from heart fail­ure, his man­ager told CNN. His por­trayal of Lafayette, a gay cook and medium, helped him spring onto the act­ing scene after his char­ac­ter be­came a fa­vorite of fans of the HBO drama, which ran from 2008 to 2014. "We were ex­tremely sad­dened to hear of the pass­ing of Nel­san El­lis," the HBO net­work said in a state­ment Satur­day. "Nel­san was a long-time mem­ber of the HBO fam­ily whose ground­break­ing por­trayal of Lafayette will be re­mem­bered fondly within the over­all legacy of True Blood."

"Nel­san will be dearly missed by his fans and all of us at HBO." As news of his death spread many fans posted a clip from the show where El­lis's char­ac­ter bursts out of his res­tau­rant kitchen to con­front a ta­ble of ho­mo­pho­bic din­ers. An alum­nus of New York's pres­ti­gious Juil­liard per­form­ing arts con­ser­va­tory, El­lis's cred­its in­clude sil­ver screen ap­pear­ances in 2009's "The Soloist" as well as 2011's Os­caraward win­ning film "The Help." "My heart breaks for his kids and his fam­ily," wrote his co-star in that film Oc­tavia Spencer in an In­sta­gram post. "He was sooooo funny. I miss him."

The Illi­nois na­tive also de­picted Martin Luther King Jr in "The But­ler," re­leased in 2013. "True Blood" co-star Joe Manganiello took to Twit­ter to pay tribute to the late ac­tor: "Crushed to­day by the loss of my friend and cast­mate Nel­san El­lis." "He was a won­der­ful per­son, a pioneer, and a one of a kind artist." — AFP

Peo­ple gather at the Arena Sta­dium in Am­s­ter­dam dur­ing the last edi­tion of the dance fes­ti­val Sen­sa­tion, The Fi­nal, on Satur­day. — AFP

In this Mon­day, July 21, 2014 file photo, ac­tor Nel­san El­lis at­tends the world pre­miere of "Get On Up" at the Apollo The­ater in New York. — AP

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