Nelsan Ellis - Film & Theater Personalities, Timeline and Facts

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Nelsan Ellis's Personal Details

Nelsan Ellis was an American actor known for his role in the series ‘True Blood’

InformationDetail
BirthdayNovember 30, 1977
Died onJuly 8, 2017
NationalityAmerican
FamousTrue Blood Cast, Film & Theater Personalities, Actors
City/StateIllinois
SiblingsAlice Nellis, Babon Ellis, Lakeeia Thomson, Maurice Turne, Shaentika Beard, Tianna Thompson, Tommie Lee Thompson, Yvonne Ellis
Universities
  • Jess Lanier High School
  • McAdory High School
  • Thornridge High School
  • Juilliard School
  • Columbia College Chicago
Birth PlaceHarvey
Height178cm
GenderMale
FatherTommie Lee Thompson
MotherJackie Ellis
Sun SignSagittarius
Born inHarvey
Famous asActor
Died at Age39

// Famous Actors

Nelsan Ellis's photo

Who is Nelsan Ellis?

Nelsan Ellis was an American actor who was popularly known for portraying the character of ‘Lafayette Reynolds’ in the American dark fantasy horror series ‘True Blood’. Ellis won two Satellite Awards, one Ewwy Award, and one NewNowNext Award for his role in the show. He played one of the lead characters, ‘Shinwell Johnson’, in Robert Doherty’s procedural drama series ‘Elementary’. Ellis was also a big part of the American crime drama television series ‘The Inside’ in the mid-2000s. During his fifteen-year long acting career, Ellis had appeared in numerous feature films as well. He portrayed ‘Eddie Sweat’ in the biographical sports drama film ‘Secretariat’ and appeared in the historical drama film ‘The Butler’, playing the role of ‘Martin Luther King, Jr.’ Despite his professional success, the actor’s personal life was a troubled one. Raised by a single mother in poverty, he became addicted to alcohol which ultimately ruined his life and led to his unfortunate death. He portrayed ‘Tyrik’ in his last film ‘True to the Game’ which was released after his death.

// Famous True Blood Cast

Career

Nelsan Ellis began his journey in the show business in 2002, with a role in a short film named ‘Lost’. Nothing came his way for the next three years until he appeared in a television film ‘Warm Springs’ as ‘Roy Collier’. He was offered the role of ‘Carter Howard’ in the American crime drama television series ‘The Inside’. Ellis was part of the show between 2005 and 2006, appearing in twelve episodes. He also appeared in ‘Veronica Mars’ and ‘Without a Trace’ in guest roles.

In 2008, Ellis was offered a role which later established his credentials as an actor. He was approached by the makers of ‘True Blood’, an American dark fantasy horror television series, to play the role of ‘Lafayette Reynolds’. Ellis’ character was of a short order cook who is also a drug dealer. Initially his character was killed at the beginning of the second chapter; however, the popularity of the character forced the makers to revive him and he went on to become a regular in the show. His character was bisexual and according to him, he had to put on a lot of make-up for this role. It took him a few episodes to get a proper hold of his character.

Ellis won the Satellite Award from the International Press Academy in the best supporting actor category in 2008, and a year later, he won the NewNowNext Award. He was also given the Satellite Award for ‘Best Cast – Television Series’ and an Ewwy Award for best supporting actor in a drama series.

Ellis portrayed the role of ‘Eddie Sweat’ in the American biographical sports drama film ‘Secretariat’. The film was based on the life of the racehorse, Secretariat, the winner of the Triple Crown in 1973, and featured John Malkovich and Diane Lane among others. He appeared in the 2012 political thriller drama ‘The Reluctant Fundamentalist’ alongside Riz Ahmed and Kate Hudson. He also appeared in ‘The Butler’, an American historical drama film, where he played the role of ‘Martin Luther King, Jr.’ In 2015, Ellis appeared in the thriller film ‘The Stanford Prison Experiment’ as ‘Jesse Fletcher’.

Nelsan Ellis played one of the lead characters in the procedural drama series ‘Elementary’, created by Robert Doherty. He portrayed the character of ‘Shinwell Johnson’, an ex-convict and gang member who was once a patient of Dr. Watson. Ellis was part of the show for the fifth season between 2016 and 2017. Just before his death, Ellis had finished working in two films, ‘True to the Game’ and ‘Roxanne Roxanne’, which were released posthumously.

Personal Life

Nelsan Ellis was born in Harvey, Illinois, on November 30, 1977, to Tommie Lee Thompson and Jackie Ellis. His parents got divorced and Ellis was raised by his single mother along with his siblings. He went to Jess Lanier High School and McAdory High School before enrolling at the Thornridge High School in Dolton. In 2004, he earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from The Juilliard School. He was also an alumnus of the Illinois State University.

He was married and had two children: a son Breon Ellis and a daughter who was just an infant at the time of Ellis’ untimely death.

Death

Ellis struggled with alcoholism and was trying to get rid of his drinking problem in the days before his death. According to his family, he was suffering from alcohol withdrawal syndrome. He died of heart failure in Woodhull Medical Center, New York, on July 8, 2017; he was just 39 years old at the time of his death.

// Famous Film & Theater Personalities

Nelsan Ellis biography timelines

  • // 1973
    Ellis portrayed the role of ‘Eddie Sweat’ in the American biographical sports drama film ‘Secretariat’. The film was based on the life of the racehorse, Secretariat, the winner of the Triple Crown in 1973, and featured John Malkovich and Diane Lane among others. He appeared in the 2012 political thriller drama ‘The Reluctant Fundamentalist’ alongside Riz Ahmed and Kate Hudson. He also appeared in ‘The Butler’, an American historical drama film, where he played the role of ‘Martin Luther King, Jr.’ In 2015, Ellis appeared in the thriller film ‘The Stanford Prison Experiment’ as ‘Jesse Fletcher’.
  • // 30th Nov 1977
    Nelsan Ellis was born in Harvey, Illinois, on November 30, 1977, to Tommie Lee Thompson and Jackie Ellis. His parents got divorced and Ellis was raised by his single mother along with his siblings. He went to Jess Lanier High School and McAdory High School before enrolling at the Thornridge High School in Dolton. In 2004, he earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from The Juilliard School. He was also an alumnus of the Illinois State University.
  • // 2002
    Nelsan Ellis began his journey in the show business in 2002, with a role in a short film named ‘Lost’. Nothing came his way for the next three years until he appeared in a television film ‘Warm Springs’ as ‘Roy Collier’. He was offered the role of ‘Carter Howard’ in the American crime drama television series ‘The Inside’. Ellis was part of the show between 2005 and 2006, appearing in twelve episodes. He also appeared in ‘Veronica Mars’ and ‘Without a Trace’ in guest roles.
  • // 2008
    In 2008, Ellis was offered a role which later established his credentials as an actor. He was approached by the makers of ‘True Blood’, an American dark fantasy horror television series, to play the role of ‘Lafayette Reynolds’. Ellis’ character was of a short order cook who is also a drug dealer. Initially his character was killed at the beginning of the second chapter; however, the popularity of the character forced the makers to revive him and he went on to become a regular in the show. His character was bisexual and according to him, he had to put on a lot of make-up for this role. It took him a few episodes to get a proper hold of his character.
  • // 2016
    Nelsan Ellis played one of the lead characters in the procedural drama series ‘Elementary’, created by Robert Doherty. He portrayed the character of ‘Shinwell Johnson’, an ex-convict and gang member who was once a patient of Dr. Watson. Ellis was part of the show for the fifth season between 2016 and 2017. Just before his death, Ellis had finished working in two films, ‘True to the Game’ and ‘Roxanne Roxanne’, which were released posthumously.
  • // 2017
    Ellis struggled with alcoholism and was trying to get rid of his drinking problem in the days before his death. According to his family, he was suffering from alcohol withdrawal syndrome. He died of heart failure in Woodhull Medical Center, New York, on July 8, 2017; he was just 39 years old at the time of his death.

// Famous American

Nelsan Ellis's FAQ

  • What is Nelsan Ellis birthday?

    Nelsan Ellis was born at 1977-11-30

  • When was Nelsan Ellis died?

    Nelsan Ellis was died at 2017-07-08

  • Which age was Nelsan Ellis died?

    Nelsan Ellis was died at age 39

  • Where is Nelsan Ellis's birth place?

    Nelsan Ellis was born in Harvey

  • What is Nelsan Ellis nationalities?

    Nelsan Ellis's nationalities is American

  • Who is Nelsan Ellis siblings?

    Nelsan Ellis's siblings is Alice Nellis, Babon Ellis, Lakeeia Thomson, Maurice Turne, Shaentika Beard, Tianna Thompson, Tommie Lee Thompson, Yvonne Ellis

  • What was Nelsan Ellis universities?

    Nelsan Ellis studied at Jess Lanier High School, McAdory High School, Thornridge High School, Juilliard School, Columbia College Chicago

  • How tall is Nelsan Ellis?

    Nelsan Ellis's height is 178

  • Who is Nelsan Ellis's father?

    Nelsan Ellis's father is Tommie Lee Thompson

  • Who is Nelsan Ellis's mother?

    Nelsan Ellis's mother is Jackie Ellis

  • What is Nelsan Ellis's sun sign?

    Nelsan Ellis is Sagittarius

  • How famous is Nelsan Ellis?

    Nelsan Ellis is famouse as Actor

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