Oz Changed Actor's Mind on TV

Lance Reddick also starred in 'The Wire,' and 'John Wick' Films
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 17, 2023 4:20 PM CDT
Lance Reddick Starred in The Wire , John Wick Films
Lance Reddick appears at the world premiere of "John Wick: Chapter 3-Parabellum" in New York in 2019.   (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

Lance Reddick, a character actor who specialized in intense, icy, and possibly sinister authority figures on TV and film, including The Wire, Fringe, and the John Wick franchise, died Friday. He was 60. His publicist attributed the death to natural causes, the AP reports. Reddick was often put in a suit or a crisp uniform during his career, playing tall, taciturn and elegant men of distinction. He was best known for his role as straight-laced Lt. Cedric Daniels on the hit HBO series The Wire, in which his character was agonizingly trapped in the messy politics of the Baltimore police department.

"I'm an artist at heart. I feel that I’m very good at what I do," he told the Los Angeles Times in 2009. "When I went to drama school, I knew I was at least as talented as other students, but because I was a Black man and I wasn't pretty, I knew I would have to work my butt off to be the best that I would be, and to be noticed." Reddick also starred on the Fox series Fringe as a special agent Phillip Broyles, the smartly dressed Matthew Abaddon on Lost, and the multiskilled Continental Hotel concierge Charon in the John Wick movies. He appears in the fourth film in the series, which opens this month.

The Baltimore-born-and-raised Reddick was a Yale University drama school graduate who enjoyed some success after school by landing guest or recurring roles in TV series. It was in the fourth season of Oz, playing a doomed undercover officer sent to prison who becomes an addict, that Reddick had a career breakthrough. "Like so many actors, I was only interested in doing theater and film, he told the AP in 2011. "But Oz changed television." Reddick attended the prestigious Eastman School of Music, where he studied classical composition, and he played piano. His first album, the jazzy Contemplations and Remembrances, was released in 2011. Reddick is survived by his wife, Stephanie Reddick, and two children.

(Read more obituary stories.)

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