J. D. Williams (born May 22, 1978) is an American actor known for his starring roles in the HBO television programs Oz as Kenny Wangler, The Wire as Bodie Broadus and Pootie Tang as Froggy, Surviving Family (2012) as Bobby, The Good Wife (2010-2015) as Dexter, and in the main cast of Saints & Sinners. He also starred in Blood Brother (2018) as Kayvon.
J. D. Williams
|Born||May 22, 1978|
Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
|Known for||"Bodie Broadus" in The Wire and Kenny Wangler in Oz|
Early life edit
Williams was born in Newark, New Jersey. He attended Newark Arts High School, a performing arts public school in Newark. He portrayed a biracial 15-year-old dealing with racism and his father's infidelity in the play A.M. Sunday in late 2003 at Baltimore's Centerstage theater. He had a number of cameos and leading roles in R&B and hip-hop music videos between 2002 and 2005.
Williams appeared in Homicide: Life on the Street, a show based on a book by The Wire creator David Simon, where he guest-starred as Casper in the episode "The Why Chromosome". He had a small guest starring role in The Sopranos episode "46 Long" as Special K, an incompetent stickup man and one of Brendan Filone's goons. He went on to play series regular, inmate Kenny Wangler, in the first four seasons of Oz. He then appeared in HBOs The Wire as Bodie Broadus, a Barksdale Organization drug dealer who slowly rises through the ranks throughout the seasons. In preparation for the role, he walked around Baltimore's inner city during the middle of the night a few days before the first taping; talking about this to AllHipHop, Williams stated "it was like 12 or 1:00 in the morning. I just threw on a black hoodie and walked around. I went to one of their hoods and watched that night. I learned not to do that no more, I was lucky I made it back that night." He is older than his character by 8 years.
According to his original HBO bio, he is credited with appearing in the film Graffiti Bridge, but a 2003 interview with AllHipHop revealed that Williams was not in the movie. The page no longer exists, however. Tevin Campbell filled the cameo role with which Williams was credited.
Williams has had leading roles or cameo appearances in a number of R&B and hip-hop music videos. He has appeared as himself, a love interest, and characters resembling his role as a drug dealer on The Wire.
In 2012, Williams had a major supporting role in the indie film Surviving Family as the ex-boyfriend of the main character. His character was a wounded veteran of the war in Iraq who had lost an eye in an IED attack and suffered from PTSD.
|1994||Death Riders||Buzz Saw|
|1999||The 24 Hour Woman||Toy Store Clerk|
|2002||Mr. Smith Gets a Hustler||Abe|
|Durdy Game||Little Man||Video|
|The Second Line||Natt||Short|
|2008||Cash Rules||Spike (J.D.)||Video|
|2011||Happy New Year||Jerome|
|After Hours: The Movie||D.C.|
|2013||Chinese Puzzle||Le barman|
|The Lost Book Of Rap||Hassen||Short|
|2014||An American in Hollywood||Dorian|
|Cymbeline||Quarry Cop 2|
|2016||Guns and Grams||BK|
|The Choir||Police Officer||Short|
|2017||Served Film||Uncle Q||Short film|
|Clipped Wings, They Do Fly||Toby Johnson|
|2019||The Probe||Stink||TV movie|
|2020||One Sweet Night||Ossian Sweet||Short|
|1997||New York Undercover||Victor||Episode: "Fade Out"|
|1997–2000||Oz||Kenny Wangler||Guest: season 1-2, Supporting Cast: season 3-4|
|1998||Law & Order||2nd Kid||Episode: "Castoff"|
|1999||The Sopranos||Special K||Episode: "46 Long"|
|Trinity||Malik||Episode: "Breaking In, Breaking Out, Breaking Up, Breaking Down"|
|Homicide: Life on the Street||Damon 'Casper' Kelly||Episode: "The Why Chromosome"|
|Third Watch||Pee Wee||Episode: "Welcome to Camelot"|
|2000||Sex and the City||Sweet Sauce||Episode: "No Ifs, Ands or Butts"|
|2001||100 Centre Street||William Floyd||Episode: "Bobby & Cynthia" & "Queenie and Joe"|
|Big Apple||Derrick||Episode: "A Ministering Angel"|
|2002–06||The Wire||Preston 'Bodie' Broadus||Recurring cast: Season 1-2, main cast: Season 3-4|
|2007||The Kill Point||Marshall O'Brien, Jr./Mr. Cat||Main cast|
|2009||Nite Tales: The Series||Rapper||Episode: "Trapped"|
|2010–11||Detroit 1-8-7||Pup Clemmons||Episode: "Royal Bubbles/Needle Drop" & "Stone Cold"|
|2010–15||The Good Wife||Dexter Roja||Recurring cast: Season 2 & 4 & 6|
|2012||Blue Bloods||Benjamin Banks||Episode: "No Questions Asked"|
|2014||The Following||Carlos||Recurring cast: Season 2|
|Black Box||George||Recurring cast|
|2015||Deadbeat||Frank||Episode: "The Polaroid Flasher"|
|2016||Law & Order: Special Victims Unit||Detective Anton Jefferson||Episode: "Manhattan Transfer" & "Unholiest Alliance"|
|The Night Of||Trevor Williams||Recurring cast|
|2016–22||Saints & Sinners||Jabari Morris||Main cast|
|2020||Manifest||Walter||Episode: "Coordinated Flight"|
Video games edit
|2005||The Warriors||Additional Soldier|
|True Crime: New York City|||
|2008||Midnight Club: Los Angeles||Henry|
- Colaneri, Katie (July 5, 2012). ""Super Summer" Arrives In Newark". WBGO. Archived from the original on October 24, 2014. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Marks, Peter (December 10, 2003). "In 'A.M. Sunday,' an Enigma Wrapped in a Family". The Washington Post. highBeam Research. Archived from the original on November 17, 2018. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Yue, Jordan (June 12, 2012). "J.D. Williams: "I Didn't Want to Keep Doing Characters That Were Evil" ana | News". BET. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Dove (September 19, 2004). "JD Williams: Walking The Wire". AllHipHop. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- TV.com. "Homicide: Life on the Street - Season 7, episode 21: The Why Chromosome". TV.com. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Bianculli, David (May 29, 2002). "HBO Show Arrives Under 'The Wire' - Baltimore crime drama suffers by comparison". NY Daily News. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Spitz, Marc (June 4, 2012). "Maxim Interrogates the Makers and Stars of The Wire". Maxim. Archived from the original on June 24, 2012. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Rahman, Ray (September 19, 2011). "Watch The Wire's Bodie Push Weight in a FedEx Commercial". Vulture. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Luxoflux. True Crime: New York City. Activision. Scene: Pause menu credits, 4:29:41 in, VOICE TALENT.