Kerry Washington Honors Michael K. Williams at Emmys Weeks After Death

Williams’ co-star Smollett reportedly also paid tribute to the late star on the red carpet, wearing a hair accessory with his initials, “MKW.” Smollett previously penned a gut-wrenching Instagram post to Williams on Sept. 15, writing, “I couldn’t breathe. Taken a while for my brain to metabolize how the world can continue to spin w/out him here in the physical form. He was supposed to be here with us this week in L.A. for the Emmys.”

Williams was previously recognized with three other acting Emmy nominations for his roles in BessieThe Night Of and When They See Us. He is best known for his portrayal of Omar Little in HBO’s The Wire, and Albert “Chalky” White on Boardwalk Empire. HBO further honored Williams’ legacy, calling the multitalented star a “member of the HBO family for more than 20 years.” The network shared an Instagram tribute, writing, “We knew Michael as a dear friend who was beloved by all who had the privilege to work with him. We send our deepest condolences to his family for this immeasurable loss.” 

HBO added, “Michael Kenneth Williams had one of the most iconic and dynamic acting careers in history. As he once said, his characters chose him, and, as we know, he made every character his own.”

The 2021 Emmys also saw John Oliver and Lorne Michaels honor former Saturday Night Live cast member Norm Macdonald in their respective acceptance speeches. 

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