April 7, 1952
New York City, U.S.
|Occupation||Actor, writer, director|
Peter Clarke (born April 7, 1952), known professionally as Clarke Peters, is an American actor, writer, and director. He is best known for his roles as Lester Freamon in the television series The Wire (2002–2008) and Albert Lambreaux in the television series Treme (2010–2013).
Peters is also known for his roles in the films Endgame (2009), John Wick (2014), Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017), Harriet (2019), and Da 5 Bloods (2020), the lattermost of which earned him a nomination for the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.
Peters was born Peter Clarke, the second of four sons, in New York City, and grew up in Englewood, New Jersey. At the age of 12, he had his first theater experience, in a school production of My Fair Lady. He began to have serious ambitions to work in the theater at the age of 14. He graduated from Dwight Morrow High School in 1970.
Shortly before he left for Paris, Peters was arrested for obstructing police lines after an anti-Vietnam war demonstration but was cleared. He later said of this experience: "It made me more angry than anything else, because what I experienced was how impotent you could be as an American citizen."
In 1971, Peters' older brother enabled him to work as a costume designer for a production of the musical Hair in Paris, in which Peters later starred. While there, Peters received a letter from the FBI that accused him of draft evasion. When he went to New Jersey to contest this charge, he said: "if the enemy comes to America, I'll be there, but I don't know the Vietnamese. If you put me in the army, I'm not going there."
In 1973, Peters moved to London and changed his name to Clarke Peters, because Equity already had a few namesake members. While in London, he formed a soul band, The Majestics, and worked as a backup singer on such hits as "Love and Affection" by Joan Armatrading, "Boogie Nights" by Heatwave, and some David Essex songs. However, music was not Peters' main ambition, and he preferred to work in the theater.
His first West End theatre musical roles, which he received with assistance from his friend Ned Sherrin, were I Gotta Shoe (1976) and Bubbling Brown Sugar (1977). Other West End credits include Blues in the Night, Porgy and Bess, The Witches of Eastwick, Chicago, and Chess. Peters starred in the Sean Connery space Western Outland (1981) as the treacherous Sgt. Ballard, and he played an almost wordless role as Anderson, a vicious pimp in Neil Jordan's Mona Lisa (1986).
After writing several revues with Sherrin, in 1990 Peters wrote the revue Five Guys Named Moe, which received a Tony Award nomination for Best Book of a Musical. He followed this up with Unforgettable, a musical about Nat King Cole, which received scathing reviews. He also starred in the 2010 UK production of Five Guys Named Moe.
As a stage actor, Peters has also appeared on Broadway. His performance in The Iceman Cometh (1999) won him the Theatre World Award, and he portrayed the shady lawyer Billy Flynn in the revival of Chicago in 2000 and 2003. In regional theatre he has appeared in Driving Miss Daisy, The Wiz, Bubbling Brown Sugar, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Carmen Jones, and The Amen Corner. In September 2011, Peters appeared on stage in a Sheffield Crucible Theatre production of Shakespeare's Othello, playing the title role opposite his Wire co-star Dominic West, who played Iago. In the 2014 New York Shakespeare in the Park festival, he played Gloucester in King Lear.
Peters is familiar to television viewers as Detective Lester Freamon in the HBO series The Wire. Peters also starred in the HBO mini-series The Corner, portraying a drug addict named Fat Curt, as well as the FX series Damages, as Dave Pell. Both The Wire and The Corner were created by writer and former The Baltimore Sun journalist David Simon. Peters also stars in Simon's HBO series Treme, in the role of Mardi Gras Indian chief Albert Lambreaux. Peters appeared in two episodes of the U.S. time-travel/detective TV series Life On Mars (2008) as NYPD Captain Fletcher Bellow.
He also appeared in the UK show Holby City, as Derek Newman, the father of nurse Donna Jackson. He voiced a part in the Doctor Who animated episode Dreamland, and in the In Plain Sight episode "Duplicate Bridge" as a man in Witness Protection named Norman Baker/Norman Danzer. In 2010, Peters read Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption for BBC 7. In that year, he also had a guest appearance as Professor Mark Ramsay in the pilot episode of the USA Network TV series Covert Affairs. Since 2012, Clarke Peters has had a recurring role as Alonzo D. Quinn in the CBS TV series Person of Interest.
Peters' movie credits include Mona Lisa (1986), Notting Hill (1999), K-PAX (2001), Freedomland (2006), Marley & Me (2008), Endgame (2009; in which he played Nelson Mandela), Nativity! (2009), the Spike Lee film Red Hook Summer (2012; in which he played Bishop Enoch), and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017).
Peters has had five children from three relationships. He and his first wife, Janine Martyne, who sang with him on recordings, had two children: a daughter, China Clarke, an architect, and a son, Peter Clarke, a tattoo artist. A subsequent relationship with Joanna Jacobs produced two sons: Joe Jacobs, an actor, and Guppy, who died of a kidney tumor in 1992, at the age of four. He has a son, Max, with his second wife, Penny; Max played the young Michael Jackson in the West End production of the musical Thriller – Live.
Awards and nominations
|AARP Movies for Grownups Awards||2021||Best Supporting Actor||Da 5 Bloods||Pending|||
|Awards Circuit Community Awards||2017||Best Cast Ensemble||Tre manifesti a Ebbing, Missouri||Nominated|||
|British Academy Film Awards||2021||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||Da 5 Bloods||Nominated|||
|Critics' Choice Movie Awards||2018||Best Acting Ensemble||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Won|||
|2021||Da 5 Bloods||Nominated|||
|Detroit Film Critics Society||2017||Best Ensemble||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Nominated|||
|Georgia Film Critics Association||2018||Best Ensemble||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Won|||
|Indiana Film Journalists Association||2021||Best Ensemble Acting||Da 5 Bloods||Nominated|||
|Music City Film Critics Association||2021||Best Ensemble Acting||Da 5 Bloods||Nominated|||
|NAACP Image Awards||2013||Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series||Treme||Nominated|||
|2020||Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture||Harriet||Nominated|||
|2021||Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture||Da 5 Bloods||Nominated|||
|Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture||Nominated|
|National Board of Review||2021||Best Ensemble||Da 5 Bloods||Won|||
|Online Film Critics Society||2017||Best Ensemble||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Won|||
|San Diego Film Critics Society||2017||Best Ensemble||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Nominated|||
|Screen Actors Guild Awards||2021||Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture||Da 5 Bloods||Nominated|||
|Seattle Film Critics Society||2017||Best Ensemble||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Nominated|||
|Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association||2017||Best Ensemble||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Won|||
|1979||The Music Machine||Laurie|
|1980||Silver Dream Racer||Cider Jones|
|1996||Seasick||Radio Reporter Pounds|
|1999||Notting Hill||Helix Lead Actor|
|2003||Head of State||Fundraiser Demo-Tape Man|
|2008||The Poker House||Maurice|
|2008||Marley & Me||Editor|
|2009||Brief Interviews with Hideous Men||Subject #31|
|2011||Searching for Sonny||Narrator|
|2012||Red Hook Summer||Da Good Bishop Enoch Rouse|
|2014||The Best of Me||Morgan Dupree|
|2015||The Benefactor||Dr. Romano|
|2015||The Bad Education Movie||Commander Andrews|
|2017||Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri||Police Chief Abercrombie|
|2018||An Acceptable Loss||Phillip Lamm|
|2019||The Mandela Effect||Dr. Fuchs|
|2020||Come Away||Mad Hatter|
|2020||Da 5 Bloods||Otis|
|1980–1984||Play for Today||Yankee Billy / Stevie||2 episodes|
|1983||The Professionals||President Ojuka||Episode: "The Ojuka Situation"|
|1983||Saigon: Year of the Cat||Soldier||TV movie|
|1985||Travelling Man||Alan Downing||Episode: "A Token Attempt"|
|1989||Red King, White Knight||Jones||TV movie|
|1989||Frederick Forsyth Presents: A Casualty of War||Grover T. Fleming||TV movie|
|1991||El C.I.D.||Sultan||Episode: "Christmas Spirit"|
|1992||A Masculine Ending||Theo Sykes||TV movie|
|1993||Death Train||C.W. Whitlock||TV movie|
|1993||Between the Lines||Mr. Banthorpe||Episode: "Jumping the Lights"|
|1994||Murder Most Horrid||American||Episode: "Mangez Merveillac"|
|1995||Chandler & Co||Jasper||Episode: "The American Dream"|
|1996||French and Saunders||Lt. Johnny Cochrane||Episode: "The Quick and the Dead"|
|1998||Jonathan Creek||Hewie Harper||2 episodes|
|2000||The Corner||Fat Curt||Miniseries; 6 episodes|
|2000||Oz||Afsana||Episode: "The Bill of Wrongs"|
|2002||Night and Day||Gabriel Huysman||3 episodes|
|2002–2008||The Wire||Det. Lester Freamon||Main cast; 55 episodes|
|2003||Waking the Dead||Howard Boorstin||2 episodes: "Multistorey"|
|2003, 2016||American Masters||Narrator||2003: "James Brown: Soul Survivor"|
2016: "Fats Domino and The Birth of Rock 'n' Roll"
|2005||Law & Order: Trial by Jury||Rex da Silva||Episode: "Pattern of Conduct"|
|2007||Meadowlands||Professor / Samantha's Father||Episode #1.6|
|2008||Life on Mars||Captain Bellow||2 episodes|
|2009||Damages||Dave Pell||8 episodes|
|2009||In Plain Sight||Norman Baker / Norman Danzer||Episode: "Duplicate Bridge"|
|2009||Great Performances||Walter de Courcy||Episode: "Chess in Concert"|
|2009||Holby City||Derek Newman||5 episodes|
|2009||Dreamland||Night Eagle (voice)||4 episodes|
|2010||Covert Affairs||Dr. Mark Ramsay||Episode: "Pilot"|
|2010–2013||Treme||Albert Lambreaux||Main cast; 35 episodes|
|2011||Archer||Popeye (voice)||2 episodes|
|2011||Memphis Beat||Fred||Episode: "The Feud"|
|2012–2013||Person of Interest||Alonzo Quinn||11 episodes|
|2013||Blue Bloods||Nathan Anderson||Episode: "Quid Pro Quo"|
|2014||True Detective||Minister||Episode: "The Long Bright Dark"|
|2014||Death in Paradise||Marlon Croft||Episode: "Political Suicide"|
|2014||The Divide||Isaiah Page||8 episodes|
|2015||Forever||Jerry Charters||Episode: "The Wolves of Deep Brooklyn"|
|2015||Midsomer Murders||Frank Wainwright||S17E3: "The Ballad of Midsomer County"|
|2015||Agatha Christie’s Partners in Crime||Julius Hersheimmer||“‘The Secret Adversary:Part 1,2,3”|
|2015||Show Me a Hero||Robert Mayhawk||2 episodes|
|2015||London Spy||The American||Episode: "Strangers"|
|2015||Jessica Jones||Det. Oscar Clemons||4 episodes|
|2016||Jericho||Ralph Coates||8 episodes|
|2016||The Tunnel||Sonny Persaud||4 episodes|
|2016–2017||Chance||Carl Allan||9 episodes|
|2016||People of Earth||Ronald||Episode: "Lost and Found"|
|2017||The Blacklist: Redemption||Richard Whitehall||2 episodes|
|2017||The Deuce||Melvin "Ace"||Episode: "My Name Is Ruby"|
|2018||Bulletproof||Director-General Ronald Pike Sr||6 episodes|
|2018||Love Is||Present-day Yasir||10 episodes|
|2019||His Dark Materials||The Master of Jordan College. (series 1)||3 episodes|
|2019||Christmas Under the Stars||Clem||Television film (Hallmark)|
|2021||The Irregulars||The Linen Man|
|TBA||The Man Who Fell to Earth||Josiah Falls||Main role, upcoming series|
- "Clarke Peters: From The Wire to Nelson Mandela". The Independent. April 30, 2009. Retrieved November 7, 2011.
- Apter, Kelly (August 3, 2010). "The Wire's Clarke Peters in Fringe run of Five Guys Named Moe". The List. Retrieved August 27, 2018.
- "Clarke Peters CV... 1970: Graduates from Dwight Morrow High School in New Jersey."
- Hattenstone, Simon (August 8, 2010). "Clarke Peters: Razzle dazzler". The Guardian. Retrieved November 8, 2011.
- Anthony, Andrew (September 4, 2011). "Dominic West and Clarke Peters: 'We love each other's company'". The Guardian. Retrieved September 28, 2017.
- Soloski, Alexis (August 7, 2014). "King Lear in the Park review: John Lithgow is not quite every inch the king". The Guardian. Retrieved August 11, 2014.
- Walker, Dave (June 5, 2011). "For local 'Treme' viewers, Clarke Peters brings Big Chief Albert Lambreaux to life". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved January 7, 2012.
- "Life on Mars (TV Series 2008–2009) – Full Cast & Crew". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved December 3, 2013.
- "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption", BBC Media Centre.
- Clarke Peters at IMDb. Retrieved April 14, 2013.
- "Audiobook Reviews: Telegraph Avenue". Audiofile. September 15, 2012.
- Rich, Frank (April 9, 1992). "From London, a Celebration Of Louis Jordan and His Music". The New York Times. Retrieved February 7, 2013.
- "The Wire podcasts: Clarke Peters". The Mark Steiner Show. March 7, 2008. Retrieved November 30, 2018.
- Egner, Jeremy (July 27, 2012). "Clarke Peters in 'Red Hook Summer,' Directed by Spike Lee". The New York Times. Retrieved February 7, 2013.
- Lewis, John (November 2012). "Academy Reward". Baltimore. Archived from the original on December 6, 2013. Retrieved February 7, 2013.
- "Did Jesus study yoga in the East? Me and My God, Clarke Peters talks to John Morrish". The Sunday Telegraph. April 20, 1997.
He encountered the Brahma Kumaris a couple of years later ... found what [he] was looking for.[dead link]
- "AARP Movies for Grownups Awards: 'Trial of the Chicago 7,' 'Da 5 Bloods' Lead Nominations". The Hollywood Reporter. February 8, 2021. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "Awards Circuit Community Awards (2017)". IMDb. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "BAFTA Nominations 2021: 'Nomadland' & 'Rocks' Lead Highly Diverse Field". Deadline. March 9, 2021. Retrieved March 9, 2021.
- "Critics' Choice Awards: 'The Shape of Water' Leads With 14 Nominations". The Hollywood Reporter. December 6, 2017. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- Davis, Clayton (February 8, 2021). "Critics Choice Awards: 'Mank' Leads With 12 Nominations, Netflix Makes History With Four Best Picture Nominees". Variety. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "The 2017 Detroit Film Critics Society Awards". detroitfilmcritics.com. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "2017 Awards". Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "The 2020 Indiana Film Journalists Association (IFJA) Winners". Next Best Picture. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "The 2020 Music City Film Critics Association (MCFCA) Nominations". Next Best Picture. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "The 44th NAACP Image Award complete winners list". Los Angeles Times. February 1, 2013. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "NAACP | Nominees Announced for 51st NAACP Image Awards". NAACP. January 9, 2020. Retrieved July 17, 2021.
- Gibbs, Adrienne. "Netflix, HBO Lead NAACP Image Awards 2021 Nominations". Forbes. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- Davis, Clayton (January 26, 2021). "National Board of Review Names 'Da 5 Bloods' Best Picture, Spike Lee Becomes Second Black Director Winner". Variety. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- Hipes, Patrick (December 28, 2017). "'Get Out' Named Best Picture By Online Film Critics Society". Deadline. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "San Diego Film Critics Society Nominations: Dunkirk, Shape of Water Lead plus double mentions for Sally Hawkins – AwardsWatch". December 10, 2017. Archived from the original on December 10, 2017. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "'Blade Runner 2049' Leads the 2017 Seattle Film Critics Society Nominations". Seattle Film Critics Society. December 11, 2017. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- "2020 WAFCA Award Winners - The Washington DC Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA)". www.dcfilmcritics.com. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
- Chilton, Martin (Culture Editor online) (July 5, 2013). "Clarke Peters and a journey across music". The Telegraph.
- Editorial Staff (October 23, 2006). "20 Questions With... Clarke Peters". What's On Stage. Archived from the original on February 22, 2014.
- Inskeep, Steve (Host) (April 9, 2010). "David Simon And Clarke Peters On 'Treme'". Morning Edition. National Public Radio.
- "Interview: Clarke Peters – Down to the Wire". The Scotsman. August 24, 2009.
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