Robert Chew aka Proposition Joe “The Wire” Has Died

· January 18, 2013

prop-joe-death_640_400_s_c1_center_top_0_0-1Michael K Williams, better known as Omar from “The Wire,” just tweeted this out about his former co-star Robert Chew. Chew played Proposition Joe on the series and appeared in every season.


According to the coroner in Baltimore, Chew died of cardiovascular disease. “Morbid obesity” was listed as a contributing factor.

But he was also an esteemed acting coach. Reads a City Paper article from 2006:

The task of workshopping the roles with the four actors [who played Michael, Randy, Dukie, and Namond in season four] fell to Burns and a familiar Wire face, actor Robert Chew, who plays the indelible Proposition Joe in the series. Since 1993, Chew has worked with the youth theater program at Baltimore’s Arena Players, the United States’ oldest still-active African-American community theater company; he’s currently its music director. And Chew saw his job as to help the actors find their roles inside themselves.

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Discussion18 Comments

  1. ICE says:

    i haven’t seen 70% of the wire cast in anything else after the show ended

    • MoorFedayeen says:

      Because many of them weren’t real actors, just extras that got big roles. Same goes for the cast of The Sopranos. None of them got much action after the show. The cast of Seinfiled and the list goes on. They were only good at one thing like Precious.

      • Bob says:

        True and many of them was real hardcore cats did real time in the joint sold drugs everythang. What’s her name…Snoopy she serving time in the joint right now, dumb he-broad got caught sellin. That’s why the show was so raw, they used them actual folks for this sh1t.

      • M0311 says:

        Idris Elba is a very prominent actor. Dominic West, Wendell Pierce and Triston Wilds have had plenty of success since the show ended. Wood Harris had a few roles and he also starred in the movie about Jimmy Hendrix. Not the one Andre 3000 is shooting right now.

        • Tim says:

          My brother ran into him here in Baltimore a few years back and even then he was not in good health. He explained to him that he really did not make much from the show, and that no one was really considering him for the few gigs he had read for.

          Life is fun like that. When a dude who also starred in the show, who lives right across the street from me is doing just great. He lives off of his status as a Wire cast member, and wannabe politician.

          I also remember him in the movie with MosDef, “Something the Lord Made” on HBO about Vivian Thomas, the black doctor who became a doctor without going to medical school, and who developed a cure for Blue babies and several other medical things he never got credit for.

          Actually, there were several wire cast members on there with non speaking roles, but Williams spoke.

          • Tim says:

            Funny like that…..correction

          • MoorFedayeen says:

            Yea but all those guys like Idris were real established actors already. We talkin cats from the street like Snoop. Hell even McNulty didn’t really stay afloat for too long after the show.

          • M0311 says:

            @Moore……McNulty (Dominic West) has had a very well established career since the Wire. Just last year he recieved an award for his roles in TV movies. He just turned down a role in the movie, Game of Thrones.

          • M0311 says:

            My bad, I meant the series, Game of Thrones.

  2. Kdot says:

    Damn! RIP.. Didn’t Brother Muzones driver/apprentice die also?

  3. He was a good actor,prop was my man on the wire. Rip Robert chew

  4. E-Dub says:

    RIP Prop Joe. Great Show.

  5. Pceezy says:

    I thought Method Man killed him?,,,, lol

  6. RIP Prop Joe. You played the ish out of that character.

  7. 615CA$HVILLE says:

    Some of the Wire actors went to Treme on HBO bout after Katrina series the same producers that did the Wire.. R.I.P he played the hell out Prop Joe til Marlow done him in

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