July 8 (UPI) -- Nelsan Ellis' manager announced Saturday the True Blood and Elementary actor, who was also a playwright, has died at the age of 39.
His film credits include The Soloist, The Help and Get On Up.
"Nelsan has passed away after complications with heart failure," Emily Gerson Saines told The Hollywood Reporter. "He was a great talent, and his words and presence will be forever missed."
"We were extremely saddened to hear of the passing of Nelsan Ellis," HBO said in a statement to People magazine. "Nelsan was a long-time member of the HBO family whose groundbreaking portrayal of Lafayette will be remembered fondly within the overall legacy of True Blood. Nelsan will be dearly missed by his fans and all of us at HBO."