Nelsan Ellis Talks About Lafayette

June 13, 2010 by  

Nelsan Ellis plays the flamboyant Lafayette on True Blood. This is a character that brings so much to the show and Nelsan is extremely entertaining to watch on screen.  The rising popularity has brought Nelsan into the spotlight in a big way.  He can be seen in the upcoming movie, “Secretariat” which comes out this fall.

As well as Nelsan plays Lafayette on True Blood, the nature of the character has brought some tension into the actor’s family life.  Nelsan explains:

“They accept that I’m an actor and I can now pay my rent, and that’s about as far as that goes. I don’t necessarily think they appreciate Lafayette.”

Nelsan’s mother does not watch the show and only one of his sisters, out of eight siblings, is a fan of the series.  Nelsan explains that his sister never misses an episode. He also talks about when he took his brother to one of the premieres and he sort of disappeared – Nelsan believes he may have been a little embarrassed.
Nevertheless, Nelsan sees his role as Lafayette as an “actor’s wonderland” and he loves it!  Nelsan credits his role as Lafayette as giving him much needed stability in his life, a life that started off hard.

As a child, Nelsan and his siblings were wards of the state, moving around from his grandmother’s home to his aunt’s home, and other relatives.  Nelsan credits the strong women in his life for constantly instilling in him that if he wanted to do something or be somebody he was going to have to make it happen.  Nelsan went on to join the Marine Corps. He then went on to attend Juilliard where he wrote and staged his first play entitled, “Ugly”.  He went on to write another screenplay which he described as “the white version” of the movie “Precious”. Nelsan describes his work:

“It’s something very real, but you have to take the truth and put it in a dress in order for people to want it, to buy it. You can’t just tell the truth, the truth isn’t commercial.”

Nelsan promises his True Blood fans that season 3 won’t disappoint and says that fans will get to see a softer side of Lafayette. We look forward to seeing Nelsan reprise his role as Lafayette and I know we will continue to be entertained by this very talented actor!

(Photo credit: HBO Inc.)