How Andre Braugher Stayed Family-Focused Through His Brooklyn Nine-Nine Fame

The entertainment world suffered a tragic loss when "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" star Andre Braugher passed away at just 61 in December 2023. His esteemed career spanned many genres and mediums, and Braugher won two Emmys for the hit shows "Homicide: Life on the Street" and "Thief." He was nominated another four times for his celebrated work on "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" as the delightfully deadpan Captain Raymond Holt. Despite the sitcom's immense success, Braugher was open about keeping his family at the center of his life throughout his career.

A September 2020 interview with Variety revealed that Braugher would film "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" in L.A. and then fly back to New Jersey on the weekends to be with his wife, Ami Brabson, and their three sons. He explained, "I made a choice along the way that Ami and those boys were too important to not spend quantity time with. Both the health crisis and the democracy crisis that we're going through demonstrate to me that there's no substance in the bling. The focus on celebrity-ness — it's not real. So I just chose, in my own way, to sort of drop out."

Braugher's role as a father was very important to him

Andre Braugher was aware that he could've done much more career-wise, but the late actor had no regrets. As he asserted to Variety, "It would have been at the expense of my own life." Regarding his children, Braugher added, "I've got three boys, and I want them to know me as someone other than the guy who takes them to the circus every once in a while. I wanted to be there through the course of their life because I know how important fathers are."

Back in 2011, Braugher was interviewed by TV Guide about his role in "Men of a Certain Age." At that time, he filmed the show in L.A. and didn't make any indication of traveling home often. But, on working far away from his family for long periods, Braugher acknowledged, "It's a bummer, but it's the price you pay." Something must have changed his tune, since by the time he did "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," he made the journey home to see his family weekly.

Andre wasn't the only Braugher with an acting career

Acting is something of a family business for the Braughers. Andre Braugher and his wife, Ami Brabson, got married in 1991, and beginning in 1993, they both appeared in "Homicide: Life on the Street." They played a married couple onscreen as well, as Detective Frank Pembleton and Mary Pembleton respectively. Brabson has also enjoyed turns on shows like "Law & Order," "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "Bull," and "Power."

Andre and Brabson shared three children: Michael, Isaiah, and John Wesley Braugher. Michael actually graduated from Juilliard, the same conservatory as his father. He's since performed on both the stage and screen. Fans of "The Gilded Age" may even recognize Michael for playing Booker T. Washington in the period drama. Isaiah also has a degree in theater, but it seems he has yet to appear in any TV or film projects at the time of writing.

Either way, though, it's clear that both Andre's children and his wife understood the demands of a working actor's career — even if the "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" star refused to put his job above them.