Upon her entry into professional acting on the critically acclaimed HBO series The Wire, actress Felicia Pearson illustrated the dramatic power that can emanate from a performance when a strong connection exists between the thespian's offscreen life and that of her character. It was hardly a coincidence that Pearson was so adept at portraying a dysfunctional urban character mixed up in the difficulties of inner-city life, for that closely mirrored her own life and experience. Born prematurely, at a weight of only three lbs., with both of her parents behind bars, Pearson initially faced slim prospects. She survived, despite an inability to drink from a regular bottle given her physical size, then received placement with a foster grandmother in East Baltimore. As an adolescent, Pearson weathered the difficulties and dodged the potential pitfalls of ghetto life (including crime and drugs), but ultimately wound up in jail.
Her life began to turn around in 2000, when the then-20-year-old vowed to improve her circumstances whatever the cost; she returned to school, determined to complete it, and in the process, happened to meet Wire actor Michael K. Williams (who played stick-up man Omar Little). The actor felt so impressed with the upstart and deeply moved by her story that he arranged a meeting between Pearson and the producers of The Wire, who promptly signed her for the role of the murderous Snoop. In the years that followed, Pearson actualized her promise to complete secondary school, then enrolled at the Baltimore School of the Arts and studied under Robert Chew ("Proposition Joe" on The Wire). She also published a memoir, Grace After Midnight.