A performer with a hip, street-smart mentality that he exhibited consistently from project to project, Andre Royo is perhaps best known for his multi-season portrayal of amiable junkie informant Bubbles on HBO's popular cop/crime drama series The Wire (2002-2008). Royo grew up in New York City, and was reportedly expelled from high school prematurely for a perceived overemphasis on acting and drama at the expense of his other studies. He scored his first major career break with a role in the TLC music video of "Ain't Too Proud to Beg," then delved into feature performances beginning in 2000 with a bit part in John Singleton's Shaft, followed by a supporting contribution to director Christopher Scott Cherot's moody romantic drama G (2002). Thereafter, Royo would continue to appear on screen in films like Men Without Jobs, Jellysmoke, andAugust.
Biography by Nathan Southern
- After working construction in New York City, began studying acting at Uta Hagen's HB Studio in Manhattan.
- Was a member of a small acting company at Manhattan's Room 203 theatre, which let the group stage plays in exchange for doing painting and construction work in the building.
- While working the door at New York's Cheetah Club, met director John Singleton, who cast him in a 2000 remake of Shaft starring Samuel L. Jackson.
- Has said he was shooed away from the craft service table on the set of HBO's The Wire because he looked like an actual homeless person, while playing the character Bubbles.
- His Wire character was based on a real drug addict who was an informant for Ed Burns when the producer was a police detective in Baltimore; the real Bubbles died of AIDS in the late 1980s.
- Wife co-owns a restaurant in Los Angeles called Canelé.