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Report: Oz, Hightown actor and poet Craig 'muMs' Grant passes away

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Craig ‘muMs’ Grant, who portrayed Arnold “Poet” Jackson on the critically-acclaimed HBO drama-series Oz, has died at the age of 52, Deadline has learned.

Although Deadline reports that Grant died of natural causes, other outlets are reporting that an official cause of death has not been determined.

Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, Grant, who went by muMs da Schemer during his early slam-poetry days, began his career as part of the critically acclaimed Nuyorican Poetry Slam team. From there he was featured in the 1998 documentary Slam Nation: The Sport of Spoken Word and on early seasons on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam.

On the HBO series Oz, which ran form 1997 to 2003, Grant recurred as Poet, a heroin addict imprisoned for armed robbery and attempted murder. Other notable credits include appearances on Chappelle’s Show, The Sopranos, Boston Legal, Luke Cage, Blue Bloods, and City on a Hill. He also recurred as Cash Jackson on the 2017-2019 Netflix dramedy She’s Gotta Have It.

Grant also starred in several films including Steve Buscemi‘s Interview, the Safdie brothers’ Good Time, and Monsters and Men. He also recently completed his role in Steven Soderbergh’s No Sudden Move, starring Jon Hamm, Benicio Del Toro and Don Cheadle.

Deadline reports that at the time of his death, Grant was shooting a recurring role on the Starz series Hightown in Wilmington, North Carolina.

“I am just speechless right now,” tweeted activist Kevin Powell about Grant’s death. “Mums was mad gifted with words, and acting, and more. HUGE LOSS.”

Grant’s Oz co-star, JD Williams, also shared a touching message.

“R.I.P. to laureate extraordinaire Craig “Mums the Schemer” Grant. It was an honor to get to have SO many great conversations with you,” he wrote in part.

By Candice Williams
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