‘Family Guy’ voice actor Mike Henry steps down from Cleveland role

Carla Harmon
June 30, 2020

Henry, a white actor and comedian, has voiced Cleveland since Family Guy's inception in 1999.

Mike Henry has made a decision to step down from his role as Cleveland Brown on Family Guy, after voicing the beloved character for more than two decades.

Henry wrote on his Twitter account that it was an "honor" to voice Cleveland Brown for twenty years. The show was a spin-off from the long-running series "Family Guy". Fox released a statement declaring "Moving forward, The Simpsons will no longer have white actors voice non-white characters". As it was previously reported, many other white actors and actresses revealed they were stepping down from their roles due to their race.

"At the start of the show, I reasoned with myself that it was permissible for me to play "Missy" because her mom is Jewish and white - as am I", Slate continued.

Also this week, Kristen Bell departed her role on animated series Central Park, in which she voiced a mixed-race character. In an explanation posted to Instagram, Slate wrote, "Black characters on an animated show should be played by Black people". But now, she understands that her initial thoughts were wrong. "We missed a great opportunity to represent the Vietnamese-American community accurately and respectfully, and for that I am truly sorry", she wrote. "I am happy to relinquish the role to someone who can give a much more accurate portrayal and I will commit to learning, growing and doing my part for equality and inclusion".

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