Mike Henry, the longtime voice of Family Guy’s Cleveland, has announced he’ll no longer play the character.
“It’s been an honor to play Cleveland on Family Guy for 20 years,” Henry wrote in a tweet posted Friday. “I love this character, but persons of color should play characters of color. Therefore, I will be stepping down from the role.”
Henry voiced the character of Cleveland Brown since Family Guy’s premiere in 1999. He also starred in the spin-off series, The Cleveland Show, which ran for four seasons.
Henry becomes the third white voice actor this week who’s stepped aside from playing a person of color. Earlier, Jenny Slate announced she would no longer voice Missy on Big Mouth, and Kristen Bell dropped out of playing Molly on Central Park.
Family Guy was recently renewed for an eighteenth season, keeping the show on the air through 2021. Past episodes are currently streaming on Hulu.
It’s been an honor to play Cleveland on Family Guy for 20 years. I love this character, but persons of color should play characters of color. Therefore, I will be stepping down from the role. pic.twitter.com/FmKasWITKT
— Mike Henry (@mikehenrybro) June 26, 2020