Larenz Tate is no stranger to playing gritty.

His turn as the gun-toting, wild card O-Dog in 1993’s Menace II Society, is sure proof of his ability to take it there. Then, in 1995, the Chicago native portrayed a Vietnam veteran willing to rob a bank in order to provide for his family, in Dead Presidents.

Oh yes, he does grimy well.

And now, the youngest of the Tate brothers has another dark turn coming our way.

He now joins the NBC network for a twisty, turny series called Game of Silence, centering on a group of friends with a haunting secret and tortured past.  Twenty five years after a tragic incident, they come back together to try and right some of their wrongs. Needless to say, redemption will not be easy.

Larenz, who still has the ladies swooning over his fountain-of-youth looks and alluring smile, plays Shawn Cook.  He’s the comic relief  when the air gets too thick but can hit the flip when it’s time to handle business.

Gearing up for the April 12 premiere, Larenz made a stop through’s Chicago office to deliver inside scoop on the show and discuss the versatility of his career.

Check out Part 1 of our conversation below, during which Larenz breaks down his character arc and dishes on how intense ‘Game of Silence’ gets:

On Game of Silence:

The Thespian

The politics of Hollywood can be fickle and even lead emerging actors to an identity crisis when it comes to available roles. Somehow , Larenz was able to swerve the “stereotypical” casting cycles when it comes to Black men. In the video below, he breaks down how.

 The Storyteller

We’re well aware of what Larenz Tate is capable of in front of the camera.  But behind the scenes, the visionary also delivers with passion.  Along with his brothers, Lahmard and Laron,  he makes sure TateMen Entertainment is a production powerhouse that allows the trio to tap into their talents as writers, directors and producers.

In the below clip, Larenz discusses his adoration for storytelling and working in the music video and commercial realm as a director.

Tune-in: Game of Silence on NBC, 10/9 c.  April 12.