Born May 27, 1936, Louis Gossett, Jr. began acting at the age of 17. He won the Donaldson Award (best newcomer to theater) in 1953. He attended NYU on a basketball scholarship. He attended a try out for the New York Knicks when in his early 20's, but decided to pursue acting instead.
While at the Welcome Back to Brooklyn Festival, he was dubbed the 'King of Brooklyn' (1990).
He and his ex-wife, Cyndi James Gossett, have an adopted son.