Sean David Gerard Whitesell, a noted television writer and producer who also acted during his career, died in Los Angeles on December 28 following a battle with Glioblastoma Multiforme. He was 52.
The fifth of 6 brothers, among them WME co-CEO Patrick Whitesell, Sean was born in Iowa Falls, Iowa in 1963. He attended the University of Northern Iowa and went on to get his MFA from the University of California, San Diego. He began his career acting with notable roles including a recurring character on Oz and appearances on Homicide: Life On The Street, as well as a role in And The Band Played On.
Later in his career he turned to writing and production, serving as producer and co-executive producer on shows including Oz, Cold Case, The Black Donnellys, Perception, and The Killing. He was nominated for an Edgar Award in 2015 for his work on The Killing. He also wrote and directed several short films, most recently Eddie and The Aviator (2015), which he completed despite battling the aggressive disease he was diagnosed with in June, 2014.
He was known for his love of basketball, his sense of humor and his devotion to his family, and was able to enjoy his final months surrounded by friends and family. He is survived by his wife, Maria Quiban Whitesell, their son, Gus, his brothers John II, Christopher, Thomas, Patrick, and James, as well as several nieces and nephews. A funeral mass will be held January 2 at 10:15 AM at Saint Paul The Apostle Catholic Church in Los Angeles, followed by a reception at his brother, John’s house. The family requests that any donations be sent in his name to the UCLA Brain Cancer Research Fund.