Harris, who had a recurring role as Malvo in Chris Rock's TV series Everybody Hates Chris, died on Monday (26Dec16) of a heart attack, his manager Cindy Ambers has confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter.

The actor first entered Hollywood in the early '90s with 1993's Poetic Justice and Mikael Salomon's 1998 action movie Hard Rain. He later starred in 2001 film Bones, alongside Snoop Dogg and Pam Grier, and also lent his voice to various characters in the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas in 2004. Other recent appearances included roles on the 2015 drama-comedy Dope and The Tracy Morgan Show.

Harris had a long-held association with the hip hop community and worked with Snoop and Tha Dogg Pound on rap albums.

Leading tributes on social media, rapper Snoop described the performer as "my big brother, my homeboy," in an Instagram video, adding that he was "on his way to heaven now."

While fellow performer Ice Cube took to Twitter to share his grief over the news.

"Damn, we lost Ricky Harris. The world is a little less funny today. RIP homie," he shared.

Actor Cedric The Entertainer also expressed his sadness at Harris' death, writing on his social media pages, "Devastated!!! #RIP to the One and Only #RickyHarris Always been a super solid dude."

While actress Gabrielle Union simply wrote, "2016 is savage! RIP to a real one."

Harris is survived by his mother, his ex-wife and two daughters.