Sidney Poitier, Oscar-winning actor and Hollywood's first Black movie star, dies at 94

4 months ago 101
PR Distribution

(CNN)Sidney Poitier, whose elegant bearing and principled onscreen characters made him Hollywood's archetypal Black movie prima and the archetypal Black antheral to triumph the champion histrion Oscar, has died. He was 94.

Clint Watson, property caput for the Prime Minister of the Bahamas, confirmed to CNN that Poitier died Thursday evening.

Poitier overcame an impoverished inheritance successful the Bahamas and a heavy land accent to emergence to the apical of his assemblage astatine a clip erstwhile salient roles for Black actors were rare. He won the Oscar for 1963's "Lilies of the Field," successful which helium played an itinerant laborer who helps a radical of White nuns physique a chapel.

    Many of his best-known films explored radical tensions arsenic Americans were grappling with societal changes wrought by the civilian rights movement. In 1967 alone, helium appeared arsenic a Philadelphia detective warring bigotry successful small-town Mississippi successful "In the Heat of the Night" and a doc who wins implicit his White fiancée's skeptical parents successful "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner."

      Poitier's movies struggled for organisation successful the South, and his prime of roles was constricted to what White-run studios would produce. Racial taboos, for example, precluded him from astir romanticist parts. But his dignified roles helped audiences of the 1950s and 1960s envision Black radical not conscionable arsenic servants but arsenic doctors, teachers and detectives.

        At the aforesaid time, arsenic the lone Black starring antheral successful 1960s Hollywood, helium came nether tremendous scrutiny. He was excessively often hailed arsenic a noble awesome of his contention and endured disapproval from immoderate Black radical who said helium had betrayed them by taking sanitized roles and pandering to Whites.

          "It's been an tremendous responsibility," Poitier told Oprah Winfrey successful 2000. "And I accepted it, and I lived successful a mode that showed however I respected that responsibility. I had to. In bid for others to travel down me, determination were definite things I had to do."

            This is simply a processing communicative and volition beryllium updated.

            Read Entire Article