Hollywood Friday paid tribute to iconic actor/director and civil rights activist Sidney Poitier, who died Thursday night at the age of 94.
Poitier’s prolific movie career features such groundbreaking films as In The Heat of the Night, Raisin in the Sun, The Defiant Ones, To Sir, With Love and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner that helped paved the way for Black actors in the 1950s and 1960s. Poitier was the first Black man to win the Academy Award for best actor for his role in the 1963 film Lilies of the Field.
Poitier also directed several hit films, including Buck and the Preacher starring Harry Belafonte, Uptown Saturday Night with Bill Cosby and Stir Crazy with Richard Pryor and Gene Wilder. In 2009, Poitier was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama.
On TV, Poitier was nominated for Emmy Awards for his portrayals of Nelson Mandela in Showtime’s Mandela and De Klerk, and Thurgood Marshall in ABC’s Separate But Equal.
In tribute to Poitier, OWN on January 9 will present a day-long, Poitier programming tribute including re-airings of The Oprah Winfrey Show episodes in 2000 and 2007 and Oprah Winfrey Presents: Legends Who Paved the Way from 2015; and the 1967 film To Sir, With Love, said the network.
Weigel Broadcasting's retro services Movies! network and Decades network will feature Poitier-themed programming blocks over the next two months. Movies! will air Poitier’s first credited screen role in No Way Out on February 7, as well as three of his films -- No Way Out, Edge of the City and Blackboard Jungle on February 28, said network officials.
Decades Network will air a 1972 episode of The Dick Cavett Show on January 10 featuring Poitier and Belafonte discussing their movie Buck and the Preacher, said the network.
Sidney Poitier 🕊 pic.twitter.com/otVjSFHaw8January 7, 2022
Around this time last year Cicely Tyson was releasing her book and promoting it. I had no idea she would pass away shortly thereafter. Now, to wake up this morning to a call that Sidney Poitier has passed away... continued: https://t.co/WWbsTgh1U0 pic.twitter.com/jgezv2ktGDJanuary 7, 2022
“I'm on the porch of our little home on Cat Island in the Bahamas. Evening turns the sky a bright burnt orange. My mother and father fan the smoke from green palm leaves. My sister Teddy takes me in her arms to rock me to sleep.” Rest in triumph, Mr. Poitier. Thank you forever. pic.twitter.com/j29bDNEqVlJanuary 7, 2022
Sidney Poitier, a titan of cinema and the first Black man to win a Best Actor Oscar, has died at 94. May he rest in power. pic.twitter.com/A438nmcUf2January 7, 2022
#BETRemembers legendary actor, film director, activist, and ambassador #SidneyPoitier, who died today at the age of 94. In 1964, he won the Academy Award for Best Actor, becoming the first Black male and Bahamian actor to win the award. 🕊 pic.twitter.com/AsSYsgYYE6January 7, 2022
Sidney was my inspiration, my guiding light, my friend. Sending love to Joanna and his family. pic.twitter.com/0UzVIyeJZVJanuary 7, 2022
If you wanted the sky i would write across the sky in letters that would soar a thousand feet high..To Sir… with Love Sir Sidney Poitier R.I.P.He showed us how to reach for the starsJanuary 7, 2022
Immediately dispelling the perverted, obscene, and misinformed notion of white supremacy in every beautifully human, artistic and dignified way = Sidney Poitier. https://t.co/aU4ptHBKCxJanuary 7, 2022
Sidney Poitier, the first Black man to win an Oscar, has died at the age of 94. The star of “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner” and “Lilies of the Field,” for which he won Best Actor, was a trailblazer who will be mourned by so many for whom he opened the very doors of Hollywood.January 7, 2022
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