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segunda-feira, 16 de janeiro de 2012

Sidney Poitier Actor, Writer, Director

Alternate Name: Sidney Poitier, SirSidney Poitier
Sidney Poitier
Gregg DeGuire/WireImage.com
  • Actor, Writer, Director
  • Gender: Male
  • Born: February 20, 1927
  • Birthplace: Miami, Florida, USA
  • Nationality: Bahamas

Full Biography

From All Movie Guide: Sidney Poitier was to Hollywood what Jackie Robinson was to major league baseball: simply put, the man who broke the color barrier. An actor, director, and producer, he forever altered the racial perceptions long held by both motion picture audiences and executives, rising to superstar status in an industry forever dominated on both sides of the camera by whites while becoming the first African-American ever to take home an Oscar for Best Actor. Born February 20, 1927, in Miami, FL, Poitier grew up in poverty in the British West Indies. After quitting school at the age of 13, he later joined the U.S. Army, serving in World War II as a medical assistant. Upon his release from duty he relocated to New York City, where he auditioned for the American Negro Theater. When his heavy Bahamian accent prompted laughter from producers, Poitier spent the next six months honing his elocution skills, practicing his enunciation by repeating radio routines, and finally gaining admission to the theatrical troupe's ranks after his second audition. Handsome and athletic, Poitier made his Broadway debut in 1946 in an all-black production of {+Lysistrata}, and moved into films four years later with No Way Out. His impressive turn in 1955's gritty The Blackboard Jungle brought him closer to stardom, and in 1958 he earned his first Academy Award nomination opposite Tony Curtis in Stanley Kramer's social drama The Defiant Ones. The film's focus on racial politics, as well as his increasing popularity with audiences of all racial backgrounds, solidified Poitier's standing as a key figure in the burgeoning civil rights movement, as roles in features including 1959's Porgy and Bess and 1961's Raisin in the Sun established him as the premier black actor of his generation. For 1963's The Lilies of the Field, he made history as the first African-American actor to win an Oscar in a leading role, and with the mainstream success of 1965's A Patch of Blue and 1967's To Sir, with Love, his ascent to superstardom was complete. Much to his credit, Poitier continued to make racially provocative films; in 1967 he appeared in Kramer's Guess Who's Coming to Dinner as the black fiancé of a white woman, while in the same year's Best Picture-winning In the Heat of the Night, he starred as a Philadelphia police detective facing prejudice while investigating a murder in the Deep South. In 1969, Poitier founded the First Artists Production Company, and in 1972 -- at the peak of the blaxploitation era which his earlier success made commercially viable -- announced his directorial debut with Buck and the Preacher. He directed and starred in his next three films (1973's Warm December, 1974's Uptown Saturday Night, and 1975's Let's Do It Again) before starring in Ralph Nelson's 1975 South African political thriller The Wilby Conspiracy, after which he returned to the director's chair with 1977's A Piece of the Action. After directing the 1980 comedy Stir Crazy, Poitier began to decrease his workload; he helmed two more features, 1982's Hanky Panky and 1984's Fast Forward, but then disappeared from filmmaking for the next several years. In 1988, Poitier appeared onscreen for the first time in over a decade in Roger Spottiswoode's thriller Shoot to Kill, followed by a supporting turn in the espionage drama Little Nikita. Upon directing 1990's disastrous Bill Cosby comedy Ghost Dad, he starred as Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall in the television feature Separate But Equal, and in 1992 appeared in the star-studded Sneakers. After another extended absence, Poitier returned in 1995 in the TV movie Children of the Dust, and in 1996 he starred in the long-awaited follow-up to his '67 success To Sir With Love, TV's To Sir With Love 2. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi

Tag Archives: Sidney Poitier and Helen Mirren presented


15 Jan
Award shows have been criticized for having too few participants or winners of color.  However, tonight the Golden Globes may have overcome that objection.  An African-American woman and two men actually won a Globe.
Idris Elba won “Best Performance” by an Actor in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television award for ‘Luther’.  While I have not yet seen it, he is an incredible actor and it is definitely on my list.  He certainly is deserving of recognition for his many masterful roles.
Octavia Spencer won “Best Supporting Actress” for ‘The Help’. Originally the movie received backlash due to its subject.  It is a story based on the maids interpretation of our dark side of our history.  This is a movie I did see, and was also reluctant at first.  But I’m glad I saw it, because her performance was amazing and it was definitely worth seeing.  The movie made you laugh, cry, and rejoice for how far we have actually come decades later.
Morgan Freeman was also honored with a special recognition, “The Cecil B. Demille Award” for lifetime achievement. Living legend, Sidney Poitier and Helen Mirren presented this extremely talented actor with this honor.  Freeman has made over 50 films and his span of work is truly incredible.  In each movie he gives 100% of himself and you can be fairly certain if he is in the movie, it will be a hit.
Watching three African-American actors being recognized in one year was awesome to watch and fitting, just a day before the Martin Luther King holiday.  It is exactly what Mr. King fought for so many years ago, “Equality for all”.  He must be smiling down and is certainly reminded once again, losing his life for a cause was not in vain.  They were all so deserving and it gives us hope for the future.  I can not wait to see Tyler Perry win for “Best Director” or “Best Film”, that would top the cake.
On a side note, it appears most stars were also celebrating MLK holiday, because everyone including Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp, Madonna, Leonardo DiCaprio, and George Clooney were extremely tan.  Did they have a tanning booth back stage or what?  And Angelina Jolie needs to eat a few cheeseburgers, her arms looked incredibly thin which was frightening to see.
It was also funny to see how second-time host Ricky Gervais had the stars looking so tense.  While he ended up being on “better” behavior, they seemed to sweat as he opened the show.   Many barely laughed, which was probably because they


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