The outlet confirmed the news of the actor’s death with the office of the Bahamian Minister of Foreign Affairs on Friday, January 7, 2022. He died on January 6. The details surrounding the death, including the cause and location of his death, have yet to be revealed.
Funeral arrangements have also not yet been revealed.
Here’s everything we know about Sidney Poitier:
Sidney Poitier Was a Trailblazer for Black Actors & Was the First Black Actor to Earn an Oscar
According to the New York Post’s obituary of Poitier, the actor’s career spanned 71 years and he’s best known for his roles in movies like “A Raisin in the Sun,” “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” and “Uptown Saturday Night.”
Poitier got his start in the entertainment industry when he moved from the Bahamas to New York City at age 16, according to the outlet. While in NYC “he found work as a janitor at the American Negro Theater in exchange for acting lessons.” His film debut came in 1950 when he played Dr. Luther Brooks in “the racially charged” movie “No Way Out.”
Poitier continued to break barriers when he became the first Black actor to be nominated for an Academy Award in the Best Actor category in 1959. His role in “The Defiant Ones” earned him a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award, according to the outlet.
He would not earn the Oscar for that film but in 1963 he did. His role as Homer Smith in “Lilies of the Field” earned him an Academy Award for Best Actor, the first time a Black man has ever earned the honor.
Tributes to Sidney Poitier Flooded in on Social Media When the News Broke of His Death
Fans, fellow actors, and media alike offered their tributes to the actor on Friday.
“this man is a bonafide, top notch, legend of the highest caliber. a true loss. rip sidney poitier,” journalist Oliver Willis tweeted. “I was thinking, literally yesterday, that someone should reach out to Sidney Poitier for one last interview before it was too late. RIP to a trailblazer,” another journalist tweeted.
“What a landmark actor. One of a kind. What a beautiful, gracious, warm, genuinely regal man. RIP, Sir. With love,” another person tweeted.
“i am deeply saddened by sidney poitier’s passing. he had the rare combination of charisma and skill that made him the perfect movie star. his legacy endures and blazes the path forward,” an actress tweeted.
“Watching Sidney Poitier as a kid in A RAISIN IN THR SUN & GUESS WHO’S COMING TO DINNER was like watching history unfold. He gave many Black artists their spark because of how he broke barriers in during the Golden Age in Hollywood. A true legend who created a legacy for us all,” a fan tweeted.
“I’ve posted this picture before, but while many remember #SidneyPoitier for his acting, I just want to acknowledge he was also a righteous freedom fighter,” Bakari Sellers tweeted along with a photo of Poitier with Martin Luther King Jr.