Death – Sir Sidney Poitier dead at 94

Death – Obituary

Sidney Poitier, the first black man to win best actor Oscar and star of ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’, dies aged 94

  • Sir Sidney Poitier has died at 94
  • His death has been confirmed by Minister of Foreign Affairs Fred Mitchell
  • Poitier was the first black actor to win an Academy Award for Best Actor in 1964 
  • He was awarded a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II in 1974
  • In 2009, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama 

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Legendary Hollywood actor Sidney Poitier – the first black man to win a best actor Oscar – has died at 94.  

His passing was confirmed by the Bahamas’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Fred Mitchell, on Friday morning. 

His cause of death is not yet known. 

Bahamian-American Poitier’s trailblazing acting career saw win an Oscar in 1964 for his role in Lilies of the Field him and earn two further Academy Award nominations, ten Golden Globes nominations, two Primetime Emmy Awards nominations, six BAFTA nominations, eight Laurel nominations, and one Screen Actors Guild Awards nomination. 

Twice-married, he had four daughters with his first wife Juanita Hardy and two with his second wife Joanna Shimkus. 

RIP: Oscar-winning Hollywood star Sir Sidney Poitier has died at 94

RIP: Oscar-winning Hollywood star Sir Sidney Poitier has died at 94

During his first marriage, he began a nine-year affair with actress Diahann Carroll who he met when they worked together on the 1959 movie Porgy and Bess.  

In 2016, Poitier was awarded a BAFTA fellowship, but did not attend the event due to ill health. 

Actor Jeffrey Wright lead tributes on Friday, tweeting: ‘Sidney Poitier. What a landmark actor. One of a kind. What a beautiful, gracious, warm, genuinely regal man. RIP, Sir. With love.’ 

Poitier received the Kennedy Center Honor in 1995 and an received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama in 2009. 

He was also awarded an Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II in 1974.  

Legendary career: Poitier with Pearl Bailey in 1959's Porgy and Bess

Legendary career: Poitier with Pearl Bailey in 1959’s Porgy and Bess

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What Is An Obituary

In national newspapers an obituary (obit for short) is a news article that reports the recent death of a prominent person. Although it tends to focus on positive aspects of the subject’s life this is not always the case. According to Nigel Farndale, the Obituaries Editor of The Times: “Obits should be life affirming rather than gloomy, but they should also be opinionated, leaving the reader with a strong sense of whether the subject lived a good life or bad; whether they were right or wrong in the handling of their public affairs.”

In local newspapers, an obituary may be published for any local resident upon death. A necrology is a register or list of records of the deaths of people related to a particular organization, group or field, which may only contain the sparsest details, or small obituaries. Historical necrologies can be important sources of information.