Film/TV

Black actors, directors, producers, and writers within the industry.

Ruby Dandridge, is mother the daughter of the child?


Ruby Dandridge

Ruby Dandridge was born on this date in 1899. She was an African American entertainer.

Born in Wichita, Kansas, Ruby Jean Butler was the daughter of Nellie Simmons and George Butler. Her father was born in Jamaica in 1860 and came to the United States when he was a child. George Butler was a janitor at the Union National Bank, as well as a minister, a grocer, a school principal, and an entertainer, appearing before both Black and White audiences. Not much is known about her mother, Nellie, except that she was born in 1870, and had a mixed heritage of Spanish and Indian.

"Under One Roof" debuts

*On this date in 1995, “Under One Roof” aired on CBS television.

As of 2006, it was the last prime time American TV drama that featured an “all black” cast. Under One Roof was a six episode midseason replacement series in spring of that year and CBS' answer for those who wanted a drama series featuring a predominantly African American group of actors.

Beulah debuts on TV

*On this date in 1950, The Beulah Show was broadcast for the first time. This was the first American television situation comedy to star an African American.

Bill Duke gives quality to the Film industry


Bill Duke

*Bill Duke was born on this date in 1943. He is an African American actor and film director.

Born in Poughkeepsie, New York, Duke received his first instruction in the performing arts at Boston University where he majored in speech and drama. After also studying at New York University's Tisch School of Arts and the AFI Conservatory, Duke began his career behind the camera, directing episodes of several noteworthy 1980s television series, including Hill Street Blues and Miami Vice.

Yaphet Kotto, a commanding film, play, and TV actor


Yaphet Kotto

Yaphet Kott, an African American actor, was born on this date in 1937.

Yaphet Frederick Kotto was born in New York Cit. His father was an Igbo Jewish man from Cameroon and Kotto is a practicing Jew by faith. His father was royalty in Cameroon, making Yaphet the son of the Crown Prince of the Royal Bell family of the Doualla region of West Africa's Cameroon.

Sidney Poitier, a pure actor


Sidney Poitier

*Sidney Poitier was born on this date in 1927. He is an African American actor.

Ruby Dee, actress, and activist


Ruby Dee

Ruby Dee was born on this date in 1922. She was an African American actress and activist.

Born Ruby Ann Wallace in Cleveland, Ohio, her father, Marshall Edward Wallace, was a porter and waiter on the Pennsylvania Railroad; her mother, Emma Wallace, was a schoolteacher. She grew up in Harlem, New York, and was a 1945 graduate of Hunter College.

Morgan Freeman, actor and activist


Morgan Freeman

Morgan Freeman was born on this date in 1937. He is an African American actor, director, and activist.

Texas talent and beauty, Phylicia Rashad


Phylicia Rashad

Phylicia Rashad, an African American actress. was born on this date in 1948.

LisaGay Hamilton, actress with depth


LisaGay Hamilton

*LisaGay Hamilton was born on this date in 1964. She is an African American actress and film director and producer.

From New York City and raised in Long Island, she is a graduate of fine arts from New York University, she studied drama at the Julliard School where she earned a Master’s Degree. Hamilton’s first paid acting role was as a spear-carrier in the Joseph Papp Public Theatre production of Shakespeare's Twelfth Night but she soon moved on to appear opposite Kevin Kline and Andre Braugher in "Measure for Measure" in the New York Shakespeare Festival.