Oprah's latest Book Club pick

Oprah Winfrey's latest book-club selection is The Measure of a Man: A Spiritual Autobiography by Sidney Poitier. This is the 2000 book for w/c he won a 2001 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album. (His earlier autobiography, This Life, came out in 1980.)

Sir Sidney Poitier, KBE
- born in 1927 in Miami w/ Bahamian citizenship
- grew up on Cat Island, the Bahamas
  • first Hollywood film No Way Out (1950)
  • Blackboard Jungle (1955)
  • memorably shackled to Tony Curtis in The Defiant Ones (1958)
  • won best actor Oscar for Lilies of the Field (1963)
  • 1967 box-office hits: To Sir With Love, In the Heat of the Night, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

directed Stir Crazy (1980, with Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor)

in the 1990s, starred in
Sneakers (1992, with Robert Redford)
The Jackal (1997, with Bruce Willis and Richard Gere)

special honorary Academy Award

knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1974

appointed as ambassador to Japan from the Bahamas in 1997
- Bahamian Ministry of Foreign Affairs refers to him as "His Excellency Sir Sidney Poitier"

JOHN GUARE'S play Six Degrees of Separation
- based on 1983 incident involving David Hampton, who pretended to be "David Poitier," supposed son of Sir Sidney (remember Will Smith in the film adaptation?)