13 April – 1964 Sidney Poitier won Oscar in best actor category

1964 Sidney Poitier wins the best actor, Oscar.

Born 24th February 1924 Florida Miami

Ten important films Sidney Poitier appeared in

No Way Out 1950

Edge of the City 1957

The Defiant Ones 1958

A Raisin in the Sun 1961

Paris Blues 1961

Lillies of the Field 1963

Guess Who’s is coming to Dinner 1967

In The Heat of the Night 1967

To Sir With Love 1967

Buck and the Preacher 1972

To Sir With Love 1967, was set in London.

The story is based on the autobiographical story of ER Braithwaite. Featuring locations around Wapping and Shadwell.  Side roads, from Cable Street E1 like Juniper St that had terrace houses.  Lots of redevelopments and modern flats have been built around the area but some original landmarks still remain. The end of Johnson Street where it meets the railway arch was used.

Poiter portrayed ER Braithwaite a Guyanan was a teacher in a real school St George in the East that changed to or thought to be Greenslade school. This was not allowed to be used in the film even though that was the original intention. In the film, the school is called North Quay it is tricky to find  where this film location was, either a mock-up in a building on Johnson St or somewhere near Victoria Barracks. If anyone knows let us know.  Braithwaite, had actually served as an RAF pilot in WW2 and became an engineer but due to racism was not able to find work, so took the temporary post as a teacher at this school.  Lulu stared as one of the students and her hit “To Sir with Love” was sung in the film.  The film is a time capsule to music fashion as well as social views of that era. Whilst it is thought some including the Author feel the film did not highlight racial inequality enough. It perhaps in our opinion showed how a teacher gained the respect and enthusiasm of his students who had been deemed difficult, which is a universal phenomenon that crosses all ages, all creeds, languages and cultures.

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