"Art has a deep responsibility, social, cultural, and otherwise. And that the basic motivation for the creation of art is, in a sense, to meet those responsibilities. Now, it doesn't mean that you cannot express yourself in any way you want to, but it takes place in a social context, whether you mean it to do so or not."
About This Interview
In his over two-hour Archive interview, Ossie Davis (1917-2005) speaks of his early years as an actor starting out in the theater. He discusses his early television appearances on Showtime U.S.A.:"Green Pastures" (1951), Kraft Television Theatre: "The Emperor Jones" (1955), and CBS Television Workshop: "Brown Girl, Brownstones" (1960). He speaks of writing and starring in the play "Purlie Victorious" and its feature film adaptation. He discusses his many acting roles on stage, in the movies, and on television in such series as The Defenders, the Hallmark Hall of Fame, and Evening Shade and the miniseries King and Roots: The Next Generations. He also discusses his work as a film director, beginning with Cotton Comes to Harlem (1970). He speaks of his collaborations with his wife of many years Ruby Dee, including their radio show With Ossie and Ruby (1981-82). Harold Dow conducted the interview in New Rochelle, NY on October 26, 1999.