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The cause of death of famed actor Sidney Poitier has been revealed, with Los Angeles County coroners reporting it to be due to a mix of heart failure, Alzheimer’s and prostate cancer.
The death certificate from the LA County Department of Public Health was published by TMZ on Tuesday. Poitier died on Jan. 6 at 94.
Poitier was known worldwide as the first Black man to win an Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance in Ralph Nelson’s 1963 film “Lilies of the Field,” having also been nominated five years prior for his performance in “The Defiant Ones” alongside Tony Curtis, for which he won a BAFTA. Poitier’s other famous films include “In The Heat of the Night,” “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” and “A Raisin In The Sun.”
Shortly after winning his Oscar, Poitier was one of several actors who joined Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the March on Washington alongside other actors such as Harry Belafonte was one of Hollywood’s leading faces in the Civil Rights Movement. In 2001, he received a lifetime achievement award at the Oscars, the same year that Denzel Washington became the second Black Best Actor winner for his performance in “Training Day.”
Upon his passing, director Martin Scorsese described Poitier as having “vocal precision and physical power and grace that at moments seemed almost supernatural.” On Wednesday night, the Committee of Theatre Owners in New York will dim the lights on Broadway for one minute in honor of Poitier’s life and career.