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Iconic actress Cicely Tyson dies at 96

AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER

ELECTRIFYING Hollywood actress Cicely Tyson has died. 

Her death has sent a shockwave through the world of arts, as tributes pour in for the iconic actress, who portrayed roles that shattered the stereotypes of Hollywood-written black stories. 

Tyson’s manager, Larry Thompson, said working with the actress was a huge honour and blessing. 

“I have managed Miss Tyson’s career for over 40 years, and each year was a privilege and blessing,” Thompson said in a statement. 

“Cicely thought of her new memoir as a Christmas tree decorated with all the ornaments of her personal and professional life. Today she placed the last ornament, a Star, on top of the tree,” he said.,

Tyson was most recently promoting her memoir “Just As I Am”, which was published on Tuesday.

The East Harlem native worked for the American Red Cross before becoming a model, appearing on the covers of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar before moving to acting school to pursue a career as an actor. 

Tyson broke into the world of film with a small roll in the 1957 film “Twelve Angry Men”, before making her lead debut in the 1959 Sidney Poitier film “Odds Against Tomorrow”. 

Her other roles included “The Comedians,” “The Last Angry Man,” “A Man Called Adam” and “The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.” 

Tyson’s acting career truly began to take off during the 70s, where she starred in the drama “Sounder”, which garnered Tyson with Oscar nominations including one for best actress. 

Tyson in Harlem after filming Sounder in 1973. Picture: Twitter

Tyson’s work continued to earn her a number of Oscar nominations, including an Honorary Oscar Award in 1992, as well as a 

Some of her later films included a number of Tyler Perry’s films including “Madea’s Family Reunion”, and “Madea’s 

Her television appearances include appearing on legal thriller “How To Get Away With Murder”, Law and Order: SVU, as well as Roots,” “The Wilma Rudolph Story,” “King: The Martin Luther King Story,” “When No One Would Listen,” “A Woman Called Moses,” “The Marva Collins Story,” “The Women of Brewster Place,” “The Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All” and the TV adaptation of “Trip to Bountiful.”

Throughout her illustrious career, Cicely Tyson refused to partake in any blaxploitation films, or play drug addicts, prostitutes or maids — roles she thought demeaning to Black women. 

However, she was never one to ignore a good role that would come around, grabbing that role with tenacity & performing it with a similar passion.

Cicely Tyson with fellow actor James Earl Jones. Picture: Twitter

In theatre, she was part of the original 1961 Off Broadway production of Jean Genet’s “The Blacks” and, decades later, won a Tony for her starring role in a revival of “The Trip to Bountiful”.

Tyson on the cover of Elle USA at 93. Picture: Twitter

Many fans and fellow actors have sent tributes to the iconic actor on social media following her passing. 

Rapper and actor Common tweeted:

Television anchor Gayle King wrote: 

https://twitter.com/GayleKing/status/1354959852582432779?s=20


Dan Rather wrote:

By The African Mirror

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