DuFau Graham Buchanan

In Theaters September 2005

As USS Mason veteran, Lorenzo DuFau, Ossie Davis, himself a WWII veteran, forms the heart of the movie “Proud.” He is the grandfather who passes the story of the “men of the Mason” on to his grandson and thus insures that his shipmates will live on. “I am a part of American history,” he says. “Proudly we served and I want that acknowledged.”

As an actor, writer, producer and director, Ossie Davis has himself shaped American history and insured that the richness of African-American experience is presented with artistry and joy.

Born in Cogdell, Georgia, Mr. Davis attended Howard University and began a career as an actor and writer with the Rose McClelland Players in Harlem in 1939. He joined the Army after Pearl Harbor and served with great distinction as a member of a medical team in West Africa.

In 1946, Mr. Davis made his Broadway debut in “Jeb,” the first of many roles that included following Sydney Poitier into the lead of “Raisin in the Sun.” Mr. Davis used his backstage waiting time to write “Purlie Victorious” in which he starred in 1961. The artistically acclaimed play became the musical “Purlie” and introduced Melba Moore and Cleavon Little.

The film career of Ossie Davis is legendary. Beginning with “No Way Out” in 1950 with Sydney Poitier, Davis has appeared in dozens of feature films from “The Cardinal,” “The Hill,” and “The Scalphunter” through recent movies such as “Dr. Doolittle,” “Do the Right Thing,” and “On The Bus.” He directed “Cotton Comes to Harlem” in 1970 and continued to direct and produce movies and plays. Mr. Davis did not neglect television. Beginning in 1965 in the title role of “The Emperor Jones,” he’s given award-winning performances in “Teacher, Teacher, King,” and “Miss Evers’ Boys” to name a few. He’s been a regular on “Evening Shade” with his friend Burt Reynolds.

Davis’ partnership with his wife actress/writer Ruby Dee has produced such notable achievements as the television special “Today Is Ours,” “Martin Luther King: The Dream and The Drum,” “A Walk Through the 20th Century with Bill Moyers” and their autobiography “With Ossie and Ruby.”

Mr. Davis received many honors and citations, including the New York Urban League Frederick Douglass Award and the NAACP Image Award. With Ruby Dee, he received The Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award and in 2002 The President’s National Medal of Arts at the Kennedy Center.

He appeared as Melvin Van Peebles' father in "Baadasssss!" in 2003 and in "She Hate Me" in 2004.

Mr. Davis died of natural causes in Miami Beach, Florida on February 4, 2005.


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This film is rated PG
Distributed by:
Castle Hill Productions

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