Film director to talk about his documentary on Sammy Davis Jr.

Sam Pollard with Poynter logo.

Sam Pollard, the director of the recent documentary “Sammy Davis Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me,” will speak as a Poynter Fellow about the film’s production on Tuesday, March 5 at 7 p.m. in Rm. 101 of Linsly-Chittenden Hall, 63 High St. The event is free and open to the public.

Pollard is an accomplished feature film and video editor who has a career spanning nearly 30 years. Previously, he was the executive producer for the documentary “Brother Outsider,” which was selected at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival. His work has been recognized with Emmy Awards, the George Peabody Award, and a nomination for an Academy Award.

Before 2000, Pollard edited films by Spike Lee, including “Mo’ Better Blues,” “Jungle Fever,” “Girl 6,” “Clockers,” and “Bamboozled.” He and Lee have also co-produced documentaries, including “Spike Lee Presents Mike Tyson” and “Four Little Girls.” Pollard began his career in the industry in 1972, when he apprenticed at WNET film training. In 1993, he produced a film called “Goin’ Back to T-Town” which focused on a Black community in Oklahoma during segregation.

Sammy Davis Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me”  has been described as “the first major film documentary to examine Davis’ vast talent and his journey for identity through the shifting tides of civil rights and racial progress during 20th-century America.” Pollard will speak about the film’s cultural significance.

Occasionally, Pollard serves on advisory committees for the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts. He is currently teaching at the New York University Tisch School for the Arts.

The Poynter Fellowship in Journalism was established by Nelson Poynter, who received his master’s degree in 1927 from Yale. The fellowship brings to campus distinguished reporters, editors and others who have made important contributions to the media. Among recent Poynter fellows are Anita Dunn, Teju Cole, and Lois Connor.

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