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Sammy Davis Jr.

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Biography

Sammy Davis Jr. in 1989

Source: Freebase

Samuel George "Sammy" Davis, Jr. (December 8, 1925 – May 16, 1990) was an American entertainer.

Primarily a dancer and singer, Davis was a childhood vaudevillian, and became internationally famous for his performances on Broadway and Las Vegas, as a recording artist, television and film star, and the only black member of Frank Sinatra's "Rat Pack".

At the age of three Davis began his career in vaudeville with his father and "uncle" as the Will Mastin Trio, toured nationally, and after military service, returned to the trio. Davis became an overnight sensation following a well received nightclub performance at Ciro's after the 1951 Academy Awards, with the trio, became an recording artist, and made his first film performances later that decade. Losing his left eye in a car accident in 1954, he converted to Judaism and appeared in the first Rat Pack movie, "Ocean's Eleven" in 1960. After a starring role on Broadway in 1956's "Mr Wonderful", Davis returned to the stage in 1964's "Golden Boy". Davis's career slowed in the late sixties, but he scored a hit record with "The Candy Man", in 1972, and became a star attraction in Las Vegas. In 1966 he had own TV Variety show called the Sammy Davis Jr. Show.

Davis was awarded the Spingarn Medal by the NAACP, and was nominated for a Golden Globe and an Emmy Award for his television performances. He was the recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 1987, and in 2001, he was posthumously awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Fact file

Read more about Sammy Davis Jr. at Wikipedia or at the Internet Movie Database

In the news

Martin Luther King Jr.'s Thank-You Letter to Sammy Davis Jr. Up for Sale
TMZ, 2018-12-08 08:30:00
After Sammy Davis Jr. recruited some of Hollywood's biggest stars for an event supporting the Civil Rights Movement, he got a letter of immense gratitude from Martin Luther King Jr. Now, that letter can be yours for a nice chunk of change. MLK…

carolehorst
Variety, 2017-09-15 21:06:13
When it comes to documentaries, the idiom — “out with the old, in with the new” — doesn’t hold much weight. Just ask the TIFF directors behind docs about Eric Clapton, Sammy Davis Jr., Grace Jones, Jim Carrey, Andy Kaufman, Jean-Michel Basquiat and André Leon Talley. Each boldface name has ...

Music Docs, Performances, Showcases and Exhibits Feature at 2017 Toronto International Film Festival: Preview
Billboard, 2017-09-07 18:38:25
Grace Jones, Lady Gaga, The Tragically Hip, Michael Jackson, Sammy Davis Jr. and Eric Clapton all have documentaries premiering at this year’s...

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