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Melvin Van Peebles, Godfather Of Black Cinema, Dies At 89

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Gotham Tribute Honors recipient, filmmaker Melvin Van Peebles attends the 18th Annual Gotham Independent Film Awards at Cipriani Wall Street on Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2008, in New York. Van Peebles, a Broadway playwright, musician and movie director whose work ushered in the "blaxploitation" films of the 1970s, has died at age 89. His family said in a statement that Van Peebles died Tuesday night, Sept. 21, 2021, at his home.

NEW YORK — Melvin Van Peebles, a Broadway playwright, musician and movie director whose work ushered in the “blaxploitation” films of the 1970s, has died.

He was 89. His family said in a statement that Van Peebles died Tuesday night at his home.

Sometimes called the “godfather of modern Black cinema,” the multitalented Van Peebles wrote numerous books and plays, recorded several albums and later became a successful options trader on the stock market.

But he was best known for “Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song” one of the most influential movies of the 1970s.

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Associated Press

Associated Press

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