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The Sit-In: Harry Belafonte hosts the Tonight Show (2020)

Coming Out at September 10, 2020 on Peacock


The film is a documentary film that chronicles the seminal event and almost-forgotten moment in American history during which legendary entertainer and civil rights activist Harry Belafonte hosted the iconic “Tonight Show” in place of Johnny Carson for an entire week. THE SIT-IN follows the history-making week in February 1968 when an African American got the opportunity to host the whole week of the popular show for the first time ever.

Amidst a backdrop of riots across the country and the Vietnam War, Belafonte introduced a fractured, changing country to itself for five nights with guests that included entertainment icons Aretha Franklin and Sidney Poitier as well as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy. THE SIT-IN highlights never-before-seen footage from this pivotal week, which set the stage for the confluence of late-night and politics that we see today. Belafonte appears in the film, along Questlove and Whoopi Goldberg who recount the historic moment.

Director: Yoruba Richen

Writers: Èlia Gasull Balada, Yoruba Richen, Valerie Thomas

Stars: Gina Belafonte, Harry Belafonte, Taylor Branch, Bill Carter, Petula Clark, Whoopi Goldberg, Phil Gries


Gina BelafonteSelf
Harry BelafonteSelf
Taylor BranchSelf
Bill CarterSelf
Petula ClarkSelf
Whoopi GoldbergSelf
Phil GriesSelf
Tamron HallSelf
Norman LearSelf
Quest LoveSelf
Freda PayneSelf
Bobby RiversSelf
Buffy Sainte-MarieSelf
Robin ThedeSelf
Joan WalshSelf
Dionne WarwickSelf
Aaron WilliamsSelf

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