100+ (BEST) Sidney Poitier Quotes Will Change Your Life!

Sidney Poitier is an American actor, film director, author, and activist. Here are some Sidney Poitier Quotes are all about determination, opportunity, empowerment, belonging and more.

His quotes are smart and timeless and even though they’re some of the most common quotes on the Internet, they’re still very cool.

There are a lot of things I admire about Sidney Poitier. Firstly, the guy is a legend. He starred in the first film as The Defiant Ones — and starred in some of the best films ever made. Secondly, he’s an inspiration: Poitier struggled against racism to become one of the best actors of his generation.

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Sidney Poitier Quotes

Sidney Poitier is more than just an actor. He is a cinematic icon, who intrigues and inspires millions. When most people hear the name Sidney Poitier, these are some of the adjectives that come to mind: well-spoken, humble, classy, successful.

Even though Sidney Poitier is a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame you wouldn’t know it by looking at him. Read this awesome collection of Sidney Poitier quotes that will inspire you.

  • “I think the way I want to think. I live the way I want to live.”
  • My father was a poor man, very poor in a British colonial possession where class and race were very important.
  • “A person doesn’t have to change who he is to become better.”
  • “After all, a lot of people are going to think we are a shocking pair.”
Sidney Poitier Quotes
Sidney Poitier Quotes
  • ”In my case, the body of work stands for itself…I think my work has been representative of me as a man.”
  • The dignity, normalcy, strength, excellence and sheer electricity you brought to your roles showed us that we, as Black folks, mattered!!!”
  • “There is not racial or ethnic domination of hopelessness. It’s everywhere.”

To be compared to Jackie Robinson is an enormous compliment, but I don’t think it’s necessarily deserved.”

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  • An appreciable number of directors have shifted to lower-cost films, allowing them to be satisfied with a more modest return.
  • If I’m remembered for having done a few good things, and if my presence here has sparked some good energies, that’s plenty.
  • “Marriage is no way of life for the weak, the selfish, or the insecure.”
  • ”So it’s been kind of a long road, but it was a good journey.”
Sidney Poitier Quotes
Sidney Poitier Quotes
  • As I entered this world, I would leave behind the nurturing of my family and my home, but in another sense I would take their protection with me. The lessons I had learned, the feelings of groundedness and belonging that have been woven into my character there, would be my companions on the journey.
  • ”Mine was an easy ride compared to Jackie Robinson’s.”
  • My autobiography was simply the story of my life.

Sidney Poitier and Sidney Lumet were instrumental in helping me get started as the first black composer to get name credit for movie scores. –

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  • “Okay listen, you think I’m so inconsequential? Then try this on for size. All those who see unworthiness when they look at me and are given thereby to denying me value – to you I say, I’m not talking about being AS GOOD as you. I hereby declare myself BETTER than you.”
  • The journey has been incredible from the beginning.”
  • You don’t have to become something you’re not to be better than you were.
Sidney Poitier Quotes
Sidney Poitier Quotes
  • So much of life, it seems to me, is determined by pure randomness. – Author: Sidney Poitier

Sidney Poitier Movie Quotes

Love Sidney Poitier movies? We do too. That is why we created this list of quotes from his most-loved movies.

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  • I am the me I choose to be.
  • “To simply wake up every morning a better person than when I went to bed.”
  • “It is a long journey to this moment,”
  • “Warren Stantin: Do you mountainmen do this kind of shit a lot?
  • Stay from underfoot and don’t get into any trouble. You hear me?” “Yes, ma’am, I hear you.” Due to past experience, she may not have completely believed me. When – Author: Sidney Poitier
  • “Racism is very painful. That’s life. It never ends.”
Sidney Poitier Movie Quotes
Sidney Poitier Movie Quotes
  • I had two roles for which I compromised.
  • My mother was the most amazing person. She taught me to be kind to other women. She believed in family. She was with my father from the first day they met. All that I am, she taught me.
  • Accept that environment compromises values far more than values do their number on environment.

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  • “I’d seen my father. He was a poor man, and I watched him do astonishing things.”
  • History passes the final judgment.”
  • I come from a great family. I’ve seen family life and I know how wonderful, how nurturing, and how wonderful it can be.
  • To be compared to Jackie Robinson is an enormous compliment, but I don’t think it’s necessarily deserved.
  • So much of life, it seems, is determined by pure randomness.
Sidney Poitier Movie Quotes
Sidney Poitier Movie Quotes
  • “We all suffer from the preoccupation that there exists… in the loved one, perfection.”
  • ”I never had an occasion to question color, therefore, I only saw myself as what I was…a human being.”
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  • I sometimes like the pictures photographers take of me.
  • History passes the final judgment.
  • As I’ve mentioned, a large part of my father’s legacy is the lesson he taught his sons. He brought us together and said, ‘The measure of a man is how well he provides for his children.

Sidney Poitier Quotes on Race

Sidney Poitier Quotes on Race is a collection of the best Sidney Poitier quotes and phrases that have to do with race.

  • “I’ll always be chasing you… Glory.”
  • Acting isn’t a game of “pretend.” It’s an exercise in being real.
  • We all suffer from the preoccupation that there exists… in the loved one, perfection.
  • My father was the quintessential husband and dad.
  • I wouldn’t change a single thing, because one change alters every moment that follows it.
  • I cannot be understood in three minutes.” ~ Sidney Poitier
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Race
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Race
  • I defend myself by improving myself.
  • The trailblazers are my role models in this industry: Sidney Poitier, Harry Belafonte, James Earl Jones, and Billy Dee Williams. I keep their pictures in my trailer and try to measure to their standards every time I act. – Author: Brian J. White
  • Okay listen, you think I’m so inconsequential? Then try this on for size. All those who see unworthiness when they look at me and are given thereby to denying me value – to you I say, I’m not talking about being AS GOOD as you. I hereby declare myself BETTER than you.

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  • Forgiveness works two ways, in most instances. People have to forgive themselves too. The powerful have to forgive themselves for their behavior. That should be a sacred process.
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  • We’re all somewhat courageous, and we’re all considerably cowardly. We’re all imperfect, and life is simply a perpetual, unending struggle against those imperfections.
  • “Generally, I tend to despise human behavior rather than human creatures.”
  • If the screen does not make room for me in the structure of their screenplay, I’ll step out. I’ll step back. I’d step back. I couldn’t do it. I just couldn’t do it.
  • I had chosen to use my work as a reflection of my values.
  • So it’s been kind of a long road, but it was a good journey altogether.
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Race
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Race
  • “Jackie Robinson is a true legend.”
  • “I would like to grow less afraid of dying. I am infinitely less afraid today than I was 15 or 25 years ago. I was most afraid of dying when I was 33, because I come from a Catholic family.”
  • “Jill and I were saddened to learn of the passing of Sidney Poitier, the once-in-a-generation actor and advocate whose work carried so much dignity, power, and grace that it changed the world on and off the big screen.”
  • Our fellow Negro citizens could be summed up in something Tessie said after watching Sidney Poitier’s performance in To Sir with Love, which opened a month before the riots. She said, You see, they can speak perfectly normal if they want. – Author: Jeffrey Eugenides
  • Of all my father’s teachings, the most enduring was the one about the true measure of a man. That true measure was how well he provided for his children, and it stuck with me as if it were etched in my brain.
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Sidney Poitier Quotes & Sayings

Sidney Poitier is a well-known actor, especially because he was the first African American to win an Oscar for Best Actor. While some may think he won his Oscar because of race, here are some of his quotes and sayings.

  • My father was a certain kind of man – I saw how he treated my mother and his family and how he treated strangers. And I vowed I would never make a film that would not reflect properly on my father’s name.”
  • “The grace and class that this man has shown throughout his entire life, the example he set for me, not only as a black man but as a human being will never be forgotten. There is no man in this business who has been more of a North Star for me than Sidney Poitier.”
  • I decided in my life that I would do nothing that did not reflect positively on my father’s life.
  • “I find myself, at this time in my life, no less challenged, no less plagued, no less intrigued by what I still don’t know.”
  • As I’ve mentioned, a large part of my father’s legacy is the lesson he taught his sons. He brought us together and said, ‘The measure of a man is how well he provides for his children.
  • I set my star so high that I would constantly be in motion toward it.
Sidney Poitier Quotes & Sayings
Sidney Poitier Quotes & Sayings
  • I learned to hear silence. That’s the kind of life I lived: simple. I learned to see things in people around me, in my mom, dad, brothers and sisters.
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  • If the image one holds of one’s self contains elements that don’t square with reality, one is best advised to let go of them, however difficult that may be.
  • I was the only Black person on the set. It was unusual for me to be in a circumstance in which every move I made was tantamount to representation of 18 million people.
  • Accept that environment compromises values far more than values do their number on environment.”

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  • Between the American mythology of “Pull yourself up by your bootstraps” and the orthodoxy of entitlements, where’s the enduring commitment for the long haul, the consistent vision of how to weave the less fortunate into a decent and humane society?
  • Generally, I tend to despise human behavior rather than human creatures.
  • We put our kids to fifteen years of quick-cut advertising, passive television watching, and sadistic video games, and we expect to see emerge a new generation of calm, compassionate, and engaged human beings?
  • True ‘joy’ is the difference between just amusing ourselves to death and creating ‘meaningful’ pleasure.
  • “I’m going to quit writing.”
  • But I always had the ability to say no. That’s how I called my own shots.
Sidney Poitier Quotes & Sayings
Sidney Poitier Quotes & Sayings
  • They have never found that area within themselves where they can be peaceful with who they are, what they are, and where they are. In
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  • How we see ourselves, how we see each other,” she said, “should be determined by us and not by people who generally don’t like us; people who pass laws certifying us as less than human. Too many of us see each other as ‘they’ see us,” she continued. “Time for that shit to stop. We’re going to have to decide for ourselves what we are and what we’re not. Create our own image of ourselves. And nurture it and feed it till it can stand on its own.
  • “I did not go into the film business to be symbolized as someone else’s vision of me.”
  • (Carl Sagan has said, “To make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.”) As

Sidney Poitier Quotes on Life

Sidney Poitier Quotes on Life – Inspirational Quotes about Sidney Poitier for kids, teenagers and adults about life.

  • I am not a hugely religious person, but I believe that there is a oneness with everything. And because there is this oneness, it is possible that my mother is the principal reason for my life.
  • Greed and cruelty are pretty widely distributed throughout humanity, as are their victims.
  • “I owe you nothing! If you carried that bag a million miles, you did what you were supposed to do because you brought me into this world, and from that day you owed me everything you could ever do for me, like I will owe my son if I ever have another.”
  • My mother chose to teach me that sometimes gratification has to be delayed.
  • The impact of the black audience is expressing itself. They look to films to be more expressive of their needs, their lives. Hollywood has gotten that message – finally.
  • “Every new fashion is a form of rebellion.”
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Life
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Life
  • The willingness to receive help and appreciate its value when it arrives, sometimes unannounced, is a subject that returns us to the question of why and how our lives turn out as they do.
  • “Jonathan Knox: I’ve never seen a grizzly just turn and run like that.
  • Warren Stantin: Everybody else up here acts like they’ve never seen a black man before. Why should the bear be different?”

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  • I’m not a library. – Author: Sidney Poitier
  • So I’m OK with myself, with history, my work, who I am and who I was.
  • I did not go into the film business to be symbolized as someone else’s vision of me.
  • Every year, Hollywood is looking for that new, white leading man and new white starlet that audiences fall in love with. But they’re not looking for the next Denzel Washington, Will Smith or Sidney Poitier. – Author: Chadwick Boseman
  • The great disease of mankind is ignorance.
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Life
Sidney Poitier Quotes on Life
  • I have always been a learner because I knew nothing.
  • Living consciously involves being genuine; it involves listening and responding to others honestly and openly; it involves being in the moment.
  • I lived in a country where I couldn’t live where I wanted to live. I lived in a country where I couldn’t go where I wanted to eat. I lived in a country where I couldn’t get a job, except for those put aside for people of my colour or caste.
  • I am not a hugely religious person, but I believe that there is a oneness with everything. And because there is this oneness, it is possible that my mother is the principal reason for my life. – Author: Sidney Poitier
  • I don’t very often read novels. – Author: Sidney Poitier

Final Words

He is best known for the roles he played in the movies. But how about the quotes from Sidney Poitier on life? How did he achieve all of this success? Here are some of his many inspirational quotes about life to guide you through your living.

Sidney Poitier Quotes are inspirational and motivating. I love Sidney Poitiers quotes because the power is in the meaning behind the words and the emotion involved.

The purpose of this blog is to share those quotes with others. I think you will find them helpful when you are facing a problem or even just looking for a boost of inspiration. New quotes will be added as I find them. Enjoy!

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