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Special Features Index  

 
Spotlight American Television, Part 2
 
  This spotlight is the second in a special two part series. Click here to view American Television Part 1.  
 
 

Ethel Waters
Actress and Singer Ethel Waters

 
 
  Michael Jeter (1952-2003) was a versatile character actor who  played a wide variety of roles on stage, in movies, and on television.  His television career included roles on Evening Shade, Sesame Street, and the PBS mini-series Tales of the City, which was based on the stories of Armistead Maupin.  
 
 
  Cherry Jones (b.1956) is a versatile actress who became the first out lesbian to win a Tony Award when she was chosen as Best Actress in 1995.  
 
 
  Frank Kameny (b. 1925) was a founding father of the gay rights movement. Film footage that showed him and several other activists picketing in front of the White House and in other locations was shown in "The Homosexuals," a pathbreaking 1967 edition of CBS Reports hosted by Mike Wallace.  
 
 
  Nathan Lane (b. 1956) is a highly-acclaimed openly gay actor who has portrayed gay characters on stage and in films. He has also frequently performed in a variety of television shows.  
 
 
  Liberace (1919-1987) steadfastly refused to acknowledge his homosexuality even though he was an icon of flamboyant camp.  The Liberace Show was one of the most popular television shows of  the mid-1950s and helped him develop a huge fan base.  
 
 
  Paul Lynde (1926-1982), most famous for being the crucial "center square" on the 1970s television game show Hollywood Squares, created a campy bitch comic image but was fiercely closeted.  
 
 
  Novelist Armistead Maupin (b. 1944) places his gay characters within a large framework of humanity, creating a social history of San Francisco during the tumultuous decades of the 1970s and 1980s.  PBS has aired several movies based on his Tales of the City.  
 
 
  Rosie O'Donnell (b. 1962) is a comedian, actress, television talk show host, and openly gay mom who has achieved remarkable success in her relatively short career.  
 
 
  RuPaul is a six-foot five-inch tall African-American drag queen who usually performs in a blonde wig. He has given drag a new visibility by infusing it with gentleness and warmth. The RuPaul Show aired from 1996 until September 1998.  
 
 
  Composer Marc Shaiman (b. 1959) and lyricist Scott Wittman (b. 1955) are partners in life and collaborators in theater, film, and television projects with a long list of entertainment credits.  
 
 
  Lily Tomlin is a comedienne best known for the personages she "becomes" during her performances. She first gained national fame as Ernestine, a goofily caustic telephone operator, on the television show Laugh In.  
 
 
  Ethel Waters (1896-1977) is perhaps best remembered for her award-winning performances as a film and television actress, though she was also a renowned Blues singer.  
 
 
  Paul Winfield (1941-2004) was happiest when acting on the stage, but often acted in films and on television. His television credits include a role as boxing promoter Lucius Sweet on The Simpsons and a stint as narrator of City Confidential..  
 
 
  B. D. Wong (b. 1960) came to prominence with his extraordinary performance in M. Butterfly and has since established himself as a talented character actor in film and television. He co-starred with Margaret Cho in the short lived television series All-American Girl.  
 
 

 
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