This Day in Black History: March 10, 1972

Maya Angelou became the first Black woman to have a screenplay produced into a film with Georgia, Georgia.

Posted: 02/24/2014 07:35 PM EST

Maya Angelou is a poet, novelist, screenwriter and more a renaissance woman if you will. While currently in her 80s, she is known for her many memoirs and occasional film roles; it is easy to forget that Angelou was also a screenwriter. She became the first Black woman to ever have a motion picture produced when her film Georgia, Georgia premiered on March 10, 1972.

The film tells the love story of an African-American singer who goes to Stockholm for a show and falls in love a white American man. While their love is genuine, so is the hate of those around them who rebuked the idea of interracial dating.

The film featured a diverse cast including Diana Sands as Georgia Martin (she died at the age of 39 a year after the film was released) and Michael Winters as Dirk Benedict. The film showed an American audience that racism went beyond American soil addressing stereotypes about race, sex, class and African-American women. For its unique narrative and boastful storyline, Georgia, Georgia gained international acclaim and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.  

Follow Dominique Zonyéé on Twitter: @DominiqueZonyee.

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 (Photo: Jack Sotomayor/New York Times Co./Getty Images)

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