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Tavis Smiley

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation With Jack Black

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.24.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Tonight, I'm joined by Jack Black, one of this generation's most beloved comedic actors. The star of hit films like School of Rock and Kung Fu Panda currently has his hands in multiple projects, including the upcoming HBO series The Brink.

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation on the Fight for $15 with Saru Jayaraman

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.23.2015 | Politics
Tavis Smiley

Saru explains why the food industry, despite being one of the most profitable industries in the country, pays its workers such low wages -- the federal tipped minimum wage, for example, which goes to workers who are expected to receive tips (like servers in restaurants), is still just $2.13 per hour.​

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation With Freida Pinto on Breaking Cultural Stereotypes

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.23.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

In this clip, Freida shares what drew her to her latest film, Desert Dancer, and how her experience making the film has educated her on the beauty of the often-stereotyped Iranian people.

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation With Noam Chomsky on How the World Map Encourages Racist Attitudes

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.15.2015 | Media
Tavis Smiley

Called "arguably the most important intellectual alive" by the New York Times, Chomsky joins us for a nuanced discussion on the ways in which culture and curricula are used to advance a Western worldview.

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation With Isaiah Washington on Black Identity

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.14.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Tonight on PBS, I'm joined by NAACP Image Award and SAG Award-winning actor Isaiah Washington, star of the upcoming feature, Blackbird. In the film, which he also produced, Isaiah plays the father of a devout Christian teenager struggling with his true identity.

My Conversation on the Legacy of the Civil War, 150 Years Later

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.09.2015 | TV
Tavis Smiley

I'm joined by Daina Ramey Berry, Eric Walther, and Allyson Hobbs, three scholars of American history, to unpack the causes and consequences -- both immediate and enduring -- of the deadliest war in U.S. history. In the clip the panel reflects on the period of Reconstruction immediately following the war, and on the incompleteness of a landless emancipation.

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation With Dr. Darnell Hunt on Diversity in Hollywood

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.03.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

In this clip, Dr. Darnell Hunt, the director of the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies at UCLA, explains why more people of color are needed in Hollywood's executive suites.

A Maya Angelou Play Is Finally In The Works

AP | LYNN ELBER | Posted 04.01.2015 | Arts

LOS ANGELES (AP) — In the nearly 30-year friendship that Tavis Smiley shared with Maya Angelou, he learned the renowned writer's views on life and h...

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation With Lenny Kravitz

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.19.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

As someone constantly in the public eye, Kravitz decided during his world tour to turn his camera on the folks -- professionals and fans -- who turn their cameras on him. The result is a surreal exploration into what he sees from day to day.

Tavis Smiley: My Conversation With J. Cole on What Really Matters in Life

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.17.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

His latest and most personal project to date, entitled 2014 Forest Hills Drive, is a reflection on how a boy from North Carolina discovered his life's purpose. In this clip, J. Cole opens up about one particularly significant track on the album, "Love Yourz."

My Conversation With Mike Epps on Playing Richard Pryor

Tavis Smiley | Posted 02.25.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Tonight I'm joined by actor and comedian Mike Epps. It was recently announced that Mike will play legendary comedian Richard Pryor in an upcoming biopic, to be directed by Lee Daniels. In this clip Mike shares his thoughts on portraying such an iconic figure and gives us a small taste of what to expect from his performance.

My Conversation on Hip-Hop With Geraldo Rivera

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.26.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Rivera recently found himself in hot water after making some controversial remarks about the impact that Hip-Hop has had on minority communities.​​ In this clip he explains his position but concedes that in describing Hip-Hop in general as being harmful to young minorities, he may have painted with too broad a brush.

My Conversation With Garrett Morris

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.15.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Tonight I'm joined by actor and comedian Garrett Morris, one of the original cast members of Saturday Night Live. In the clip I ask Garrett which of his many memorable SNL characters is his all-time favorite.

My Conversation With Eddie Redmayne

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.12.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

I'm joined by actor Eddie Redmayne, the Golden Globe-winning and Academy Award-nominated star of the hit film The Theory of Everything, which portrays the story of real-life theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking. In the clip, Eddie shares how his own outlook on life has changed after having interacted with Hawking and others impacted by ALS.

What Is Your Legacy?

Katherine Meadowcroft | Posted 04.07.2015 | Healthy Living
Katherine Meadowcroft

A legacy should be deeply considered. It takes on immortality, and it is how we live on after death. If we think of our legacy as a gift, it places an emphasis on the thoughtful, meaningful, and intentional aspects of legacy. The consequences of what we do now will outlive us.

My Conversation About 'Ghettoside' With Jill Leovy

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.05.2015 | Books
Tavis Smiley

On Wednesday night I'm joined by award-winning crime reporter Jill Leovy, who has just published her first book, Ghettoside, ​in which she argues that we need to direct national attention to black-on-black murders. In the clip I ask Jill why she thinks there has been such enthusiasm from non-black authors and critics for her book's framing of the issue.

My Conversation With Kevin Costner

Tavis Smiley | Posted 04.04.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

I'm joined by Academy Award, Golden Globe, and Emmy winner Kevin Costner. In the veteran actor's new project, Black or White, he plays a grandfather who finds himself in a custody battle over his biracial granddaughter. In this clip, Kevin describes the powerful reaction he had upon first reading the thought-provoking script.

My Conversation With Damien Chazelle

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.31.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Tonight I'm joined by Academy Award-nominated writer/director Damien Chazelle. The barely 30-year-old filmmaker has taken Hollywood by storm with his critically acclaimed film Whiplash, which has garnered a total of five Oscar nods, including Best Picture.

A Two-Night Conversation on Free Speech

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.28.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

I ask comedian Roseanne Barr whether there's a fine line between what is offensive and distasteful, and what constitutes an abuse of free speech.

My Conversation With Jeffrey Sachs

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.24.2015 | Politics
Tavis Smiley

For more than a quarter century, Sachs, described by The New York Times as "probably the most important economist in the world," has advised governments around the globe on progressive policy. In the clip, he analyzes our own system in the U.S. and reflects on the fifth anniversary of the Citizens United Supreme Court decision.

My Conversation With Benedict Cumberbatch

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.23.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

In his critically acclaimed film The Imitation Game, he portrays real-life British mathematician Alan Turing, whose technological ingenuity helped break the encrypted Nazi communications code to help the Allies win World War II. In this clip he reveals why his parents initially tried to dissuade him from acting, and what led him to continue to follow his dream.

My Conversation With Laura Poitras

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.18.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Citizenfour chronicles the eight days Poitras, Glenn Greenwald and Ewan MacAllister of The Guardian spent with Edward Snowden in Hong Kong as he handed over classified documents providing evidence of mass indiscriminate and illegal invasions of privacy by the NSA.

My Conversation With Sen. Cory Booker and Sen. Tim Scott

Tavis Smiley | Posted 03.15.2015 | Politics
Tavis Smiley

While they are proud members of opposing political parties, their ability to speak thoughtfully and civilly to one another should serve as a lesson to both Democrats and Republicans that conversations free of partisan sniping and vitriol are possible across the political aisle.

My Conversation With Lindsey Buckingham

Tavis Smiley | Posted 02.16.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Tonight, I'm joined by Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Lindsey Buckingham, who reflects on his career with one of the most critically acclaimed musical groups of all time, Fleetwood Mac.

My Conversation With Angelina Jolie

Tavis Smiley | Posted 02.15.2015 | Entertainment
Tavis Smiley

Tonight I'm joined by Academy Award-winning actress and director Angelina Jolie. Her film, Unbroken which tells the real life story of Olympian Louis Zamperini's heroic struggle to stay alive during his captivity as a POW during World War Two, opens on Christmas Day.