In 1950, Sidney Poitier tied the knot with model Juanita Hardy. The couple settled in Stuyvesant, New York, and had four daughters. By 1959, the strength of their family life was strained when he met actress Diahann Carroll on the set of “Porgy and Bess” (via Stylecaster). In a 1980 interview with People Magazine, Poitier told reporters that their attraction was practically instant as they “had not been on the set (of Porgy and Bess) more than a few days when I realized she was unique.” He noted her confidence and sensuality, and it wasn’t long before he invited her to dinner so they could chat about their absent spouses, since Carroll was also married (via People).
Carroll matched Poitier’s interest in carving new paths in entertainment for African Americans. She eventually became the first Black woman to star in her own TV show where she wasn’t playing a servant or another domestic role. Her role in “Julia” won her a Golden Globe and an Emmy nomination in 1969 (via Biography). Poitier was awed by her intelligence as he spent time talking with her and this budding relationship transformed into a nine-year affair (via Show Biz Corner).
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