Paul Robeson filmography

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Movies and documentaries in which Paul Robeson has either starred, narrated or been featured and those that were film projects he was involved.


Year Title Role Director Producer
1925 Body and Soul Reverend Isaiah T. Jenkins / His brother Sylvester Oscar Micheaux Micheaux Film Corporation
1926 Camille Himself (cameo) Ralph Barton Warner Bros. Pictures
1930 Borderline Pete Varond, a Negro Kenneth MacPherson The Pool Group
1933 The Emperor Jones Brutus Jones Dudley Murphy Gifford Cochran
1935 Sanders of the River Bosambo Zoltán Korda Alexander Korda
1936 Showboat Joe James Whale Carl Laemmle Jr.
1936 Song of Freedom John Zinga J. Elder Wills H. Fraser Passmore
1937 Big Fella Banjo J. Elder Wills British Lion Films Corporation
1937 King Solomon's Mines King Umpoba Robert Stevenson Gaumont-British
1937 My Song Goes Forth Himself (Narrator) Joseph Best Ambassador Films
1937 Jericho/Dark Sands Jericho Jackson Thornton Freeland Capitol Films
1938 Canciones de Madrid Himself (Documentary) Juan Manuel Plaza Estado Mayor, Comisariado del Ejército del Centro
1940 The Proud Valley David Goliath Pen Tennyson Ealing Studios
1942 Tales of Manhattan Luke Julien Duvivier Boris Morros
1942 Native Land Narrator Leo Hurwitz and Paul Strand Leo Hurwitz and Paul Strand
1954 Das Lied der Ströme/The Song of the Rivers Narrator/Song Joris Ivens DEFA (GDR)


Year Title Role Director Producer
1977 The Tallest Tree in Our Forest Himself Gil Noble Gil Noble
1979 Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist Himself Saul J. Turell Jessica Berman and Saul J. Turell
1998 Paul Robeson: Speak of Me as I Am Himself Rachel Hermans BBC Wales/New Jersey Public Television
1999 Paul Robeson: Here I Stand Himself St. Clair Bourne Chris Schultz


Year Title Involvement Problem Status
1934 Black Napoleon Paul Robeson was reportedly attached to this 'historical drama' about Toussaint-Louverture, liberator of Colonial Haiti. The film was to be directed by Sergei Eisenstein and he and Robeson discussed the idea at length during Robeson's first trip the Soviet Union in December 1934. Boris Shumyatsky, the Soviet head of film had it listed in the export catalogue of Intorgkino, the USSR's international film source. film never made
1936 Oliver Law Film Robeson wanted to do a bio-pic on the African American communist, labor organizer, and social activist, Oliver Law who fought with the Abraham Lincoln Brigade after hearing about his heroism during the Spanish Civil War. Robeson was unable to find the financial backing saying that the "Motion Picture industry, and so refuse to allow such a story," preferring to profitable films of "mediocre entertainment." film never made
1958 Othello Film Robeson was reportedly going to finally bring his renowned portrayal of Othello to the big screen in a Soviet backed production. Robeson fell ill before pre-production commenced and he had other artistic commitments to fulfill once he was well again.. film never made
1959 The Blacks Robeson was considered for the lead role in the film version of the comedy play The Blacks by the French dramatist Jean Genet. Robeson and his wife/manager, Eslanda Cardozo Goode, reviewed the film script and declined. film never made