Eartha Kitt

Performer


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In her nearly hour-and-a-half hour Archive interview, Eartha Kitt (1927-2008) briefly talks about her early stage work in New York and abroad and shares her thoughts regarding a performer's relationship with the audience. She describes appearing on live television in New York in the 1950s, on such series as Omnibus and The Ed Sullivan Show. She discusses the difficulties faced by African-Americans regarding their appearances on television. She recalls her work in filmed television, including guest spots on Mission: Impossible, I Spy and Batman (as one of the more memorable actresses who played "Catwoman"). She recounts her reliance on herself early in her career and talks about the most memorable moment of her professional career. Michael Rosen conducted the interview on October 15, 2002 in New York City, New York.

"I was in dire need of tremendous help in 1967, and like a starving cat I had to find a way to survive. Being cast in 'Batman' helped me now grow back into being successful name again. People recognized my name, and still do, because of Catwoman."

Highlights
Eartha Kitt on playing "Catwoman" on Batman
02:48
 Eartha Kitt on dealing with racism in television
02:46
Eartha Kitt on performing on The Ed Sullivan Show
06:55
Eartha Kitt on driving the "Catmobile" on Batman
02:56
Eartha Kitt on her greatest professional achievement
01:11
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On the first time she saw television; on her early memories of performing on television and her early influences; on performing on live television
17:26
On acting on the anthology series Omnibus; on being an African-American performer on television in the 1950s
11:34

Chapter 2

On appearing on Omnibus; on dealing with racism in the television industry; on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show
16:04
On working without a manager; on acting on the series I Spy
11:13

Chapter 3

On acting on the series I Spy; on being cast as "Catwoman" on Batman
14:53
On her mentors; on her greatest professional achievement 
03:58
Shows

Amos 'N' Andy

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Eartha Kitt on being an African-American performer on television in the 1950s
07:30

Batman

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Eartha Kitt on being cast as "Catwoman" on Batman
03:40
Eartha Kitt on driving the "Catmobile" on Batman
02:56
Eartha Kitt on playing "Catwoman" on Batman
02:48

Ed Sullivan Show, The aka Toast of the Town

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Eartha Kitt on performing on The Ed Sullivan Show
06:55
Eartha Kitt on working with Ed Sullivan and working without a manager
03:26

I Spy

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Eartha Kitt on acting on I Spy
03:42
Eartha Kitt on acting on the series I Spy
05:28

Omnibus

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Eartha Kitt on acting on the anthology series Omnibus
02:47
Eartha Kitt on appearing on the anthology series Omnibus
06:16
Topics

Anthology Drama

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Eartha Kitt on acting on the anthology series Omnibus
02:47

Characters & Catchphrases

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Eartha Kitt on playing "Catwoman" on Batman
02:48

Creative Influences and Inspiration

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Eartha Kitt on her lack of mentors
02:47

Diversity in Television

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Eartha Kitt on being an African-American performer on television in the 1950s
07:30
 Eartha Kitt on dealing with racism in television
02:46

Historic Events and Social Change

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Eartha Kitt on being an African-American performer on television in the 1950s
07:30
 Eartha Kitt on dealing with racism in television
02:46

Minorities

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Eartha Kitt on being an African-American performer on television in the 1950s
07:30
 Eartha Kitt on dealing with racism in television
02:46

Pop Culture

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Eartha Kitt on playing "Catwoman" on Batman
02:48

TV's Golden Age (1940s & '50s)

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Eartha Kitt on being an African-American performer on television in the 1950s
07:30
Eartha Kitt on acting on the anthology series Omnibus
02:47
Professions

Actress

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Eartha Kitt on performing on live television
06:46

Performers

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Eartha Kitt on performing on live television
06:46
Genres

Adventure/Espionage Series

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Eartha Kitt on acting on the series I Spy
05:28

Classic Anthology Series

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Eartha Kitt on acting on the anthology series Omnibus
02:47
Eartha Kitt on appearing on the anthology series Omnibus
06:16

Comedy Series

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Eartha Kitt on playing "Catwoman" on Batman
09:15

Music Shows & Variety Shows/Specials

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Eartha Kitt on performing on The Ed Sullivan Show
06:55
People

Harry Belafonte

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Eartha Kitt on being an African-American performer on television in the 1950s
07:30

Milton Berle

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Eartha Kitt on her early memories of television
03:34

Perry Como

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Eartha Kitt on her early memories of television
03:34

Sheldon Leonard

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Eartha Kitt on acting on I Spy
03:42

William S. Paley

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Eartha Kitt on appearing on the anthology series Omnibus
06:16

Ed Sullivan

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Eartha Kitt on performing on The Ed Sullivan Show
06:55
Eartha Kitt on working with Ed Sullivan and working without a manager
03:26

Orson Welles

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Eartha Kitt on working with Orson Welles and becoming famous in America
03:42

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