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This celebrated American playwright wrote the Pulitzer Prize-winning "A Soldier's Play" (1981), and adapted it as the 1984 feature, "A Soldier's Story," earning an Oscar nomination for his efforts. The play and the film focused on an investigation of an African American sergeant by one of his troops during World War II, but really looked at racism in America and the army. Virtually all of Charles Fuller's work has focused on African Americans and his early career set the pace. After army service and college, he joined WIP-Radio in his native Philadelphia to direct "The Black Experience" and also co-founded and co-directed the Afro-American Arts Theatre. Fuller's first TV work was also in Philadelphia, with the 1967 reality-based miniseries "Roots, Resistance, and Renaissance" for WHYY. His first produced work outside Philadelphia was "The Village: A Party," a play that premiered at the McCarter Theatre in Princeton, NJ, in 1968. A revised version, "The Perfect Party," opened in NYC the following year. Fuller won critically acclaim for "In the Deepest Part of Sleep" (1974) and "The Brownsville Raid" (1976), performed by the Negro Ensemble Company, but he reached a wider audience with 1980's "Zooman and the Sign," which earned him an OBIE Award. (Fuller later scripted the small screen adaptation, "Zooman" for a 1995 Showtime original movie.) The play focuses on a man who has not been the best father and must cope with the apathy of his community following the senseless killing of his daughter. Fuller's other major TV credit was "A Gathering of Old Men" (CBS, 1987), in which several senior Southern black men defend another from being lynched.
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Served in the US military
Wrote local Philadelphia TV series, "Roots, Resistance, and Renaissance"
Had first play, "The Village: A Party", produced at McCarter Theatre, Princeton, New Jersey; moved to NYC in 1969 in revised form as "The Perfect Party"
"Zooman and the Sign" premiered in NYC
"A Soldier's Play" premiered in NYC; won Pulitzer Prize
Adapted his award-winning play as "A Soldier's Story" for director Norman Jewison; earned Oscar nomination
Wrote TV-movie, "A Gathering of Old Men"
Scripted "Zooman", a Showtime TV-movie, based on his play