4 April 2002 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Talk show queen Oprah Winfrey has one person to thank for her phenomenal success - Oscar-winning actor Sidney Poitier. Oprah says she's been a fan of Poitier since she was a little girl, and watching him collect an array of accolades over the years made her realise that she too could be a high achiever. She says, "I was 10 years old, sitting on the linoleum floor at home. My mother worked as a maid, and we were on welfare. Black people were still considered 'colored' at the time, and there was a colored man getting out of a limousine at the Academy Awards - Sidney Poitier - and I was just in awe of that. Then that night, he won the Oscar for Lilies Of The Field. And that did it for me, as a little girl, it said to me, 'That is possible. You can be colored and that can happen to you."

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