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BILL DUKE (Director / Producer) has created successful careers in many areas of entertainment, from acting, producing and directing in motion pictures and television to writing, publishing and humanitarian efforts. 

Born in Poughkeepsie, New York, he attended college at both Boston University and New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, where he earned a Masters of Fine Arts degree. He started his stage career as a director of Off Broadway plays, including "Unfinished Women” in 1974 at the New York Shakespeare Festival. He went on to study filmmaking at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles, where his first short film won awards. 

He moved into acting and directing in television and feature film, making his film debut in the comedy Car Wash in 1976 and acting in episodes of such television series as "Kojak”, "Starsky and Hutch” and "Charlie's Angels”. Among his many acting credits in major films are roles in American Gigolo, No Man's Land, Commando, Predator, Action Jackson, Bird on a Wire, Menace II Society, Payback, Exit Wounds, Red Dragon, National Security and X Men: the Last Stand among many others.

He developed a revered reputation as a versatile director of films, television series and specials, including the acclaimed PBS productions of ‘A Raisin in the Sun”, "The Meeting " and "The Killing Floor”. He directed for many of television's most highly-rated series, including "Knot's Landing”, "Flamingo Road”, "Falconcrest”, "Dallas”, "Hill Street Blues”, "Miami Vice”, "Cagney & Lacey” and "New York Undercover” (its pilot episode). He won a Cable ACE Award for guiding the television film "American Dream: the Boy Who Painted Christ Black” and directed others such as "Deacons for Defense” and "Partners of the Heart” (a documentary about heart surgery pioneer Vivien Thomas).

He directed his first feature film, A Rage in Harlem, in 1991, followed by major motion pictures such as Deep Cover, The Cemetery Club, Hoodlum, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit and, most recently, Cover (which he also produced). He also served as executive producer on the films The Pact, Hoodlum and Sweet Potato Ride.

He has published two books: "Black Light: The African American Hero” and "The Journey”. He has devoted much of his time to charitable causes, including the groundbreaking inner-city education program "Educating Young Minds”. 

He has served as the Time Warner Chair in the Howard University radio, film and television department, was appointed by former president Bill Clinton to the National Endowment of the Humanities and is a member of the California State Film Commission Board as well as the board of trustees of the American Film Institute.


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