Sister is a film about family. The story line pits three sisters against
each other at a reunion at the family home in a small town in North Carolina.
Diahann plays the oldest sister, Carolyne Lovejoy, a spinster teacher who
devoted her life to caring for her invalid father and raising a sister (played
by Irene Cara) young enough to be her daughter. The middle sister, Frieda
(played by Rosalind Cash) is a sultry, hard-living, hard-drinking mother of
one, who abandoned home for life in the Chicago ghetto. Her return opens old
wounds for all three. Though the blood running through these sisters veins
bonds them, values, aspirations and opinions about their dead father threaten
to divide them forever.
The story was written by Maya Angelou especially for this TV movie. The strange thing is that the film was completed in February 1979, but it wasn't until 1982 it first was showed on TV. There was many theories about this delay - everything from racism to "anti-religious stereotyping" (because the story involved a reverend who siphons off church funds to finance a campaign for the state senate). Diahann Carroll said in a interview for Jet magazine in 1982, "The plot is not a stereotypical piece at all. Now that could have been it [the reason it was kept off the air]. Because it is not as stereotypical as perhaps the network would prefer it to be, I don't know. Maybe it is too high acclaim of interpretation of Black life." NBC on their hand said they postponed the airing because they were waiting for the opportune time to feature it.
CAST & CREDITS
Diahann Carroll ... Carolyne Lovejoy
Rosalind Cash ... Freida Lovejoy Burton
Irene Cara ... Sissy Lovejoy
Paul Winfield ... Eddie Craven
Dick Anthony Williams ... Reverend Richard Henderson
Robert Hooks ... Harry Burton
Diana Douglas ... Rhoda
E. Lamont Johnson ... Tommy
Kristoff St. John ... Danny Burton
Albert Popwell ... The Drunk
Frances E. Williams ... Mother Bishop
Alvin Childress ... Mister Jacobs
Gloria Edwards ... Mrs. Henderson
Directed by John Berry
Written by Maya Angelou
This excellent TV film has never been released on VHS or DVD.
EXTERNAL LINKS (Opens in new window)