Leadbelly (1976)


Biography of the legendary musician Huddie Leadbetter “Leadbelly” that deals with the problems he had in his youth due to racial segregation including his time and prison and his efforts to conquer a position in the world of music.

Director: Gordon Parks.
Writer: Ernest Kinoy.
Stars: Roger E. Mosley, James Brodhead, John McDonald, Leonard Wrentz, Ernie Hudson, Dana Manno, William Wintersole, Paul Benjamin, Lynn Hamilton, Carole Lamond, Melba Englander, Pamela Singleton, Rozaa Jean, Nat Williams, Madge Sinclair, George Williams, Timothy Pickard, Rhetta Greene, Art Evans, William Creamer, Dearl Croft, John C. Johnson, Bill Woodard, Robert C. Farrow, Albert Hall, Peter Harrell, B.T. Henderson, Denny Arnold, James Taylor, Vivian Bonnell, Alan Manson, John Henry Faulk, Valerie Odell, Drew Thomas, John Keith.
Composer: Fred Karlin.
Cinematographer: Bruce Surtees.

English subtitles are available for this movie, to enable them on the video player click on the cogwheel, select the last option (субтитры), then click on “ENG”.


RIP Roger E. Mosley (1938-2022).

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  1. December 27, 2022

    Brilliant! As a Lead Belly fan I’ve wanted to see this for years! Thanks Jon 🙂

  2. Gregory
    December 27, 2022

    While this and his semi-autobiographical THE LEARNING TREE (1969) are somewhat maligned these days as being too middle-of-the-road politically, Renaissance Man / Photographer Gordon Parks was THE FIRST African American film director to get major studio backing and release of his films. Above-ground films concerned with African American history and lives really begins with him. As with Barton, I am looking forward to watching this. Thanks. Jon.

  3. Jonathan Shapiro
    December 29, 2022

    Gordon Parks, Bill Gunn (STOP, which WB dumped, but has finally leaked) and Ossie Davis (COTTON COMES TO HARLEM) are got studio backing at roughly the same time
    LEADBELLY is probably my favourite film of Parks’ and one of the best biopics ever. Just stunning.

    December 30, 2022

    Can STOP! (1970) be found anywhere Jonathan? I sure would like to see it. BTW, Jon, thanks so much for posting this. I enjoyed it a great deal.

    • DiscoVampire
      July 11, 2023

      “Stop!” can be found on the Internet Archive.

  5. Torin Doyle
    May 17, 2024

    A good film, albeit a bit long. Perhaps it could have been reduced by about 30 minutes.

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