Ruby Dee, legendary actress and Civil Rights activist dies at age 91. Ruby Dee was an incredible theater, television and film actress whose acting career spanned more than 70 years. Ruby Dee was best known for her role as Ruth Younger in the 1961 film "Raisin in the Sun" with actor Sidney Poitier. Her acting credits also include "Roots: The Next Generations." Ruby Dee received an Academy Award nomination for "Best Supporting Actress" for her role as Denzel Washington's mother in "American Gangster." Ruby Dee's honors also include an Emmy and Screen Actor Guild award. Ruby Dee's husband Ossie Davis, actor and fellow Civil Rights activist, died in 2005.