Tavis Smiley

*Tavis Smiley tonight kicks off a seventh season of his nightly PBS talk show, which features conversations with politicians, actors, artists, athletes and newsmakers.

During the premiere week, Smiley will sit down with actress Sandra Bullock, recently named the top box office draw of 2009 and the first actress in Hollywood history to take a film (“The Blind Side”) past the $200 million mark, TV icon Alan Alda, actor Tobey Maguire, recently nominated for a Golden Globe in the Best Actor category for “Brothers,” musician Rosanne Cash, who will perform music from her critically acclaimed album, “The List,” and Bob Newhart, who is celebrating 50 years in show business.

Additionally, the show will engage a conversation assessing President Obama’s first year in office as we approach his inaugural State of the Union address.

Smiley is coming off of his biggest-ever sixth season, which featured exclusive interviews with the musician Prince, comedian and talk-show host Jay Leno, and a broad range of guests.