HOLLYWOOD—It was a night full of laughs and surprises, as the 47th Annual NAACP Awards were held in Pasadena, California celebrating the best in music, film and television. The ceremony was hosted by “Black-ish” star Anthony Anderson who kicked off the ceremony with a parody of NWA that showed Anderson could roc-a-mic better than some of the rappers out today.
Of course he took jabs at the entertainment industry amidst the entire scandal involving the lack of minorities in the acting categories. He did not have any problem taking jabs at Stacy Dash for her comments made a few weeks ago, President Barack Obama, FOX News and diversity in the industry. He did address a pressing issue regarding the water crisis in Flint, Michigan which can use all the help they can get.
The prize for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture went to Sanaa Lathan for “The Perfect Guy,” who was a bit surprised by her win as she took to the stage. The host Anthony Anderson picked up an award for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series for “Black-ish” and thanked his mother in his speech for her contributions to supporting him throughout his career.
Gabrielle Union and Keegan Michael Key had a funny bit as they handed out the award for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series to Tracee Ellis Ross in “Black-ish.” Ross did deliver an inspirational speech giving accolades to her fellow nominees. The prize for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series was one hell of a competitive race, but it was Cookie aka Taraji P. Henson from “Empire” who reigned supreme for the second consecutive year.
John Legend was honored with the President’s Award for all of his humanitarian work throughout his career. Paving the way for Legend to hit the stage was “Empire” star Jussie Smollett who sang one of the musician’s biggest hits “Ordinary People.” Alice Smith later sang John’s Oscar-winning single “Glory.” He later took to the stage to deliver a rousing performance of his hit “All of Me,” which left the crowd in awe and standing to their feet after he ended his performance.
It was another win for “Empire” as Terrence Howard claimed the award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series for his work performance as Lucious Lyon. The NAACP award for Outstanding Comedy Series went to “Black-ish,” while Outstanding Drama Series was a win for the series “Empire.” The amazing Viola Davis delivered the NAACP award for Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture to Michael B. Jordan for his performance in the boxing drama “Creed.”
The prize for Outstanding Motion Picture was a win for “Straight Outta Compton,” which saw producers Ice Cube and F. Gary Gray and the cast of the film taking to the stage to accept the award. The night closed with Taraji P. Henson who presented the accolade for Entertainer of the Year to Michael B. Jordan who was slightly stunned with his win.
So amidst all the controversy with the lack of minorities nominated for the ‘Big Dance,’ the NAACP awards shed light on the importance of diversity in the entertainment industry. So the next big ceremony on the menu is the Grammy awards!