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NAACP Awards: Black Women Creators Thrive in TV

NAACP Awards: Black Women Creators Thrive in TV

When the NAACP Image Award nominations unwittingly exposed the film industry’s continued hostility to black women earlier this year, no one could claim surprise. At this weekend’s NAACP awards ceremony, director Shola Lynch (Free Angela and All Political Prisoners) was the only female winner in a non-acting film category. Acting honors went to award-season favorite Best Supporting Actress Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave) and to Best Actress Angela Bassett (Black Nativity), who did not play the protagonist in Kasi Lemmons’ musical — a point worth mentioning since only two of the five Best Actress nominees actually played the main characters of their respective films, a sign that leading roles were enragingly scarce for black actresses in 2013.)

But things might be a little better for black women on the small screen. Shonda Rhimes’ Scandal took home Outstanding Drama Series and Kerry Washington Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series, while black women helmers took home the two main TV directing prizes (Milicent Shelton for The Hustle and Regina King for Southland). A third (white) female director, Marina Zenovich, took home the Oustanding Television Documentary honor for Showtime’s Richard Pryor: Omit the Logic. A number of lesser TV awards also went to black female actresses and creators. 

The music awards were evenly divided among male and female winners — Beyonce took home Outstanding Female Artist, while K. Michelle bagged Outstanding New Artist — while the literature prizes were dominated by women authors.  

Scroll down for the list of female awardees.


Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture
Angela Bassett – “Black Nativity” 

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
Lupita Nyong’o – “12 Years A Slave” 

Outstanding Documentary – (Theatrical)
“Free Angela and All Political Prisoners” (Codeblack Films/Lionsgate) 


Outstanding Drama Series
“Scandal” (ABC) 

Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series
Kerry Washington – “Scandal” (ABC) 

Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series
Wendy Raquel Robinson – “The Game” (BET) 

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Brandy Norwood – “The Game” (BET) 

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Taraji P. Henson – “Person of Interest” (CBS) 

Outstanding Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special
“Being Mary Jane” (BET) 

Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special
Gabrielle Union – “Being Mary Jane” (BET) 

Outstanding Actress in a Daytime Drama Series
Tatyana Ali – “The Young and the Restless” (CBS) 

Outstanding Reality Series
“Iyanla: Fix My Life” (OWN) 

Outstanding Variety Series or Special
“Black Girls Rock!” (BET) 

Outstanding Performance in a Youth/ Children’s Program – (Series or Special)
China Anne McClain – “A.N.T. Farm” (Disney Channel) 

Outstanding Writing in a Dramatic Series
Janine Sherman Barrois – “Criminal Minds” – Strange Fruit (CBS) 

Outstanding Directing in a Comedy Series
Millicent Shelton – “The Hustle” – Rule 4080 (FUSE) 

Outstanding Directing in a Dramatic Series
Regina King – “SouthLAnd” – Off Duty (TNT) 

Outstanding Documentary – (Television) 
“Richard Pryor: Omit the Logic ” (Showtime) 


Outstanding New Artist
K. Michelle (Atlantic Records) 

Outstanding Female Artist
Beyonce (Columbia Records) Outstanding Fe

Outstanding Gospel Album – (Traditional or Contemporary)
“Best Days Deluxe Edition” – Tamela Mann (Tillymann Music) 

Outstanding World Music Album
“Natalie Cole en Espanol” – Natalie Cole (Verve Records) 

Outstanding Music Video
“Q.U.E.E.N.” – Janelle Monae feat. Erykah Badu (Bad Boy/Atlantic) 


Outstanding Literary Work – Fiction
“Anybody’s Daughter” – Pamela Samuels Young (Goldman House Publishing) 

Outstanding Literary Work – Non-Fiction
“Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery” – Deborah Willis, Barbara Krauthamer (Temple University Press) 

Outstanding Literary Work – Debut Author
“Nine Years Under” – Sheri Booker (Gotham Books) 

Outstanding Literary Work – Biography/ Auto-Biography
“The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks” – Jeanne Theoharis (Beacon Press) 

Outstanding Literary Work – Instructional
“The Vegucation of Robin: How Real Food Saved My Life” – Robin Quivers (Avery) 

Outstanding Literary Work – Youth/Teens
“Courage Has No Color, The True Story of the Triple Nickles: America’s First Black Paratroopers” – Tanya Lee Stone (Candlewick Press) 

[h/t THR]

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