Los Angeles, CA–The Critics Choice Association has selected honorees for the annual Celebration of Black Cinema & Television, taking place on December 6 at the newly reimagined Fairmont Century Plaza Hotel.
Since 2014, the Celebration of Black Cinema has honored standout achievements in Black filmmaking; this year, for the first time, the awards ceremony will also celebrate achievements in television. The event will feature 20 award categories.
Academy Award-winning actress Halle Berry will receive the “Career Achievement” Award as a tribute to her extraordinary roles over the years, as well as her highly anticipated directorial debut with Netflix’s Bruised in which she also stars as the disgraced MMA fighter Jackie Justice. Bruised will release in select theaters on November 17 and globally on Netflix on November 24. Berry’s career has spanned three decades, including performances in Die Another Day, Jungle Fever, Losing Isaiah, Bulworth, Swordfish, John Wick, and as legendary actress Dorothy Dandridge. She is the first and only Black woman to win the Oscar for “Actress in a Leading Role” for her performance in Monster’s Ball in 2002.
“Berry’s iconic performances throughout her career have showcased her brilliance as an actor and blazed the trail for Black performers who have come after her. She has become the personification of excellence as she transitions from being in front of the camera to sitting in the director’s chair,” said Shawn Edwards, CCA Board Member and Executive Producer of the Celebration of Black Cinema & Television.
Emmy nominated Anthony Anderson will receive the Producer Award for Television for his celebrated work on the critically acclaimed ABC series black-ish, grown-ish, and mixed-ish. Anderson, who serves as an executive producer on all three series, has become a major force in Hollywood in front of and behind the camera.
Academy Award-winner Jennifer Hudson will be honored with the Actress Award for Film for her outstanding performance in the Aretha Franklin biopic, Respect. Hudson’s unique combination of singing and acting talents perfectly captured the essence of the “Queen of Soul.”
Academy Award-winner Barry Jenkins will receive the Director Award for Television for his critically acclaimed Amazon series The Underground Railroad, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Colson Whitehead. The series was a transformative work of art that explored the perilous journey of an enslaved woman, Cora Randall, during her desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South as she hopes to realize a life she never thought possible.
“2021 was an incredible year of creativity and growth in film and television, and we’re thrilled to be able to honor the changemakers who are making a difference,” said Critics Choice Association CEO, Joey Berlin. “Jennifer both starred in and executive produced Respect, giving the performance of a lifetime. Barry transformed the small screen with his innovative and thought-provoking series, The Underground Railroad which he wrote, executive produced, and directed, and Anthony has become one of the most prolific and admired producers on television with black-ish, grown-ish, and mixed-ish,” Berlin added.
All Celebration of Black Cinema & Television honorees will be introduced by a prestigious group of presenters who will celebrate their work and their ongoing commitment to telling Black stories.
A portion of the proceeds will be designated to provide scholarships to students from underrepresented communities participating in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Gold Rising Program. The Academy Gold Rising Program is an industry talent development, diversity, and inclusion initiative that provides individuals access and resources to achieve their career pathways in filmmaking.
The Celebration of Black Cinema & Television will be produced by Madelyn Hammond and Javier Infante of Madelyn Hammond & Associates and Swisher Productions, an event production agency specializing in live events.