I was happy to join Gil Robertson, the President of the African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA), in presenting the 2021 AAFCA Special Achievement Impact Award to "Queen Sugar," at the third annual AAFCA TV Honors. The TV Honor Awards recognize outstanding work in the television industry. Honorees are selected by a special committee within the African American Film Critics Association charged with identifying exceptional content and performances in television that offer profound and refreshing representations of the world in which we live. This year's ceremony was held virtually as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and will be streaming at 2pm CT this Saturday, August 28th, on the official AAFCA YouTube channel and on Comcast/Xfinity.
Among this year's big winners were Ava DuVernay's OWN series, "Queen Sugar," which received three accolades for Best Drama, Best Writing and the Impact Award. The stars of HBO's "Lovecraft Country," Jonathan Majors and Jurnee Smollett, were named Best Actor and Best Actress, respectively, while Barry Jenkins' masterful Amazon Prime Video epic, "The Underground Railroad" won Best Director and Best Limited Series. HBO/HBO Max was the network that received the most individual honors, earning the Inclusion Award as well as Best Comedy (for "A Black Lady Sketch Show") and Best Docuseries (for "Exterminate All the Brutes," which tied with Netflix's "High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America").
Five individuals singled out for special achievement honors were Horizon Award recipient Naomi Ackie, star of "Small Axe: Education," "Master of None" and "Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker"; Breakout Creative Award recipient Michaela Coel, creator/star/director/writer of "I May Destroy You"; Salute to Excellence Award recipient Wanda Sykes, the trailblazing writer, actress and comedian; Game Changer Award recipient Steve McQueen, director of Amazon Prime Video's astonishing film anthology, "Small Axe"; and TV Legend Award recipient Norman Lear, the iconic creator of such groundbreaking shows as "All in the Family," "The Jeffersons" and "One Day at a Time."
Here is the full list of this year's honorees...
Best Drama and Best Writing: “Queen Sugar,” OWN
Best Comedy: “A Black Lady Sketch Show,” HBO
Best Movie: “Sylvie’s Love,” Amazon Prime Video
Best New Show: “The Equalizer,” CBS
Best Limited Series: “The Underground Railroad,” Amazon Prime Video
Best Docuseries: “Exterminate All the Brutes,” HBO, and “High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America,” Netflix
Best Director: Barry Jenkins, “The Underground Railroad,” Amazon Prime Video
Best Actor: Jonathan Major, “Lovecraft Country,” HBO
Best Actress: Jurnee Smollett, “Lovecraft Country,” HBO
Best International Production: “Lupin,” Netflix
Horizon Award: Naomi Ackie
Breakout Creative Award: Michaela Coel
Salute to Excellence Award: Wanda Sykes
Game Changer Award: Steve McQueen
Inclusion Award: HBO/HBO Max
Impact Award: Queen Sugar
TV Legend Award: Norman Lear
For more information, visit the official site of AAFCA.