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The NAACP Releases a Statement on The 2017 Emmy Winners

The NAACP is tremendously pleased that this year’s Emmy nominations accurately reflected the work of the many talented individuals of color. We extend congratulations to all the nominees and Emmy Award winners including Donald Glover, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (Atlanta) and Outstanding Directing in a Comedy Series (Atlanta); Sterling K. Brown, Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series (This Is Us); and Lena Waithe and Aziz Ansari, Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series (Masters of None); Ava DuVernay for Outstanding Writing for a Nonfiction Program (13th); Common, Robert Glasper, and Karriem Riggins for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics (13th); Dave Chappelle for Best Guest Actor in a Comedy Series (Saturday Night Live); RuPaul Charles for Best Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program (RuPaul Drag Race); Kim Estes for Best Actor in a Short Form Comedy or Drama Series (Dicks); and Riz Ahmed for Best Actor in a Limited Series or a Television Movie (The Night Of).


“The importance of having and recognizing diversity both in front of and behind the camera can’t be understated,” said Leonard James III, Chairman of the NAACP Image Awards, “The Image Awards began in 1967 as a way to celebrate the remarkable performances and achievements of people of color, at a time when no other award show would, and for the Emmys to recognize this many Image Awards nominees and winners this year is a true testament to the work we’ve been doing. Their win is our win too!”

For almost half a century, the NAACP Image Awards has been the primary live telecast that specifically honors the achievements of people of color in the arts – television, film, music and literature – as well as individuals and groups who promote social justice through their creative endeavors.

Ensuring that strong, positive characters and images of all races are being portrayed on television has been at the crux of the NAACP’s work in Hollywood. This year, several Emmy nominees and winners were not only people of color, but are also Image Awards winners – a feat which the NAACP is grateful for.

“Now, more than ever, television is aimed at a more diverse audience,” James continued, “We look forward to continuing our important work with the Hollywood community to further increase visibility, diversity, and the accurate portrayal of people of color in the television world.”

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