Published : Friday, January 12, 2018 | 4:16 PM
The 49th NAACP Image Awards will broadcast live from the Pasadena Civic Auditorium on Monday at 6 p.m. on TV One. It’s considered by many to be the preeminent multicultural award show and celebrates the accomplishments of people of color in the fields of television, music, literature and film, and also honors individuals or groups who promote social justice through creative endeavors. Anthony Anderson will once again host.
Del Yarbrough, President of the Pasadena NAACP, said the awards are a way of recognizing those in the entertainment industry in ways that others don’t, and give those not yet on the national stage recognition.
“The criteria that are used…leaves out many artists because they are not on the national stage continually. Many are not necessarily recognized nationally or internationally. But they have the talents and skills that should be recognized and (there should be) a level playing field. This is a venue that will provide an opportunity for black entertainers to get recognition,” he said.
The NAACP Image Awards include 56 competitive categories in the fields of motion picture, TV, recording and literature, with nominees who include a number of national TV news anchors.
CNN’s W. Kamal Bell has been nominated in multiple categories: Outstanding Host in a Reality/Reality Competition, Game Show or Variety (Series or Special) – Individual or Ensemble, and his program “United Shades of America” is nominated in the Outstanding Reality Program/Reality Competition Series category. Bell was also nominated for an NAACP Image award last year.
CNN Newsroom anchor Fredricka Whitfield has been nominated in the Outstanding Host in a Talk or News/Information (Series or Special) – Individual or Ensemble category. This is the first time she has been nominated.
TV One host/managing editor Roland S. Martin has been nominated in multiple categories this year: Outstanding Host in a Talk or News/Information (Series or Special) – Individual or Ensemble category (which he won last year), and in the Outstanding News/ Information – (Series or Special) category, for the morning show, “NewsOne Now.?”
ABC’s “The View” is also nominated in the Outstanding Talk Series category.
There are also several honorary awards including the Chairman’s Award, President’s Award, Vanguard Award, Entertainer of the Year, The Jackie Robinson Sports Award, and the Image Awards Hall of Fame.
The NAACP Image Awards are being held on MLK Day, the significance of which has not been lost on Yarabrough. “I think he left us too soon and it’s been very difficult to find anyone that’s willing to take his place. Not only in the black community but in the United States, period. Martin Luther King was willing to make that sacrifice and those of us that are Christians also know that Christ made that sacrifice. So—built into the creation—nothing lives unless something else gives up it’s life. I think Dr. King exemplified that as well as anyone that I know.”
Considered as the most respected event of its kind, many of the top names in the entertainment industry have attended the NAACP Image Awards. In recent years, some of the biggest names in film, television and music have graced the Awards including Denzel Washington, Oprah, John Legend, Viola Davis, Anthony Anderson, Dwayne Johnson, Gabrielle Union, Kevin Hart, Stevie Wonder, Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, Gina Rodriguez, Chrissy Teigen, Kerry Washington, Nate Parker, Morris Chestnut, Ice Cube, LL Cool J, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Tika Sumpter, Keegan-Michael Key, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laurence Fishburne, Spike Lee, Loretta Devine, Shonda Rhimes, Omari Hardwick, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Don Cheadle, Sanaa Lathan, Keke Palmer, Michael Ealy, Ken Jeong, Sylvester Stallone, Terrence Howard, Taraji P. Henson, Jussie Smollett, Gabourey Sidibe, Lee Daniels, Danny Strong, and Trevor Noah.
For all information and the latest news, please visit the official NAACP Image Awards website: http://www.naacpimageawards.net.