Jennifer Hudson, Will Smith, “The Harder They Fall” Win Top Honors at 2022 NAACP Image Awards

The 53rd NAACP Image Awards crowned Jennifer Hudson with its top honor Entertainment of the Year during its telecast on Saturday evening. The show recognized the achievements and performances of people of color across numerous categories including outstanding motion picture, which went to Netflix’s The Harder They Fall.

Hudson also took home outstanding actress in a motion picture for her portrayal of Aretha Franklin in MGM/UA’s RespectWill Smith won outstanding actor for playing Richard Williams, father to Serena and Venus Williams, in Warner Bros.’ King Richard. Both performers thanked the families of their onscreen personas in their acceptance speeches. Insecure won outstanding comedy series and outstanding actress in a comedy series for Issa RaeThis Is Us’ Sterling K. Brown and 9-1-1’s Angela Bassett picked up the award in the drama actor and actress categories, respectively.

Black-ish star Anthony Anderson returned to host the awards show for the ninth year in a row from a studio in Los Angeles. Anderson was also nominated for outstanding actor in a comedy series for Black-ish, which he won for the eighth consecutive year. “I’d like to thank my mama for sleeping with my daddy and making me,” Anderson said while accepting the award next to his mother. “I’m just a kid from Compton. If you dream and believe, anything is possible.”

“This is the one place where they can’t stop Black people from voting,” Anderson said at the top of his opening remarks, during which he also praised Ketanji Brown Jackson, who on Feb. 25 became the first Black woman to be nominated to the Supreme Court.

The importance of voting rights was a recurring theme throughout the broadcast, with Anderson offering a reminder of NAACP’s efforts “to ensure that right is protected.”

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SOURCE: The Hollywood Reporter, Tyler Coates and Trilby Beresford