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'Hidden Figures' and Taraji P. Henson among top NAACP
Image Award winners
Photo: GETTY
Article By Lynn Elber //The Associated Press // EEW Magazine Entertainment News

FEBRUARY 13, 2017

Hidden Figures and Taraji P. Henson had a big night at the NAACP Image Awards, where
Hollywood glamour shared the stage with somber remarks from the director of Washington's new
African-American museum.

Hidden Figures, the fact-based drama about the contributions of black female mathematicians to
the U.S. space program, won the award for best movie Saturday, while star Henson was honored as
best actress.

"There are roles you accept that scare you. And this one did, because I failed math," said Henson,
recalling that she grew up in a time when math and science were supposed to be "just for boys."

"I made it my mission to do this film. This film was very important. It was bigger than me. ... People
are seeing it because it's important," she said.

Henson also won the trophy for TV drama series actress for her role as matriarch Cookie in
"Empire."

Denzel Washington added to his awards haul for "Fences," winning the trophy for best movie actor.
Washington, who directed the adaptation of August Wilson's play, won a Screen Actors Guild award
for his performance and is vying for an Oscar Feb. 26.

"It is a privilege, an honor, a responsibility, a duty and a joy to bring his brilliance to the screen,"
Washington said of the late Wilson, whom he called among America's greatest playwrights.

Lonnie G. Bunche III received the NAACP President's Award for his work as founding director of the
Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture.

"This is a big deal for a historian from New Jersey," Bunche said. "With this award, you recognize
more than me. You recognize the power of history."

He said he was accepting the award on behalf of many others, including enslaved women who
retained their humanity and "all the black men whose lives and hopes were shattered by the
criminal justice system or destroyed by the racial violence, like that of Emmett Till," a teenage
lynching victim in 1950s Mississippi.
Copyright © 2017-2020 Empowering Everyday Women Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.
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