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NAACP Awards celebrate black excellence in entertainment

BLACK GIRL MAGIC: Kerry Washington, Tracee Ellis Ross, Lena Waithe, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Angela Robinson, and Laverne Cox spoke onstage together at the NAACP Image Awards on Jan. 15. (Photo credit: Earl Gibson III, WireImage)

AVA DUVERNAY beat off competition from the likes of Jay-Z and Bruno Mars to take home the Entertainer of the Year accolade at the NAACP Image Awards, Bang Showbiz reports.

The 45-year-old director scooped the Entertainer of the Year gong at the ceremony at Pasadena's Civic Auditorium on Monday night (Jan 15), beating Jay-Z, Issa Rae, Chance the Rapper, Chadwick Boseman and Bruno Mars to take the top honour.

Upon collecting the prize from the stage, she told the audience: "What is going on? I'm a director - I shouldn't be up here.

"There's a lot of darkness in this world but tonight I feel the warmth on me and I appreciate it. You know why because I'm in a room with all of these dynamic artists.

"I just want to remind you that you, the audience, we love you. Artists, we talk about you all the time, we're constantly trying to figure out what you like and how to serve you."

The Wrinkle In Time director then began thanking various stars for bringing their shows and movies to light, and started to get emotional as she referenced Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous 'I Have a Dream' speech from the 1963 Civil Rights rally.

She added: "This is our time. We can say we were here when all this gorgeous art was happening, that we supported it and that we lifted each other up.

WINNER: Ava DuVernay (Photo credit: Getty Images for NAACP)

"That we did as Dr. King said we would do, 'Live the dream."

Other winners of the night included Sitcom Black-ish, which took home the Outstanding Comedy Series accolade, and its leading stars Tracee Ellis Ross and Anthony Anderson won the Outstanding Actress and Actor in a Comedy prizes respectively.

Empire star Taraji P. Henson won the equivalent actress gong in the drama category, while the actor award went to Power's Omari Hardwick.

Power also took home its own prize, winning Outstanding Drama Series, while Daniel Kaluuya won Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture for .

See NAACP Image Awards 2018 winners list below :

Entertainer of the Year: Ava DuVernay

Outstanding Motion Picture: Girls Trip

Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture: Daniel Kaluuya, Get Out

Outstanding Drama Series: Power

NAACP President's Award: Danny Glover

NAACP Chairman's Awards: William Lucy

Outstanding Comedy Series: Black-ish

Music Makes a Difference Honour: Charlie Wilson

Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series: Omari Hardwick, Power

Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series: Tracee Ellis Ross, Black-ish

Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series: Taraji P. Henson, Empire

Outstanding Actor Comedy Series: Anthony Anderson, Black-ish

Outstanding Actress Motion Picture: Octavia Spencer, Gifted

See the full list of winners on NAACP's website.

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