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Ava DuVernay received the Inaugural Melvin Van Peebles Trailblazer Award at the Celebration of Black Cinema & Television Festival

Ava DuVernay received the Inaugural Melvin Van Peebles Trailblazer Award at the Celebration of Black Cinema & Television Festival

Ava DuVernay and Will Smith are among the final honorees of the Critics Choice Associations fourth annual Celebration of Black Cinema & Television.

In honor of her achievements as a writer, director producer and film distributor, DuVernay will receive the first Melvin Van Peebles Trailblazer Award.

During a statement, the CCA announced the award, We are truly honored to recognize the prestigious award after Melvin Van Peebles. He was renowned and visionary cinematic genius, said Edwards, whose board member and executive producer the Celebration of Black Cinema & Television, announced this award.

Van Peebles died on Sept. 21 2021, the groundbreaking filmmaker behind Sweet Sweetback and Badassss Song, which were made famous in the 1980s.

Mario Van Peebles son, will present the inaugural award to DuVernay, who has extensive portfolio of projects including "Caste" for Netflix, "Colin in Black and White" and "Wings of Fire" on TV; "Home Sweet Home" from NBC; and Naomi on the CW; Queen Sugar and for OWN; & One Perfect Shot for HBO Max.

The actor's role in King Richard was announced for the actor award for film, which he stars in the two-time Academy Award nominations for directing the role of Theodore Franklin in Respect. The actress is a recurring actor for The starring role, and she portrays Theo Roosevelt in Thermosphere.

The event, hosted by acclaimed actress and producer Niecy Nash, will be held on Dec. 6 at the Fairmont Century Plaza Hotel. The awards will come in 16 categories, honoring achievements in Black films and television.

Antoine Fuqua received the director award for film. Fuqui, best known for his role in Training Day, recently helmed the Netflix film The Guilty with Jake Gyllenhaal, is currently filming Emancipation.

The ensemble award goes to the cast of Netflixs The Harder They Fall (The Thrillers of the Year), which boasts a full-star lineup of Jonathan Majors, Idris Elba, Zazie Beetz, Regina King, Delroy Lindo, LaKeith Stanfield, Deon Cole, R.J. Cyler, Edi Gathegi and Danielle Deadwyler.

The honorees include Danielle Brooks, who will receive the actress award for her portrayal of the legendary gospel singer Mahalia Jackson in Lifetimes Robin Roberts Presents: Mahai and Robin Thede will be awarded the showrunner award by HBOS Lupin, while Toheeb Jimoh has been selected for the breakthrough award as the young Nigerian footballer Sam Obisanya.

She is also an author, a series regular and acclaimed producer on the Insecure).

Halle Berry and Anthony Anderson are also honored, and Barry Jenkins is the director award for television.

Ava DuVernay, Danielle Brooks, Ruth Negga, Kenan Thompson, Robin Thede and Will Smith Pictured (clockwise from left): Aiva Duvernanai, Robert Woods.