NYFA does not represent that these are typical or guaranteed career outcomes. The success of our graduates in any chosen professional pathway depends on multiple factors, and the achievements of NYFA alumni are the result of their hard work, perseverance, talent and circumstances.

The 52nd NAACP Image Awards Winners


On February 2, 2021, The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) announced its list of nominations for this year’s NAACP Image Awards, an annual awards ceremony crediting the outstanding performances in film, television, music, and literature of the past year. This year, NYFA alumni and guest speakers were among the list of distinguished nominees across multiple categories.

Presenting this year’s nominees were Anika Noni Rose, Chloe Bailey, Erika Alexander, Nicco Annan, and T.C. Carson. The announcement also featured a statement from NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson:

“We are excited to recognize and celebrate this year’s nominees, who at times throughout this unprecedented year have provided moments of levity, brought our communities together, and lifted our spirits through culture when we needed it the most.”

Topping off the nominees was Netflix’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, featuring Academy-Award winner Viola Davis and NAACP Image Award-winner and the late Chadwick Boseman. The film garnered multiple nods, including a Best Actress nomination for Viola Davis and a posthumous nod for Best Supporting Actor for Chadwick Boseman, who sadly passed away last August after a battle with colon cancer. Boseman is also nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category for his role in Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods.

Still from “Jingle Jangle” (Netflix)

Netflix, which led this year’s nominations with a whopping 48 nominations, also received multiple nods for the beloved family Christmas film Jingle Jangle from David E. Talbert. The film garnered ten nominations alone, including Best Motion Picture. NYFA alum, Francesco Panzieri, worked as the in-house compositing supervisor for the film which required multiple CGI sequences.

NYFA alum Issa Rae in “Insecure” episode “Lowkey Feelin’ Myself” (HBO)

Trailing behind Netflix in second for nominations was HBO, which scored 25 nominations including multiple nods for NYFA Filmmaking alum Issa Rae’s beloved show Insecure, which recently announced its fifth and final season to debut in 2021.

Rae swept this year’s award nominations in all the top categories not only for Insecure but for her lead role in Universal’s The Photograph and guest appearance on the 46th season of Saturday Night Live. Rae’s full list of nominations can be found below:

  • Outstanding Comedy Series – Insecure
  • Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series – Issa Rae – Insecure
  • Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series – Issa Rae – Insecure (“Lowkey Feelin’ Myself”)
  • Outstanding Guest Performance – Comedy or Drama Series – Issa Rae – Saturday Night Live
  • Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture – Issa Rae – The Photograph

Veteran and NYFA Alum Paquita Hughes

HBO also received a nomination for HBO Max’s The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Reunion, featuring NYFA alum Alfonso Ribeiro, for Outstanding Variety Show in which he, along with the cast, paid tribute to former castmate and NYFA guest speaker James Avery. Ribeiro also received a solo nomination for Outstanding Host in a Reality/Reality Competition, Game Show, or Variety Series for his work on America’s Funniest Home Videos.

Not to be forgotten in the streaming competition, Hulu landed two nominations, including one for Outstanding Television Movie, Limited-Series or Dramatic Special for Little Fires Everywhere, adapted from the 2017 novel of the same name by Celeste Ng. NYFA alum Paquita Hughes worked on the production team for the Hulu drama, starring Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon.

Poster for “All In: The Fight For Democracy”

All In: The Fight for Democracy from Amazon Studios earned producer and NYFA alum Lisa Cortes an NAACP Image Award nomination for Outstanding Documentary Film. The documentary, which currently holds a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, observes the history and current activism surrounding voter suppression with appearances by Stacey Abrams, Jayla Allen, Carol Anderson, and others.

Acting for Film alum Tyler D’Andrea Lambert on “The Neighborhood” with Cedric The Entertainer

Also receiving recognition this year is NYFA guest speaker, stand-up comedian, and actor Cedric The Entertainer. The actor, known for his iconic roles in Barbershop, Johnson Family Vacation, and Ice Age, has received a nomination for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series for his lead role as Calvin Butler in the comedy series The Neighborhood from CBS. NYFA Acting for Film alum Tyler D’Andrea Lambert had the opportunity to work alongside the acclaimed actor for the nominated series.

New York Film Academy congratulates all the nominees for this year’s NAACP Image Awards and encourages everyone to cheer on this year’s nominees when the 52nd NAACP Image Awards air on March 27, 2021, on BET, CBS, BETHer, VH1, MTV, MTV2, and Logo.

View the full list of nominations below:


Entertainer of the Year
D-Nice – Winner
Regina King
Trevor Noah
Tyler Perry
Viola Davis

Social Justice Impact
April Ryan
Debbie Allen
LeBron James
Stacey Abrams – Winner
Tamika Mallory


Outstanding Comedy Series
“#blackAF” (Netflix)
“Black-ish” (ABC)
“Grown-ish” (Freeform)
“Insecure” (HBO) – Winner
“The Last O.G.” (TBS)

Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series
Anthony Anderson – “Black-ish” (ABC) – Winner
Cedric the Entertainer – “The Neighborhood” (CBS)
Don Cheadle – “Black Monday” (Showtime)
Idris Elba – “In the Long Run” (Starz)
Tracy Morgan – “The Last O.G.” (TBS)

Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series
Issa Rae – “Insecure” (HBO) – Winner
Folake Olowofoyeku – “Bob Hearts Abishola” (CBS)
Regina Hall – “Black Monday” (Showtime)
Tracee Ellis Ross – “Black-ish” (ABC)
Yara Shahidi – “Grown-ish” (Freeform)

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Andre Braugher – “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (NBC)
Deon Cole – “Black-ish” (ABC) – Winner
Jay Ellis – “Insecure” (HBO)
Kenan Thompson – “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)
Laurence Fishburne – “Black-ish” (ABC)

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Jenifer Lewis – Black-ish” (ABC)
Marsai Martin – “Black-ish” (ABC) – Winner
Natasha Rothwell – “Insecure” (HBO)
Tichina Arnold – “The Neighborhood” (CBS)
Yvonne Orji – “Insecure” (HBO)

Outstanding Drama Series
“All Rise” (CBS)
“Bridgerton” (Netflix)
“Lovecraft Country” (HBO)
“Power Book II: Ghost” (Starz) – Winner
“This Is Us” (NBC)

Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series
Jonathan Majors – “Lovecraft Country” (HBO)
Keith David – “Greenleaf” (OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network)
Nicco Annan – “P-Valley” (Starz)
Regé-Jean Page – “Bridgerton” (Netflix) – Winner
Sterling K. Brown – “This Is Us” (NBC)

Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series
Angela Bassett – “9-1-1” (FOX)
Brandee Evans – “P-Valley” (Starz)
Jurnee Smollett – “Lovecraft Country” (HBO)
Simone Missick – “All Rise” (CBS)
Viola Davis – “How to Get Away With Murder” (ABC) – Winner

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Clifford “Method Man” Smith – “Power Book II: Ghost” (Starz) – Winner
Delroy Lindo – “The Good Fight” (CBS All Access)
J. Alphonse Nicholson – “P-Valley” (Starz)
Jeffrey Wright – “Westworld” (HBO)
Michael Kenneth Williams – “Lovecraft Country” (HBO)

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Adjoa Andoh – “Bridgerton” (Netflix)
Aunjanue Ellis – “Lovecraft Country” (HBO)
Lynn Whitfield – “Greenleaf” (OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network)
Mary J. Blige – “Power Book II: Ghost” (Starz) – Winner
Susan Kelechi Watson – “This Is Us” (NBC)

Outstanding Television Movie, Limited–Series or Dramatic Special
“Hamilton” (Disney+)
“Little Fires Everywhere” (Hulu)
“Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker” (Netflix) – Winner
“Sylvie’s Love” (Amazon Studios)
“The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel” (Lifetime)

Outstanding Actor in a Television Movie, Limited–Series or Dramatic Special
Blair Underwood – “Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker” (Netflix) – Winner
Chris Rock – “Fargo” (FX)
Daveed Diggs – “Hamilton” (Disney+)
Leslie Odom, Jr. – “Hamilton” (Disney+)
Nnamdi Asomugha – “Sylvie’s Love” (Amazon Studios)

Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Limited–Series or Dramatic Special
Aunjanue Ellis – The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel” (Lifetime)
Kerry Washington – “Little Fires Everywhere” (Hulu)
Michaela Coel – “I May Destroy You” (HBO)
Octavia Spencer – “Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker” (Netflix) – Winner
Tessa Thompson – “Sylvie’s Love” (Amazon Studios)

Outstanding News/Information (Series or Special)
AM Joy: Remembering John Lewis Special (MSNBC)
Desus & Mero: The Obama Interview (Showtime)
The Color of COVID (CNN)
The New York Times Presents “The Killing of Breonna Taylor” (FX) – Winner
The Reidout (NBC)

Outstanding Talk Series
Red Table Talk (Facebook Watch) – Winner
Tamron Hall (Syndicated )
The Daily Show With Trevor Noah (Comedy Central)
The Oprah Conversation (Apple TV+)
The Shop: Uninterrupted (HBO)

Outstanding Reality Program, Reality Competition or Game Show (Series)
“Celebrity Family Feud” (ABC) – Winner
“Iyanla: Fix My Life” (OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network)
“Shark Tank” (ABC)
“United Shades of America With W. Kamau Bell” (CNN)
“Voices of Fire” (Netflix)

Outstanding Variety Show (Series or Special)
“8:46” (Netflix)
“Black Is King” (Disney+)
“The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Reunion” (HBO Max)
“Verzuz” (APPLE TV) – Winner
“Yvonne Orji: Momma I Made It!” (HBO)

Outstanding Performance by a Youth (Series, Special, Television Movie or Limited–Series)
Alex R. Hibbert – “The Chi” (Showtime)
Lexi Underwood – “Little Fires Everywhere” (Hulu)
Lyric Ross – “This Is Us” (NBC)
Marsai Martin – “Black-ish” (ABC) – Winner
Miles Brown – “Black-ish” (ABC

Outstanding Guest Performance – Comedy or Drama Series
Chris Rock – “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)
Courtney B. Vance – “Lovecraft Country” (HBO)
Dave Chappelle – “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)
Issa Rae – “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)
Loretta Devine – “P-Valley” (Starz) – Winner

Outstanding Breakthrough Creative (Television)
Katori Hall – “P-Valley” (Starz)
Keith Knight – “Woke” (Hulu)
Ramy Youssef – “Ramy” (Hulu)
Raynelle Swilling – “Cherish the Day” (OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network) – Winner
Teri Schaffer – “Cherish the Day” (OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network)


Outstanding New Artist
Chika – “High Rises” (Warner Records)
Doja Cat – “Say So” (RCA Records/Kemosabe ) – Winner
D Smoke – “Black Habits” (WoodWorks Records/Empire)
Giveon – “When It’s All Said and Done” (Epic Records)
Skip Marley – “Higher Place” (Island Records/ Tuff Gong Records)

Outstanding Male Artist
Big Sean – “Detroit 2” (Def Jam Recordings/G.O.O.D Music)
Black Thought – “Streams of Thought, Vol. 3: Cane & Able” (Republic Records)
Charlie Wilson – “All of My Love” (P Music Group/BMG)
Drake – “Laugh Now, Cry Later” (Republic Records) – Winner
John Legend – “Bigger Love” (Columbia Records)

Outstanding Female Artist
Beyoncé – “Black Parade” (Columbia Record/ Parkwood) – Winner
H.E.R. – “I Can’t Breathe” (RCA Records/MBK Entertainment)
Jazmine Sullivan – “Lost One” (RCA Records)
Ledisi – “Anything for You” (Listen Back Entertainment/BMG)
Alicia Keys – “Alicia” (RCA Records)

Outstanding Music Video/Visual Album
“I Can’t Breathe” – H.E.R. (RCA Records/MBK Entertainment)
“Anything for You” – Ledisi (Listen Back Entertainment/BMG)
“Black Is King” – Beyonce´ (Columbia Record/ Parkwood)
“Brown Skin Girl” – Beyonce’ feat WizKid, Saint Jhn, Blue Ivy Carter (Columbia Record/ Parkwood) – Winner
“Do It” – Chloe x Halle (Columbia Record/ Parkwood)

Outstanding Album
“Alicia” – Alicia Keys (RCA Records)
“b7” – Brandy (Brand Nu/eOne)
“Bigger Lov”e – John Legend (Columbia Records)
“Chilombo” – Jhené Aiko (Def Jam Recordings) – Winner
“The Wild Card” – Ledisi (Listen Back Entertainment/BMG)

Outstanding Soundtrack/Compilation Album
“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Music from the Netflix Film) – Branford Marsalis (Milan)
“Insecure: Music From the HBO Original Series” – Various Artists (Atlantic Records)
“Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” – Various Artists (Atlantic Records )
“Soul Original Motion Picture Soundtrack” – Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, Jon Batiste and Tom MacDougall (Walt Disney Records) – Winner
“The First Ladies of Gospel: The Clark Sisters Biopic Soundtrack” – Donald Lawrence (Relevé Entertainment)


Outstanding Motion Picture
“Bad Boys for Life” (Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Entertainment) – Winner
“Da 5 Bloods” (Netflix)
“Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix)
“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix)
“One Night In Miami” (Amazon Studios)

Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture
Anthony Mackie – “The Banker” (Apple)
Chadwick Boseman – “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix) – Winner
Delroy Lindo – “Da 5 Bloods” (Netflix)
Forest Whitaker – “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix)
Will Smith – “Bad Boys for Life” (Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Entertainment)

Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture
Issa Rae – “The Photograph” (Universal Pictures)
Janelle Monáe – “Antebellum” (Lionsgate)
Madalen Mills – “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix)
Tracee Ellis Ross – “The High Note” (Focus Features)
Viola Davis – Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Netflix) – Winner

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture
Aldis Hodge – One Night In Miami… (Amazon Studios)
Chadwick Boseman – Da 5 Bloods (Netflix) – Winner
Clarke Peters – Da 5 Bloods (Netflix)
Colman Domingo – Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Netflix)
Glynn Turman – “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix)

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
Anika Noni Rose – “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix)
Gabourey Sidibe – “Antebellum” (Lionsgate)
Nia Long – “The Banker” (Apple)
Phylicia Rashad – “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix) – Winner
Taylour Paige – “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix)

Outstanding Independent Motion Picture
“Emperor” (Universal Home Video)
“Farewell Amor” (IFC Films)
“Miss Juneteenth” (Vertical Entertainment)
“The 24th” (Vertical Entertainment)
“The Banker” (Apple) – Winner

Outstanding International Motion Picture
“Ainu Mosir” (Array)
“His House” (Netflix)
“Night of the Kings” (Neon) – Winner
“The Last Tree” (ArtMattan Productions)
“The Life Ahead” (La vita davanti a se) (Netflix)

Outstanding Breakthrough Performance in a Motion Picture
Dayo Okeniyi – “Emperor” (Universal Home Video)
Dominique Fishback – “Project Power” (Netflix)
Jahi Di’Allo Winston – “Charm City Kings” (HBO Max)
Jahzir Bruno – “The Witches” (Warner Bros. Pictures)
Madalen Mills – “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix) – Winner

Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture
“Da 5 Bloods” (Netflix)
“Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix)
“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix) – Winner
“Soul” (Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
“The Banker” (Apple)


Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series
Issa Rae – “Insecure” – “Lowkey Feelin’ Myself” (HBO)
Lee Eisenberg, Kumail Nanjiani, Emily V. Gordon – “Little America” – “The Rock” (Apple TV+)
Michaela Coel – “I May Destroy You” – “Ego Death” (HBO) – Winner
Mindy Kaling, Lang Fisher – “Never Have I Ever” “Pilot” (Netflix)
Rajiv Joseph – “Little America” – “The Manager” (Apple TV+)

Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series
Attica Locke – “Little Fires Everywhere” – “The Spider Web” (Hulu) – Winner
Erika L. Johnson, Mark Richard – “The Good Lord Bird” – “A Wicked Plot” (Showtime)
Jessica Lamour – “Little Voice” – “Love Hurts” (Apple TV+)
Katori Hall – “P-Valley” – “Perpetratin’” (Starz)
Tanya Barfield – “Mrs. America” – “Shirley” (FX)

Outstanding Writing in a Television Movie or Special
Diallo Riddle, Bashir Salahuddin, D. Rodney Carter, Emily Goldwyn, Rob Haze, Zuri Salahuddin, Bennett Webber, Evan Williams, Will Miles – “Sherman’s Showcase Black History Month Spectacular” (IFC)
Eugene Ashe – “Sylvie’s Love” (Amazon Studios)
Geri Cole – “The Power of We: A Sesame Street Special” (HBO Max) – Winner
Lin-Manuel Miranda – “Hamilton” (Disney+)
Sylvia L. Jones, Camille Tucker – “The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel” (Lifetime)

Outstanding Writing in a Motion Picture
David E. Talbert – “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix)
Kemp Powers – “One Night in Miami” (Amazon Studios)
Lee Isaac Chung – “Minari” (A24)
Pete Docter, Kemp Powers, Mike Jones – “Soul” (Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
Radha Blank – “The Forty-Year-Old Version” (Netflix) – Winner


Outstanding Directing in a Comedy Series
Anya Adams – “Black-ish” – “Hair Day” (ABC) – Winner
Aurora Guerrero – “Little America” – “The Jaguar” (Apple TV+)
Eric Dean Seaton – “Black-ish” – “Our Wedding Dre” (ABC)
Kabir Akhtar – “Never Have I Ever” – “…started a nuclear war” (Netflix)
Sam Miller, Michaela Coel – “I May Destroy You” – “Ego Death” (HBO)

Outstanding Directing in a Drama Series
Cheryl Dunye – “Lovecraft Country” – “Strange Case” (HBO)
Hanelle Culpepper – “Star Trek: Picard” – “Remembrance” (CBS All Access) – Winner
Misha Green – “Lovecraft Country” – “Jig-a-Bobo” (HBO)
Nzingha Stewart – “Little Fires Everywhere” – “The Uncanny” (Hulu)
Steve McQueen – “Small Axe” – “Mangrove” (Amazon Studios)

Outstanding Directing in a Television Movie or Special
Beyoncé Knowles Carter, Emmanuel Adeji, Blitz Bazawule, Kwasi Fordjour – “Black Is King” (Disney+)
Christine Swanson – “The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel” (Lifetime)
Chuck Vinson, Alan Muraoka – “The Power of We: A Sesame Street Special” (HBO Max)
Eugene Ashe – “Sylvie’s Love” (Amazon Studios) – Winner
Kamilah Forbes – “Between The World and Me” (HBO)

Outstanding Directing in a Motion Picture
David E. Talbert – “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix)
George C. Wolfe – “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix)
Gina Prince-Bythewood – “The Old Guard “(Netflix) – Winner
Radha Blank – “The Forty-Year-Old Version” (Netflix)
Regina King – “One Night in Miami” (Amazon Studios)


Outstanding Literary Work – Fiction
“Black Bottom Saints” – Alice Randall (HarperCollins Publishers)
“Lakewood” – Megan Giddings (HarperCollins Publishers)
“Riot Baby” – Tochi Onyebuchi (TorDotCom Publishing, imprint of Tom Doherty Associates)
“The Awkward Black Man” – Walter Mosley (Grove Atlantic) – Winner
“The Vanishing Half” – Brit Bennett (Riverhead Books)

Outstanding Literary Work – Nonfiction
“A Black Women’s History of the United States” – Daina Berry (Beacon Press)
“A Promised Land” – Barack Obama (Crown) – Winner
“Driving While Black” – Gretchen Sorin (W. W. Norton & Company)
“Long Time Coming: Reckoning With Race in America” – Michael Eric Dyson (St. Martin’s Press)
“We’re Better Than This” – Elijah Cummings (HarperCollins Publishers)

Outstanding Literary Work – Debut Author
“A Knock at Midnight” – Brittany Barnett (Penguin Random House)
“Greyboy: Finding Blackness in a White World” – Cole Brown (Skyhorse)
“Lakewood” – Megan Giddings (HarperCollins Publishers)
“The Compton Cowboys” – Walter Thompson-Hernandez (HarperCollins Publishers)
“We’re Better Than This” – Elijah Cummings (HarperCollins Publishers) – Winner

Outstanding Literary Work – Biography/Autobiography
“A Most Beautiful Thing: The True Story of America’s First All-Black High School Rowing Team” – Arshay Cooper (Macmillan)
“A Promised Land” – Barack Obama (Crown)
“Olympic Pride, American Prejudice” – Deborah Draper (Simon & Schuster)
“The Dead Are Arising” – Les Payne, Tamara Payne (W. W. Norton & Company) – Winner
“Willie: The Game-Changing Story of the NHL’s First Black Player” – Willie O’Ree (Penguin Canada)

Outstanding Literary Work – Poetry
“Homie” – Danez Smith (Graywolf Press)
“Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry” – John Murillo (Four Way Books)
“Seeing the Body” – Rachel Eliza Griffiths (W. W. Norton & Company)
“The Age of Phillis” – Honorée Jeffers (Wesleyan University Press) – Winner
“Un-American” – Hafizah Geter (Wesleyan University Press)