‘Judas and the Black Messiah’ Named Best Film By African American Film Critics Association

African American Film Critics Association has released its annual list of recipients for the 12th AAFCA Awards with Judas and the Black Messiah being named the year’s Best Picture by the world’s largest group of Black film critics. The Fred Hampton-Bill O’Neal drama took home the most awards with a Breakout Director nod for Shaka King as well as Best Supporting Actor and Actress wins for Daniel Kaluuya and Dominique Fishback, respectively.

“Serving alongside an all-Black producing team, Judas and the Black Messiah director Shaka King created a project that permanently enshrines pivotal Black Panther leader Fred Hampton as an American hero,” commented AAFCA President and co-founder Gil Robertson. “Released against the backdrop of the present-day Black Lives Matter movement, the film’s message of commitment and sacrifice to social justice is empowering. Daniel Kaluuya as Hampton is literally on fire and is supported well by Dominique Fishback who increasingly has become an actress to watch. Our members are thrilled to award the film with our highest honor.”

Amazon’s One Night In Miami nabbed three recognitions with Regina King for Best Director, Kemp Powers receiving Best Screenplay, and the Best Ensemble award. The late Chadwick Boseman was named Best Actor for his performance in Netflix’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, while Andra Day, in her first major acting role, earned the Best Actress award for The United States vs. Billie Holiday.

“Our Best Actress winner Andra Day was phenomenal as Billie Holiday,” said Robertson. “Director Lee Daniels has a terrific knack for bringing out the very best from his actors and Day is no exception as she delivered a performance that serves as an impressive launch to an acting career we feel has great promise. The members of AAFCA are excited to see even more of her range in the future.”

He continued, “In Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Chadwick Boseman again showcased a great understanding and execution of the acting craft. In what is the final performance of his career, he confirmed why he will forever be considered one of the best actors of his generation. AAFCA is tremendously pleased to honor him for this extraordinary performance.”

The newly announced award recipients will be joining honorees Mariah Carey, George C. Wolfe, Netflix, and voter suppression documentary, All In: The Fight for Democracy, all of whom were previously announced as the winners of AAFCA Special Achievement Awards. The ceremony will take place on April 7.

See the complete list of honoree for the 12th annual AAFCA Awards:

Best Picture: Judas and the Black Messiah (Warner Bros.)

Best Director: Regina King, One Night In Miami (Amazon Studios)

Best Actor: Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Netflix)

Best Actress: Andra Day, The United States vs. Billie Holiday (Hulu)

Best Supporting Actor: Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah (Warner Bros.)

Best Supporting Actress: Dominique Fishback, Judas and the Black Messiah (Warner Bros.)

Best Screenplay: Kemp Powers, One Night in Miami (Amazon Studios)

Best Ensemble: One Night In Miami (Amazon Studios)

Best Foreign Film: Night of the Kings (Neon)

Best Documentary: All In: The Fight For Democracy (Amazon Studios)

Best Animation: Soul (Pixar/Disney)

Best Short Film: Two Distant Strangers

Breakout Performance: Radha Blank (Netflix)

Breakout Director: Shaka King (Warner Bros.)

The organization also unveiled its Top 10 films of the year:

“The common theme with all of our Top 10 Films this year is the grace of humanity. All of these films spotlighted different circumstances that put the human spirit to a test. During a year when COVID-19 forced everyone on this planet to unite against a common threat to our health and well-being, these films spoke to the resilience and courage we all possess to overcome challenging odds. The AAFCA members were deeply heartened and inspired by these amazing stories as we also look forward to a return to “going to the movies” with our family and friends,” said Robertson.

Judas And The Black Messiah
One Night In Miami
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Night Of The Kings
American Skin
Da 5 Bloods
Miss Juneteenth
The United States Vs. Billie Holiday



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