This year marks the 14th annual Essence Black Women in Hollywood Awards celebration, honoring some of the most renowned and accomplished women across film, television and the creative industry.
Per a press release sent to The Glow Up, the 2021 event is set to be hosted by Laverne Cox and recognize Cynthia Erivo, Andra Day (who’s also been tapped for a special performance), EGOT winner Whoopi Goldberg, Zendaya, and Michaela Coel for their contributions. The original invite-only luncheon will also be livestreamed for the very first time and will center around the theme “Mastering Our Stories,” which focuses on the” resiliency of Black women in Hollywood through the years—including during the unprecedented pandemic.”
“Every year, we start our planning for Essence Black Women in Hollywood with one important question: What stories amplified Black women’s experiences?” Essence Deputy Editor and co-producer of Black Women in Hollywood Cori Murray explained. “This year’s honorees and their individual projects have helped reframe and expand the narrative of Black women’s joy, pain, challenges and triumphs on screen that have allowed so many of us to see pieces of our own lives within. With the added layer of the pandemic, these master storytellers have kept us sane and more importantly, seen.”
“Each time a woman stands up for herself, she stands up for all women.” - Maya Angelou,” wrote Cynthia Erivo in a post to social media. I take great pleasure in being named alongside these QUEENS as one of this year’s @essence Black Women in Hollywood honorees. @whoopigoldberg, @zendaya, @andradaymusic, Michaela Coel—This is for us...every single one of us.”
Additionally, Essence will premiere their second annual Hollywood House, hosted by A Wrinkle in Time’s Storm Reid, featuring “thought leaders, industry stakeholders and members of the creative community including actors, directors, writers, showrunners, studio heads and others who will lead a curated schedule of interactive conversations, virtual panels, masterclasses, fireside chats and more.” Reid has also been tapped to host the red carpet pre-show for the BWIH Awards as well.
You can catch Essence’s 14th Annual Black Women in Hollywood Awards Thursday, April 22 at 7 p.m. ET on ESSENCEStudios.com and ESSENCE.com.