Queen Latifah Returns To Host 55th NAACP Image Awards

CBS Returns as Esteemed Broadcast Simulcast Partner

Today, BET, CBS and NAACP announced that GRAMMY® Award-winning musician, critically acclaimed Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning and Academy Award® nominated actor and producer Queen Latifah (series star/executive producer THE EQUALIZER, CBS) will return to host the prestigious 55TH NAACP IMAGE AWARDS, airing LIVE on Saturday, March 16, at 8:00 PM ET/PT on BET and on the CBS Television Network, and streaming on Paramount+ (live and on-demand for Paramount+ with SHOWTIME subscribers, or on-demand for Paramount+ Essential subscribers the day after the episode airs)*. Award-winning writer, double poet laureate and activist Amanda Gorman will be honored with the prestigious Chairman’s Award during the live telecast.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with groundbreaking megastar Queen Latifah and are elated to welcome her again as this year’s host. We also look forward to honoring changemaker and poet Amanda Gorman for her tremendous cultural impact,” said Connie Orlando, EVP of specials, music programming and music strategy at BET. “Queen Latifah, NAACP and Pastis have been such incredible partners in amplifying Black culture, excellence, creativity and ingenuity, and this year’s unforgettable show will be no different.”

“The NAACP Image Awards is an important celebration for our community and industry every year. We get the opportunity to highlight the major accomplishments of artists, writers, entertainers, activists and other changemakers that push Black excellence forward in a powerful way,” said Derrick Johnson, NAACP president and CEO.

Known for her stirring performance at the presidential inauguration in 2021, Gorman has become a beacon of hope and inspiration. Her inaugural poem, “The Hill We Climb,” debut picture book, Change Sings, and her poetry collection Call Us What We Carry, all debuted at #1 on New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestseller lists. Beyond her poetry, Gorman has embraced her role as a symbol of the next generation’s potential, advocating for literacy, education and civic engagement. As a committed advocate for the environment, racial equity and gender justice, Gorman’s activism led to her become the first Global Changemaker for Estee Lauder. In this position, Gorman created the Writing Change initiative to support grassroots organizations dedicated to advancing literacy as a pathway to equality, access and social change through young voices.

“Amanda Gorman stands as one of the brightest young voices in our nation and has emerged as a formidable force inspiring a new generation of leaders toward transformative change through her advocacy efforts and poetic brilliance,” said Leon W. Russell, chairman of the NAACP National Board of Directors. “With her exceptional talent and unwavering commitment to positive change, Gorman continues to leave an indelible mark on the literary and social landscape, proving that words have the power to shape a better future.”

The Chairman’s Award is bestowed in recognition of individuals who demonstrate exemplary public service and use their distinct platforms to create change. Past honorees include U.S. Congressman Bennie G. Thompson, Samuel L. Jackson, the late U.S. Congressman John Lewis, Ruby Dee, Danny Glover, Rev. James Lawson, Tyler Perry, then-Senator Barack Obama, Congresswoman Maxine Waters and former Surgeon General Regina Benjamin.

Globally recognized as one of the most distinguished multicultural award shows, the 55TH NAACP IMAGE AWARDS will continue its tradition of excellence, uplifting values that inspire equality, justice and progressive change, and highlighting artists committed to these values.

For more on the 55TH NAACP IMAGE AWARDS. visit BET.com. Instagram: @naacpimageawards |X: @naacpimageaward | Facebook: /naacpimageaward.


About Queen Latifah

Queen Latifah is a GRAMMY® award-winning musician, critically acclaimed television and Oscar®-nominated film actress, producer, record label president, author, and entrepreneur. Queen Latifah has had amazing success since her career began in Hollywood, becoming the first hip-hop artist to be crowned with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2006. She received rave reviews, an Academy Award® nomination for Best Supporting Actress, a Golden Globe® nomination, and a Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards® nomination for her portrayal of Mama Morton in the feature musical “Chicago.” She also received an Emmy® Award nomination, a Golden Globe® win, and a SAG Award® win for her role in the cable film “Life Support.”

Making her big screen debut in Spike Lee’s 1991 film, “Jungle Fever,” Queen Latifah then starred in “Set it Off” and co-starred with Holly Hunter and Danny DeVito in the critically acclaimed “Living Out Loud.” From 1993-1998, Latifah starred in the network comedy “Living Single.” Following “Chicago,” she starred in and executive-produced the box office hit “Bringing Down the House.” Her additional film credits include “The Secret Life of Bees,” alongside Jennifer Hudson, Alicia Keys and Dakota Fanning; Neil Meron and Craig Zadan’s “Hairspray”; “Mad Money,” opposite Diane Keaton and Katie Holmes; “Just Wright”; “Joyful Noise”; “The Last Holiday”; and “Beauty Shop.” She also starred in and executive-produced the cable movie “Life Support” and the cable movie adaptation of “Steel Magnolias.” From 2013-2014, she was the host of “The Queen Latifah Show,” which she produced with partner Shakim Compere and Overbrook Entertainment’s Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, and James Lassiter.

In May 2015, Queen Latifah made her way back to the small screen, earning an Emmy® Award nomination, Golden Globe® nomination and a SAG Award® for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries for her role in the cable film “Bessie,” which she also produced.

In 2017, Queen Latifah co-starred in the hit comedy “Girls Trip” with Jada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall and Tiffany Haddish. She also starred in the 2016 faith-based movie “Miracles from Heaven,” opposite Jennifer Garner, and returned as the voice of wooly mammoth “Ellie” in “Ice Age: Collision Course.” Additionally, she took to the stage and small screen performing as the title character in the television musical “The Wiz Live!,” co-starring Uzo Aduba, Mary J. Blige, Ne-Yo, Common and David Alan Grier. She can also be seen in the FOX hit series “STAR”, which had its series finale May 2019.

Recognition for Queen Latifah’s recording artistry includes six GRAMMY® Award nominations, as well as a win for Best Solo Rap Performance in 1994. In 2004, she was nominated for Best Female Rap Solo Performance for “Go Head.” In 2005, she was nominated for Best Jazz Vocal Album for “The Dana Owens Album,” and in 2008, she was nominated for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for “Trav’lin Light.”

Flavor Unit Entertainment, the production company owned and operated by Queen Latifah and Shakim Compere, released hit feature comedies “Bringing Down the House,” “Beauty Shop” and “The Perfect Holiday.” Flavor Unit also produced the films “The Cookout” and “Just Wright,” as well as cable films “Bessie” and “Life Support.” Together, Queen Latifah and Compere produced “The Real MVP: The Wanda Pratt Story,” “The Best Place to Be,” “Curvy Style with Timothy Snell,” “The Perfect Match” and “The Rap Game.”

In November of 2019, Queen Latifah starred as Ursula in ABC’s live-action remake of “The Little Mermaid”. In April 2020, she starred in the Quibi drama “When the Street Lights Go On,” and executive produced Lifetime’s top-rated original movie “The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel”.

Queen Latifah currently stars in and executive produces the CBS series “The Equalizer.” The season four premiere delivered 9.0m viewers in Live +7 day viewing across linear and streaming platforms.

From Newark, N.J., Queen Latifah currently resides in Los Angeles.

*Paramount+ with SHOWTIME subscribers will have access to stream live via the live feed of their local CBS affiliate on the service, as well as on-demand. Paramount+ Essential subscribers will not have the option to stream live, but will have access to on-demand the day after the special airs.

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