The 2018 American Black Film Festival Honors Announces Nominees for Movie and Television Shows (Drama & Comedy) of the Year

ABFF Honors Logo

Actor & Comedian Cedric the Entertainer to Host the Annual Event

Show Returns to Los Angeles Sunday, February 25, 2018


New York, NY (December 6, 2017) – Today, ABFF Ventures announced the 2018 ABFF Honors television and movie nominees. The show will return to the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 25, with actor and comedian Cedric the Entertainer as host.

The awards show celebrates individuals of African descent who have made distinguished contributions to American culture through their work, and salutes the year’s best movies and television shows. ABFF Honors was created by American Black Film Festival founder Jeff Friday, to promote camaraderie and a spirit of mutual appreciation among multicultural artists in Hollywood.

This year’s “Movie of the Year” nominees touch on historical figures and subject matters, social and economic issues and women’s empowerment, mixed with a girl’s adventure. Included, is a biopic about Thurgood Marshall and one of his greatest challenges he faced while working as a lawyer for the NAACP; another nominee is an American horror film, which follows an interracial couple and the series of increasingly disturbing discoveries each character faces. Our next nominee takes us on a wild all-girls adventure to New Orleans, during Essence Festival, and along the way they rekindle their sisterhood and rediscover their wild side. Our final nominee highlights two families battling the prejudice of the Jim Crow South and how their lives collide in a dramatic way.

Nominees for “Movie of the Year” are:

  • DETROIT (Annapurna)
  • GET OUT (Universal Pictures)
  • GIRLS TRIP (Universal Pictures)
  • MARSHALL (Open Road Films)
  • MUDBOUND (Netflix)

The “Television Show of the Year” (Drama) nominees are powerful, smart, loyal and authentic. From a powerful criminal attorney who tests everyone’s limits and reveal dark truths, to a night club owner leading a double life as a drug kingpin and an inside look into the world at Georgia A&M, where the newly elected president has her hands full managing personal and professional scandal and drama, to a family struggling to gain a sense of cultural identity, a complicated story of three siblings who inherited a sugarcane farm and finally we take a journey to 1983 for a history lesson on the crack cocaine epidemic in Los Angeles – television over the past year has been captivating, genuine and provocative.

Nominees for “Television Show of the Year” (Drama) are:


The “Television Show of the Year” (Comedy) nominees made us laugh every night, while pushing the envelope on subjects of sex, crime, race and politics. From an awkward Black girl who navigates the racy tribulations of modern-day love and friendships and a man who questions cultural assimilation for his family, who lives in an upper-class neighborhood, to five diverse, hardworking manicurists who try to make ends meet in an unstable economy in Central, Florida and a film adaptation, which follows a group of students of color at Winchester University who are faced with a landscape of cultural bias, to a show whose main character struggles to define herself and divide her time amongst her friends, job and her three lovers. Television comedies took risks and entertained us all season.

Nominees for “Television Show of the Year” (Comedy) are:

  • BLACK-ish (ABC)
  • SHE’S GOTTA HAVE IT (Netflix)

The winners of all three categories will be determined by the 2018 ABFF Honors Awards Committee, comprised of films critics and entertainment editors who vote for the nominees and winner in each competitive award category. In addition to the jury vote, the general public is invited to vote for their favorite television show and movie, online, via www.ABFFHonors.com, from December 20, 2017 through January 22, 2018.

To qualify for “Movie of the Year,” narrative feature films must have been directed by and/or feature a lead actor of African descent and have had a U.S. theatrical release, or broadcast premiere on a cable television or streaming platform during the 2017 calendar year.

To qualify for “Television Show of the Year,” the scripted television series (comedy or drama) must be created by and/or feature a lead actor of African descent and have had a U.S. television premiere on broadcast, basic or premium cable, digital delivery and pay-per-view cable or pay-per-view digital delivery, during the 2017 calendar year. For full details on the 2018 ABFF Honors eligibility and consideration rules, visit www.ABFFHonors.com.

This year, The American Black Film Festival (ABFF) Honors is proud to present legendary actor, singer and writer Billy Dee Williams with the “Hollywood Legacy Award;” actor Omari Hardwick with the “Distinguished ABFF Alumni Award;” actress and comedian Tiffany Haddish with the “Rising Star Award” and director Ava DuVernay with the “Industry Visionary Award.”

The 2018 honorees will join an illustrious list of past ABFF Honors celebrants, including actors Denzel Washington, Regina King, Don Cheadle, Diahann Carroll, Queen Latifah, Issa Rae, Terrence Howard and filmmakers and producers Ryan Coogler, F. Gary Gray and Will Packer.

The event is executive produced by ABFF Ventures founder Jeff Friday and presented in association with de Passe Jones Entertainment.

For media inquiries, apply for media credentials and additional information about the 2018 ABFF Honors, please log on to www.ABFFHonors.com.

Also, follow us on our social media platforms:


The American Black Film Festival (ABFF) is an annual event dedicated to showcasing quality film and television content by and about people of African descent. The festival is committed to the belief that Black artists and content creators deserve the same opportunities as their mainstream counterparts. ABFF founder Jeff Friday conceived the festival in 1997 as a vehicle to promote diversity in the motion picture industry, and strengthen the Black filmmaking community through resource sharing, education, artistic collaboration and career development. For more than two decades, the ABFF has been the standard-bearer of excellence in independent Black cinema, having premiered the works and supported the careers of many of today’s most successful artists, including Ryan Coogler (Black Panther), Anthony Anderson (Blackish), Will Packer (Girls Trip), Issa Rae (Insecure), Omari Hardwick (Power) and Raoul Peck (I Am Not Your Negro). Today, it is the preeminent pipeline for Black talent, in front of and behind the camera, significantly expanding the range of talent in the entertainment industry at large. The ABFF is a property of ABFF Ventures LLC, a multifaceted entertainment company specializing in the production of live events, television and digital content, targeted to upscale African American audiences. The company is a joint venture between Film Life Inc. and Black Enterprise, two prominent media and event companies, each with legacies of showcasing the best of African American culture and achievement.

Michelle Huff Elliott
Strategic Heights Media