It was a triumphant night for black actors at the Emmys 2017. Donald Glover and Sterling K. Brown were among those who made history at the awards ceremony on 17 September.
Hosted at the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles, the night saw Glover, 33, become the first black person to win an Emmy for directing a comedy series for Atlanta. Later during the show, the singer also known as Childish Gambino, became the first black actor to win lead actor in a comedy series since 1985.
Glover made his triumph even more special by announcing that he was expecting a second child with his girlfriend Michelle. The couple are already parents to one-year-old son Legend.
The entertainer said during his second acceptance speech for acting: “I want to thank Michelle, my partner, you love me even with how crazy I get. I want to thank my baby, my son, for just being the joy in my life. I want to thank my unborn son, we’re listening to Stevie tonight.”
He added: “I want to thank Trump for making black people number one on the most oppressed list. He’s the reason I am probably up here.”
Lena Waithe also had cause for celebration as she became the first black woman to win an Emmy for comedy writing for Netflix series Master Of None. Standing beside her co-star Aziz Ansari, the 33-year-old said in her speech: “I want to thank my mother for inspiring the story and allowing me to share it with the world. I love you mum. Thank you Aziz for pushing me to co-write this, bro. Now, we’re standing here. I love you forever.”
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Waithe continued: “I love you all and last but certainly not least my LGBTQIA family. I see each and every one of you. The things that make us different, those are our superpowers — every day when you walk out the door and put on your imaginary cape and go out there and conquer the world because the world would not be as beautiful as it is if we weren’t in it.
“And for everybody out there that showed so much love for this episode, thank you for embracing a little Indian boy from South Carolina and a little queer black girl from the South Side of Chicago. We appreciate it more than you could ever know.”
Sterling K. Brown was also successful after becoming the first black actor to win lead actor in a drama series for This Is Us since 1998. The 41-year-old said in his speech: “Like, Walter White held this joint? Dick Whitman held this joint?” before being cut off by the music.
Watch Sterling K. Brown’s Emmys speech:
Later finishing his speech backstage, Brown added: “I wanted to thank our writers,” the actor began. “A show doesn’t get seven acting nominations without some impeccable, beautiful, thoughtful writing. You guys are our life’s blood, so I want to thank you so much…
“And to my wife — they cut me off before I got to thank my wife, man! Ryan Michelle Bathe, you’re everything. You make my life worth living and you gave me two of the most beautiful things that God has ever put on this planet: my sons. Andrew Jason Sterling Brown, Amari Michael Christian Brown, your daddy loves you with the strength of 1000 suns. I’ll see you Monday after work. Thank you.”