Tyler Perry has yet to crack the Oscar ceiling, but the multi-hyphenate took home the gold at the NAACP Image Awards Friday night (March 4), winning Best Director and Best Picture for his “For Colored Girls. The flick also nabbed a statue for co-star Kimberly Elise, who won for Best Supporting Actress.
Based on Ntozake Shange’s 1974 Broadway hit “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf,” Perry’s film follows the lives of nine black women in and around Harlem, all of whom are confronted with an interpersonal crisis.
While ostensibly about trouble and heartbreak, the flick is really about “basic human love and regard for one another,” Elise told MTV News .
“[It's a] great statement on sisterhood and community,” Elise said of the movie. “I think you do leave the film feeling like, ‘I am woman, I can do this, I can stand on top of this pain and especially with my sisters around me.’”
To nab the award, Elise had to best three of her co-stars from the ensemble flick, Anika Noni Rose, Phylicia Rashad, and Oscar winner Whoopi Goldberg. The fifth nominee, Jill Scott, was also singled out for her performance in a Perry flick, “Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married Too?”
Among other film winners, double Oscar winner Denzel Washington took the trophy as Best Actor for “The Book of Eli,” Halle Berry won Best Actress for “Frankie & Alice,” and Samuel L. Jackson nabbed Best Supporting Actor for his turn in “Mother and Child.”
In the musical categories, Usher, who recently agreed to donate to charity all proceeds from an appearance at a New Year’s Eve concert linked to Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi, won Best Male Artist and Mary J. Blige won for Best Female Artist.
Presented by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the NAACP Image Awards celebrate “the outstanding achievements and performances of people of color in the arts,” according to their website.