The Harder They Fall wins top prize at the AAFCA Awards


Jeymes Samuel’s “The Harder They Fall” and Reinaldo Marcus Green’s “King Richard” topped the AAFCA Awards, which are handed out annually by the African American Film Critics Association. The winners were announced Monday morning, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, by the AAFCA.

“The Harder They Fall,” a western with a mostly black cast, the film was named best film of 2021 and also won awards for its director, ensemble cast and music. “King Richard,” who is considered a more serious contender for the Oscars and other accolades, took top honors for Will Smith, who plays Venus and Serena Williams’ father, Richard; Aunjanue Ellis, who plays their mother, Oracene; Saniyya Sidney, who plays young Venus; and Green in the Emerging Director category.

Other winners include actors Jennifer Hudson and Corey Hawkins for “Respect” and “The Tragedy of Macbeth,” respectively; the documentaries “Summer of Soul” and “Who We Are” as best documentary and best independent feature; and Adam McKay’s screenplay for “Don’t Look Up” for Best Screenplay.

Past AAFCA First Prize winners include “Judas and the Black Messiah”, “Us”, “Black Panther”, “Get Out”, “Moonlight” and “Straight Outta Compton”. Four AAFCA winners — “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King,” “Crash,” “12 Years A Slave” and “Moonlight” — won Best Picture Oscars.

The AAFCA, founded in 2003, is made up of more than 90 film noir critics. Its 2022 awards ceremony is scheduled to be a limited-capacity, in-person event on March 2 at the SLS Hotel in Los Angeles,

The winners:

Best Picture: “The more they fall”
Best Director: Jeymes Samuel (“The More They Fall”)
Best Screenplay: “Don’t look up” (Adam McKay)
Best actor: Will Smith (“King Richard”)
Best Actress: Jennifer Hudson (“Respect”)
Best Supporting Actor: Corey Hawkins (“The Tragedy of Macbeth”)
Best Supporting Actress: Aunjanue Ellis (“King Richard”)
breakout actor: Saniyya Sidney (“King Richard”)
Best Together: “The more they fall”
Emerging Director: Reinaldo Marcus Green (“King Richard”)
Best Music: “The more they fall” (Jeymes Samuel, Kid Cudi, Jay-Z)
Best Independent Feature: “Who we are”
Best Documentary: “Summer of the Soul”


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