Criticized for being historically inaccurate, "The Great Debaters" was hailed as the top leader at the 39th NAACP Image Awards nominations. The drama film got a staggering 8 nominations, including Outstanding Motion Picture, in the nominees announcement made on Tuesday, January 8.
The film that is based on the real-life victories of a black debating team in the 1930s also brought about two nods for its actor and director, Denzel Washington. The Academy Award-winning actor was nominated for Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture as well as Outstanding Directing in a Motion Picture.
Beside Washington, "Debaters" also put up its actress and actors on other counts. Jurnee Smollett got gong for Outstanding Actress in Motion Pictures, while Forest Whitaker, Nate Parker and Denzel Whitaker will have to outshine each other to earn the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture honor.
The Image Awards, which honors those who promote diversity in the arts, will give out awards in 44 categories, including literature and recording. The winners will be announced in a ceremony broadcast live on Fox on February 14 in Los Angeles. The list for the motion categories can be seen below and the complete list for all 44 categories can be read on naacpimageawards.net (PDF).
The 39th NAACP Image Awards Nominees for Motion Picture categories: