Big wins for diversity at Emmys 2017


The 69th Annual Emmy Awards took place on Sunday, September 17 and there were big wins all around. From Julia Louis-Dreyfus breaking records to Donald Glover breaking down barriers, this year’s Emmys was one for the books.

This year was a year of Emmy firsts: Stephen Colbert hosted for the first time, Riz Ahmed became the first Muslim and the first South Asian to win an Emmy for acting and Lena Waithe won the Emmy for Writing for a Comedy Series as the first black woman nominated in the category. Waithe won the award alongside Aziz Ansari for writing the critically-acclaimed “Thanksgiving” episode of their Netflix show Master of None. The episode was semi-autobiographical as it mapped her character’s coming out story in a similar fashion to that of her own.

“The things that make us different, those are our superpowers,” Waithe said during her acceptance speech. “Everyday when you walk out the door, 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.”

This was a big year for Atlanta’s Donald Glover, who took home two of the four awards he was nominated for at his first ever Emmys ceremony. 2017 has been extremely busy for Glover who aside from executive producing, writing, directing, creating and starring in Atlanta, has also been working on his fourth studio album as Childish Gambino. He has also been on the sets of the upcoming Star Wars film and this summer’s blockbuster Spider-Man: Homecoming. Aside from being only the second black man to ever win the Emmy for Best Actor in a Comedy Series, Glover set the record for receiving the most nominations for any black performer and creator in a single year. Glover took his opportunity on stage to share his political beliefs.

“People in dystopian societies don’t realize they’re in dystopian societies,” Glover said in a backstage interview. “I just want people to be aware, that’s it. I think people are aware.”

One of the biggest winners of the night was Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who broke Candice Bergen’s record for winning the most Emmys (six) for playing the same character. Louis-Dreyfus also tied Cloris Leachman’s record for the most acting Emmys (eight). Veep, the show for which Louis-Dreyfus has won a majority of her awards, has announced that next year’s seventh season will be the show’s last.

“I don’t know what to say about it other than I’m sort of numb, I can’t believe it,” Louis-Dreyfus said in a backstage interview. “I’m incredibly honored and amazed this has happened to me, it’s all very baffling.”

The 2017 Emmys will go down as one of the most record-breaking ceremonies in the history of the awards.