Los Angeles, CA (December 14, 2009) – The African-American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) has named “Precious” as the Best Picture of 2009.  Directed by Lee Daniels, the Lionsgate release captured a majority vote by the organization, which is comprised of African-American media professionals from across the nation.  Founded in 2003, AAFCA will present this year’s honors at its first live event tonight, Monday, December 14, 2009, at the historic Ebony Repertory Theatre in Los Angeles.

Morgan Freeman was selected as Best Actor 2009 for “Invictus.”  Nicole Beharie earned AAFCA recognition as Best Actress 2009 for “American Violet.”  With the first unanimous vote in an acting category in the organization’s history, Mo’Nique was selected Best Supporting Actress for “Precious.”  Anthony Mackie earned Best Supporting Actor recognition for his performance in “The Hurt Locker.”  Lee Daniels was named Best Director for “Precious,” with a tie for Best Screenplay between Ron Clements, Rob Edwards, John Musker for “The Princess & The Frog” and Geoffrey Fletcher for “Precious.”

“In 2009, the film community produced a dazzling array of performances from African-American talent both in front of and behind the camera,” states Gil Robertson IV, AAFCA Co-Founder.  “This year’s selections give a strong indication that the film community is becoming more committed to a wider range of stories that entertain and educate.”

AAFCA bestows the Special Achievement Award to Michael Jackson, whose seminal film “This Is It captured a lifetime of exemplary creative expression.

The organization’s Top Ten list of film honors includes “Up In The Air,” “The Hurt Locker” and “Good Hair.”  “The films selected for 2009 reflect a fascinating combination of work that both entertains and addresses themes and issues of cultural importance,” remarks AAFCA President, Wilson Morales, editor of
The African-American Film Critics Association’s Top Ten Films of 2009 are as follows in order of distinction:
1.         Precious
2.         The Princess and The Frog
3.         Up In The Air
4.         The Hurt Locker
5.         This Is It
6.         American Violet
7.         Goodbye Solo
8.         Medicine for Melancholy
9.         Good Hair
10.      Up

Best Actor                              Morgan Freeman, “Invictus”

Best Actress                          Nicole Beharie, “American Violet”

Best Supporting Actress     Mo’Nique, “Precious”

Best Supporting Actor         Anthony Mackie. “The Hurt Locker”

Best Director                         Lee Daniels, “Precious”

Best Screenplay (tie)          Geoffrey Fletcher, “Precious”

R. Clements, R. Edwards, J. Musker, “The Princess & The Frog”

Special Achievement         Michael Jackson

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