On Wednesday February 11, a group of Hollywood’s most talented actors, producers and industry leaders gathered at the Taglyan Complex to celebrate the African American Film Critics Association’s (AAFCA) 7th annual awards show.

The awards ceremony featured a plethora of stars such as Teyonnah Parris, Terrance J., Courtney B. Vance, Louis Gossett, Jr., Tommy Davidson, and Creed director Ryan Coogler.

Honorees of the night included New York Times film critic Manohla Dargis, Codeblack Entertainment CEO Jeff Clanagan, and director John Singleton, who received the AAFCA’s Legacy award.

“John Singleton in his brief time here on earth is larger than life. He allows us to see ourselves and shows the world who we are, and our potential,” said actor Courtney B. Vance, who presented Singleton with his award.

This year marks the 7th anniversary of the AAFCA’s awards and many attendees of the night have watched the ceremony grow from a small to large-scale event, a major coup for African Americans in the industry.

“Two years ago just a few people came, now it’s an explosion. A pleasant, revolutionary and classy explosion of Black artists,” said veteran actor Louis Gossett Jr. “I’m so proud seeing these talented people. It’s time, it’s inevitable.”

And still, AAFCA president Gil Robertson insists that the organization’s initial mission remains the same.

“(We are) Continuing our mission to provide a safe haven of support to black journalists entering entertainment journalism and filmmakers of all colors & backgrounds as they create noteworthy cinematic works,” Robertson said.

The night honored exceptional films and television shows such as Straight Outta Compton, Creed, Dope, How to Get Away with Murder, Survivor’s Remorse, Black-ish and more.

“Our members found an interesting theme in many of the films released this year, giving a voice to communities who have generally been underserved and marginalized in society,” Robertson said. “With movies like Straight Outta Compton, Chi-Raq, 3 1/2 Minutes and Dope, filmmakers brought to life many storylines that are a reflection of what’s happening in our world today, including the #BlackLivesMatter movement.”