'Precious' leads Image Awards

'Tyler Perry's House of Pain,' 'Gifted Hands' multiple winners

"Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" collected six awards Friday night at the 41st NAACP Image Awards in Los Angeles. Oscar hopefuls Gabourey Sidibe and Mo'Nique took home best actress and best supporting actress prizes, respectively, while director Lee Daniels and screenwriter Geoffrey Fletcher were also singled out for their Oscar-nominated work. "Precious," a film chronicling an abused, illiterate teen's steps towards independence and self-confidence, completed its Image Awards run with prizes for both outstanding motion picture and outstanding independent motion picture.
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Television honors were led by TBS' "Tyler Perry's House of Payne," which was named outstanding comedy series and garnered acting prizes for lead actress Cassi Davis and supporting players Lance Gross and Keshia Knight Pulliam. The TNT original movie "Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story" won multiple honors including outstanding TV movie, mini-series or dramatic special and acting honors for leads Cuba Gooding Jr. and Kimberly Elise.

The evening's other winners included Chris Rock for his documentary "Good Hair"; "Grey's Anatomy's" Shonda Rhimes; singers Maxwell, Mary J. Blige and newcomer Keri Hilson; and actors Daryl "Chill" Mitchell ("Brothers"), Hill Harper ("CSI: NY), Jada Pinkett Smith ("HawthoRNe"), Delroy Lindo ("Law & Order: Special Victims Unit") and S. Epatha Merkerson ("Law & Order"). Mo'Nique took home an additional Image Award for "The Mo'Nique Show," which was named outstanding talk show.

Acceptance speeches varied from the long-winded (the orchestra attempted to cut off Lee Daniels twice), to the emotional (a crying Sidibe), to the touching (paralyzed "Brothers" star Mitchell said, "As long as you all got legs, I'm going to always walk"). Comedian Rock got one of the night's biggest laughs when he told the audience, "I made this movie just for black people. I've seen a lot of documentaries, and I said I wanted the blackest movie of all time."
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The NAACP Image Awards celebrate the accomplishments of people of color working in the fields of literature, music, television and film. Special honors were presented this year to Tyler Perry, Wyclef Jean, music exec Clarence Avant and activist Van Jones.
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