MTV Movie & TV Awards: Lena Waithe Accepts Trailblazer Award, Cites Others Who Paved the Way

In her speech, she gave a special shout-out to the subjects of the documentary 'Paris Is Burning,' which follows drag queens living in New York: "They strutted through a brick wall so we wouldn't have to."

Lena Waithe was honored with the Trailblazer Award at the MTV Movie & TV Awards Monday night. The award recognizes content creators who introduce new and unique voices within the entertainment industry.

Upon accepting the award from Common, who said Waithe was "a visionary," she said although she was so "elated" when she found out she was receiving the award, she really wanted to dedicate it to other visionaries. She gave a special shout-out to the subjects of the groundbreaking 1990 documentary Paris Is Burning, which follows drag queens — including Willi Ninja, Dorian Corey and more — living in New York. "A lot of people featured in this film are no longer with us, but their legacies will never die," she said. "They strutted through a brick wall so we wouldn't have to."

Waithe made history when she was named the first woman of color to win the best writing in a comedy series award at the Emmys for her work on Master of None. She recently starred in Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One and is the creator, writer and producer of Showtime’s The Chi.

She is also producing and writing the upcoming show Twenties, for TBS.