Oprah Winfrey Set to Open Essence Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon

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Oprah Winfrey, left, and Ava Duvernay

Program presenters include David Oyelowo, Lupita N’yongo; John Legend and Common will perform.

Selma colleagues Oprah Winfrey, Ava Duvernay, David Oyelowo, John Legend and Common will be among the presenters and performers participating at the eighth annual Essence Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon. Celebrating the theme “The Power of Our Presence,” the Feb. 19 event will take place at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills.

Winfrey will open the program, during which five awards will be presented. Those presenters include Lupita N’yongo, the Vanguard Award to the cast of Orange Is the New Black (Adrienne C. Moore, Danielle Brooks, Laverne Cox, Lorraine Toussaint, Samira Wiley, Uzo Aduba and Vicky Jeudy); Selma director Duvernay, the Visionary Award to costume designer Ruth E. Carter; Selma lead Oyelowo, the Lincoln Breakthrough of the Year Award to actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw; and Cuba Gooding Jr., the Fierce & Fearless Award to actress/director Regina King.

Director/screenwriter Gina Prince Bythewood will present the award to this year’s film contest winner. And Legend and Common will perform their current Academy Award-nominated song “Glory” from the Selma soundtrack.

Presented by Lincoln, the Essence Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon follows on the heels of Essence’s annual Black Women in Music Grammy Week salute honoring singer/songwriter Jill Scott. This year also marks the 45th anniversary of Essence magazine.