2006 Black Movie Awards - A Celebration of Black Cinema: Past, Present & Future 2006 - 2007 (TV Show)
Throughout her five-plus decade career on stage and screen, Cicely Tyson was known for her dedication to truthfully exploring the broad spectrum of the African-American experience. Tyson was at the forefront of a shift away from one-dimensional, negative screen stereotypes of black women with her starring role in "Sounder" (1972), which was groundbreaking in its portrayal of the dignity, strength and courage of a Depression-era African-American family. The acclaimed film and Tyson's Oscar-nominated leading role opened the doors for a whole new era of black storytelling, and Tyson came to represent this strong and wise image of African-American women with revered performances in "The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman" (CBS, 1973) and "Roots" (ABC, 1977). Television movies offered the most opportunities for this actress with a mission, and she went on to recreate renowned moments and figures in African-American heritage in "King" (1978), "A Woman Called Moses" (1978), and "Heat Wave" (1990), among others. Whether playing an educated professional, the backbone of a challenged family, or a woman moved by an extraordinary sense of purpose, Tyson continually raised the standards of African-American imagery on film.