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Tracee Ellis Ross receives Black Women in Hollywood honour amid illness

Actress Tracee Ellis Ross was afraid she would not collect her Black Women in Hollywood prize on Thursday (25Feb16) because she was recovering from laryngitis.
The Black-ish star, daughter of Diana Ross, was presented with the Fierce and Fearless accolade by her sister Rhonda and teen star Zendaya Coleman at Essence magazine’s ninth annual awards luncheon for her achievement in the entertainment industry.
She told guests she “wasn’t supposed to be here” because she had been sick for the past week, but finally decided “she had to be there” to collect her honour despite her illness, and she even got dressed during the car journey so she could make it the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles in time.
“I’m unclear if what I’m wearing is see-through. If it is, I’m sorry,” she added, according to the Associated Press.
TV producer Shonda Rhimes presented the Legend Award to veteran actress/dancer Debbie Allen. She spoke of the lack of diversity at the Academy Awards throughout the years, not just in 2016, when the #OscarsSoWhite campaign came into full force.
Allen said, “I’ve always worked to a purpose bigger than myself… I wanted to replace Shirley Temple when I was little… I saw the Oscars when I was a kid and wanted to see someone on there that was my complexion. You have to believe in things.”
Oprah Winfrey also made comments on diversity as she opened the show, saying, “It’s a beautiful thing that we have the good sense to do this for ourselves… We all represent what’s possible. This is a divine moment to reflect and revel in each other’s achievements. And Essence has had the good sense to do this for nine years.”
The show airs on Winfrey’s network OWN on Saturday (27Feb16).

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