Ava Duvernay, the producer-director behind such films as Selma and 13th and the OWN drama series Queen Sugar, will receive the Visionary Award from the Producers Guild at the 29th annual PGA Awards on January 20 at the Beverly Hilton.
The award recognizes film, TV or new media producers for their unique or uplifting contributions to our culture through inspiring storytelling or performance, the guild said.
DuVernay is being recognized for her work in creating topical films and TV shows focusing on important social issues. They include 13th, the riveting, Oscar-nominated documentary about race in America, for which she earned two Emmys, and the OWN drama series Queen Sugar.
DuVernay is a fierce advocate for underrepresented filmmakers. In 2010, she founded ARRAY, a non-profit collective dedicated to the distribution and amplification of films by people of color and women filmmakers. DuVernay also has broken down barriers throughout her Hollywood career: She was the first African-American female director to have a film nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards with 2014’s Selma as well as the first to earn the Best Director Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, in 2012. Her upcoming Disney film A Wrinkle in Time makes her the first African-American woman to direct a film budgeted over $100 million.
“The emergence of Ava DuVernay as a producer and filmmaker has been one of the great developments of the past several years,” said Producers Guild Awards Chairs Donald De Line and Amy Pascal. “Whether in scripted features, television or documentaries, her unique voice, skill and passion have inspired countless audiences throughout our country and around the world. She is, by any standard, a visionary storyteller, and we are excited to be honoring her as such in 2018.”