Seven programs that have leveraged the power of television to inspire social change will receive awards at the 11th annual Television Academy Honors, to be held May 31 at NeueHouse Hollywood. Actress-producer-activist Dana Delany will host for the 10th consecutive year.
The 2018 honorees include Andi Mack, Daughters of Destiny, Forbidden: Undocumented & Queer in Rural America, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, LA 92, One Day at a Time and 13 Reasons Why, selected from what the Academy called a record number of submissions.
The Television Academy Honors celebrates programming across numerous platforms and genres that address the complex challenges and important social issues facing society in a compelling and impactful way. Showrunners and producers are honored for channeling the power of television to explore these issues via captivating and thoughtful storytelling that advances positive change.
“It’s been a gift to host Television Academy Honors for the past 10 years. Every year I learn something new and am inspired by the work that is recognized,” said Delany. “With all the places to watch TV now, we have a wealth of human stories to tell. This year’s honorees are very special.”
“Our dynamic television landscape is a catalyst for raising awareness of relevant issues around the globe,” said Television Academy Chairman and CEO Hayma Washington. “We are proud to be part of an industry that spreads understanding, uncovers truth, encourages compassion and shines a light on darkness.”
Howard Meltzer, CSA, Governor for the Academy’s Casting Peer Group, chaired this year’s Television Academy Honors selection committee, with Mitch Waldow serving as vice-chair. Honorees represent a diverse spectrum of important issues challenging our world, including sexual harassment, LGBTQ prejudice and acceptance, veterans’ healthcare, teen mental health and suicide, racial discrimination, immigrant rights, and social justice.
Here are the recipients of the 11th annual Television Academy Honors:
Produced by Horizon Productions with Go Dog Go and MM Productions
In this comedic story, 13-year-old Andi Mack learns her older sister, Bex, is actually her mother, a revelation that sends Andi on an uncharted course of self-discovery. Her best friends Cyrus and Buffy and her crush, Jonah Beck, are also figuring out their places in the world; and they lean on each other to navigate the emotional roller coaster of middle school. Andi Mack presents stories and characters that are relevant to kids’ lives and reflect the real world while helping them realize they are not alone in their journeys of self-discovery. (Disney Channel)
Daughters of Destiny
A Cause & Affect Media Production
This four-part documentary chronicles the lives of five girls from the “untouchable” caste at a unique boarding school in India. Over the course of seven years, the girls’ stories explore fate, free will, human potential and the universal common longing for opportunity, purpose and meaning. The series also delves into India’s urgent issues of education, equity, social justice, gender roles, adolescence, identity, social discrimination, poverty alleviation, human rights, leadership, citizenry and community empowerment. (Netflix)
Forbidden: Undocumented & Queer in Rural America
Produced by Pony Pictures and Sisters Unite Productions
Moises Serrano fell in love with a country that refused to recognize his full humanity, both as an undocumented immigrant and as a gay man. An illustration of the intersection of queer and immigrant issues, Forbidden: Undocumented & Queer in Rural America relates directly to the 11 million undocumented immigrants currently living in the U.S. and to LGBTQ individuals fighting for equality and civil rights. It chronicles Serrano’s work as an activist and explores the American Dream with inspired conversations about LGBTQ rights, immigrant rights, DACA and the Dream Act. (Logo)
Full Frontal with Samantha Bee
Produced by Turner Entertainment Networks Inc. with Jax Media and Randy & Pam’s Quality Entertainment
In a male-dominated late-night landscape, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee has set itself apart by covering topics not typically addressed in this format, particularly women’s issues. With a female host at the helm and a staff dedicated to speaking out against social injustices, Full Frontal found itself in the unique position to deliver commentary on sexual harassment and the #MeToo movement in a truthful and passionate way. (TBS)
National Geographic Documentary Films Presents a Lightbox Production
Academy Award- and Emmy-winning filmmakers Dan Lindsay and TJ Martin reexamined the civil unrest following the 1992 Rodney King trial. Through evocative news footage, radio reports, police files and home videos, LA 92 offers a fresh perspective on a pivotal moment and further inspired a new, empathetic conversation about racial oppression, police brutality and socioeconomic inequality. (National Geographic)
One Day at a Time (Produced by Sony Pictures Television)
This comedy tells the story of a newly single military veteran, Penelope Alvarez, and her multi-generational Cuban-American family. With heart and much empathy, this series explores several pertinent social issues, including immigration and undocumented residents, veteran healthcare, sexuality and coming out, and LGBTQ prejudice and acceptance. (Netflix)
13 Reasons Why
Produced by Paramount Television