American Black Film Festival Honors to Return In 2023 Celebrating Excellence In Hollywood, Deon Cole to Host

ABFF Ventures LLC today announced American Black Film Festival (ABFF) Honors will be held in Los Angeles on Sunday, March 5, with two-time Emmy-nominated writer, actor and comedian Deon Cole returning as host.

ABFF’s annual award season gala honors Black artists who have made significant contributions to the motion picture and television industry, as well as those who champion diversity and inclusion in Hollywood.

The tributes will be presented in multiple categories, including Hollywood Legacy Award, Excellence in the Arts Award, Entertainment Icon Award, Rising Star Award and Industry Leadership Award. In addition, ABFF Honors presents competitive awards for Movie of the Year and Documentary of the Year. The nominees and winners for both categories are determined by the more than 100,000 alumni of the film festival.

“This has been a phenomenal year for Black artists, and we are thrilled to celebrate their many successes, milestones and breakout moments. I’m equally excited to have comedic genius Deon Cole hosting this inspiring ceremony,” said ABFF President Nicole Friday.

“There is no better place to feel uplifted, encouraged and appreciated than in your own community. ABFF Honors provides that unique platform.”

Widely known as a regular on the ABC hit series black-ish, Deon Cole’s career features an extensive body of work in television, writing and comedy. On the acting front, he currently can be seen in Jeymes Samuel’s The Harder They Fall. He recently wrapped a role in Kenya Barris and Jonah Hill’s You People. Next up, he joins the cast of The Color Purple and will star in the drama series Average Joe. From the stand-up comedy stage, Deon recently released his one-hour special Charleen’s Boy. In 2019, his hilarious original comedy special Deon Cole: Cole Hearted ran on Netflix following the success of his appearance in The Standups. His earlier work includes his one-hour special Deon Cole: Cole Blooded Seminar and his stand-up documentary Workin’ it Out.

ABFF Honors’ celebrated list of former award recipients include, Denzel WashingtonAva DuVernayRegina KingTiffany HaddishRyan CooglerDon CheadleWill PackerQueen LatifahLena WaitheTerrence HowardF. Gary GrayBilly Dee WilliamsIssa RaeOmari HardwickLouis Gossett, Jr., the late Diahann Carroll and the cast of classic films and television shows Martin, The WireHollywood Shuffle and Love Jones.

ABFF Honors is executive produced by Nicole and Jeff Friday (ABFF Ventures) in association with Rikki Hughes (Magic Lemonade) and de Passe Jones Entertainment.

The 2023 ABFF Honors sponsors and partners to date are Cadillac (Presenting) and Sony Pictures Entertainment (Official). For more information about ABFF Honors visit