Interesting moment it is, as two black American film stars took the early acting honours at the 89th Oscars on Sunday, which began with a salvo of jokes by host Jimmy Kimmel targeting US President Donald Trump.
However, Mahershala Ali won the best-supporting-actor prize for his turn as a drug dealer with a heart in coming of age drama “Moonlight” while Viola Davis took the supporting actress statuette for her work in the family drama “Fences.”
READ MORE: The Complete List of 2017 Oscar winners
Notwithstanding, this year’s nominees have reflected a push by the Academy to reward diversity after the #OscarsSoWhite controversy of the past two years that prompted calls for a boycott of the annual bash.
Ali was a first-time nominee along with “Moonlight” co-star Naomie Harris, while Davis and her co-star Denzel Washington are both old hands, with 11 nominations between them and including Davis’s triumph- three wins.