From Riz Ahmed to Lena Waithe, the 2017 Emmys Were History in the Making

Emmys 2017 Winners
Alberto E. Rodriguez & Kevin Winter/Getty
History was made at the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards with its diverse group of winners, including Riz Ahmed and Lena Waithe.

In recent years, the movie industry has been called out for its lack of diversity and equal representation on screen. Meanwhile, it appears TV has been listening the whole time, and the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards proved it with a night of historical wins for women and people of color.

Donald Glover picked up a gold statue for Best Director for a Comedy for his series Atlanta on FX. He is the first black director to win in this category. He also won for Best Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, an award that Jeffrey Tambor (Transparent) has claimed for the past two years. The only other time a black actor won in this category was Robert Guillaume in 1985 for Benson.

Lena Waithe, along with Master of None show creator Aziz Ansari, won for Best Writing for a Comedy Series for their “Thanksgiving” episode. Waithe’s win marks the first time an African-American woman was nominated and won in this category.

Riz Ahmed became the first male actor of South Asian descent to win an Emmy. He nabbed it for Best Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for his performance in HBO’s The Night Of.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus set her own record! She won Best Actress in a Comedy for her role on HBO’s Veep for the sixth consecutive year. Julia is now the winningest performer for a single role in Emmy history.

Sterling K. Brown took to the stage to accept his Emmy for Best Actor in Drama Series for NBC’s This Is Us. An African-American actor hasn’t won in this category since 1998.

The Handmaid’s Tale took home the Emmy for Best Drama Series. This marks the first time a streaming show took home the coveted award.