Cicely Tyson, last on Broadway in the 2015 revival of The Gin Game, wil be among those presented with an Honorary Award at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ tenth annual Governors Awards November 18.
The Board of Governors also voted to present Honorary Awards to publicist Marvin Levy and composer Lalo Schifrin, as well as the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award to producers Kathleen Kennedy and Frank Marshall.
“Choosing the honorees for its awards each year is the happiest of all the Board of Governors’ work. And this year, its selection of five iconic artists was made with universal acclaim by the Academy’s 54 spirited governors.” said Academy President John Bailey in a statement.
Raised in Harlem, Tyson began her career as a model and a theatre actor, appearing both on Broadway and Off-Broadway. After playing small roles in feature films and television, she was cast as Portia in The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter in 1968. Four years later, she received an Oscar nomination for her leading performance in Sounder. Her other notable film credits include The River Niger, Fried Green Tomatoes, Diary of a Mad Black Woman, The Help, Alex Cross, and Last Flag Flying.
Tyson made her Broadway debut as an understudy in 1959's Jolly's Progress, going on to perform in such shows as The Cool World, Carry Me Back to Morningside Heights, and The Corn Is Green. After a 30-year hiatus from the New York stage, Tyson portrayed Carrie Watts in Horton Foote’s The Trip to Bountiful, for which she received the 2013 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play.
She is perhaps best known for her double Emmy Award-winning performance as Jane in The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman (Best Lead Actress in a Drama as well as an unprecedented Special Emmy for Actress of the Year). She received her third Emmy for Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All.