Denzel Washington Draws Big Guns for AFI Achievement Award Kudos

It was a night of surprises, as the AFI tribute to Denzel Washington started out with Beyoncé, who had not been announced, bounding out onto the stage — gasp — to present the night’s other prize, the Franklin J. Schaffner Award, to her video director Melina Matsoukas, who went on to direct Issa Rae’s “Insecure” and the upcoming movie “Queen & Slim,” collaborating with Lena Waithe. “Beyoncé taught me how to work, how to dream, and how to achieve,” she said. “And how to take control of your own narrative.”

Jennifer Hudson delivered a soaring rendition of “A Change is Gonna Come,” rousing the black-tie crowd to one of the night’s many standing ovations.

Kathleen Kennedy was revealed as the new chair of the AFI Board of Trustees, replacing Sir Howard Stringer after 19 years, who sent a farewell video. Robert A. Daly remains Chair of the AFI Board of Directors,
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