Essence Lists the 75 Most Powerful Black Women in Hollywood

Essence Magazine's Hot Hollywood 2014 List Featuring Cheryl Boone Isaacs, President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts

Essence Magazine’s Hot Hollywood 2014 List Featuring Cheryl Boone Isaacs, President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts

“There’s a myth that Black women don’t have power in Hollywood. We’ve found 75 who do (and that’s not even all of them),” says Essence Magazine , which will soon host its 7th Annual Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon .

Oscar-nominated actress Lupita Nyong’o , Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences President Cheryl Boone Isaacs and award-winning director/writer Ava DuVernay will be presented with awards by peers Sidney Poitier, Oprah Winfrey, Alfre Woodard, Kerry Washington, David Oyelowo, Spike Lee, Tonya Lewis Lee and Danai Gurira .

Not only will the ceremony honor the top Black women in the film industry this year, but also the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, paying tribute to champions of the Civil Rights Movement including Nichelle Nichols, Jim Brown, Denise Nicholas and Clarence Williams III , and more.

A few special guests will also be in attendance, including Kelly Rowland, Angela Bassett, Regina King, Brandy Norwood, Gayle King , and Loretta Devine .

The event will live stream on on February 27th at 1:30 p.m. EST.

Check out their 2014 Hollywood Hot List below and learn more about the women in the March 2014 issue of Essence.


1. Cheryl Boone Isaacs, President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Black Women in Hollywood Honoree


2. Ava DuVernay, Filmmaker, Black Women in Hollywood Honoree


3. Lupita Nyong’o, Actress, Black Women in Hollywood Honoree

Game Changers

4. Shonda Rhimes, Creator, Executive producer and head writer, Scandal

5. Judy Smith, Co-creator and co-executive producer, Scandal

6. Kerry Washington, Lead actress, Scandal

7. Khandi Alexander, Guest star, Scandal

8. Vanessa Morrison, President, Fox Animation

9. Oprah Winfrey, Chairwoman and CEO, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network

10. Issa Rae, Creator, writer, actress, The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl


11. Samira Wiley, Actress, Orange is the New Black

12. Danielle Brooks, Actress, Orange is the New Black

13. Uzo Aduba, Actress, Orange is the New Black

14. Laverne Cox, Actress, Orange is the New Black

15. Nicole Beharie, Actress, Fox’s Sleepy Hollow

16. Naomie Harris, Actress, Mandela: A Long Walk to Freedom

The Negotiators

17. Nina Shaw, Partner, Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka, Finkelstein & Lezcano

18. Bianca Levin, Partner, Gang, Tyre, Ramer & Brown

19. Lorrie Bartlett, Partner and co-head of talent, ICM Partners

20. Andrea Nelson Meigs, Talent Agent, ICM Partners

21. Dana Sims, Talent Agent, ICM Partners

22. April King, Talent Agent, ICM Partners

Queens of TV

23. Wendy Williams, Host, The Wendy Williams Show

24. Aisha Tyler, Co-host, CBS’ The Talk ; host, CW’s Whose Line Is It Anyway? ; and actress, FX’s Archer

25. Mara Brock Akil, Creator and executive producer, Being Mary Jane

26. Gabrielle Union, Lead actress, Being Mary Jane

27. Debra Lee, Chairman and CEO, BET Networks

28. Loretha Jones, President, Original Programming, BET Networks

29. Angela Bassett, Actress, Black Nativity and FX’s American Horror Story: Coven

30. Sharon Liggins, Board of governors, Academy of Television Arts & Sciences

31. Pauline Fischer, Vice-President, Content Acquisition, Netflix

32. Janine Sherman Barrois, Executive producer, CBS’ Criminal Minds

33. Yvette Lee Bowser, Showrunner, TV Land’s The Soul Man

34. Channing Dungey, Executive vice-president, Drama Development, Movies & Miniseries, ABC Entertainment Group

35. Queen Latifah, Host, The Queen Latifah Show

36. J ada Pinkett Smith , Executive Producer , The Queen Latifah Show

37. Endyia Kinney-Sterns, Vice-President, Programming and Development, OWN

38. Traci Lynn Blackwell, Vice-president, Current Programs, The CW Network

39. Tamar Braxton, Host

40. Loni Love. Host

41. Tamera Mowry-Housley, Host

42. Aisha Muharrar, Producer, NBC’s Parks and Recreation

Screen Gems

43. Nicole Bernard, Senior vice-president, Fox Audience Strategy, 21st Century Fox

44. Jacqueline Lyanga, Director, American Film Institute Fest

45. Sharen Davis, Costume Designer, Get On Up

46. Nikkole Denson-Randolph, Vice-president, Special & Alternative Content, AMC Theatres

47. Gina Prince-Bythewood, Writer and director, Blackbird

48. Talitha Watkins, Vice-president, Multicultural Marketing, Universal Pictures

49. Tabitha Jackson, Director, The Sundance Institutes Documentary Film Program

50. Gabrielle Glore, Executive producer and head of programming, Urbanworld

51. Effie T. Brown, Producer, Dear White People

52. Stephanie Allain, Executive producer, director of the Los Angeles Film Festival, Dear White People

53. Lena Waithe, Producer, Dear White People

54. Terilyn A. Shropshire, Film Editor

55. Ruth E. Carter, Costume designer, Lee Daniels’ The Butler

56. Tracy “Twinkie” Byrd, Casting director, Fruitvale Station

57. Sheila C. Johnson, Executive producer, Lee Daniels’ The Butler

58. Nija Kuykendall, Vice-president, Production, Warner Bros. Pictures

59. Zola Mashariki, Senior vice-president, Production, Fox Searchlight

60. Cassandra Butcher, Vice-president, National Publicity, Fox Searchlight

2014’s Watchlist

61. Tonya Lewis Lee, Screenwriter, The Watsons Go to Birmingham

62. Mellody Hobson, Chairman, Dreamworks Animation

63. Amma Asante, Director, Belle

64. Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Lead Actress, Belle

65. Maya Rudolph, Host and executive producer, NBC’s The Maya Rudolph Variety Show

66. Ashley Holland, TV and digital agent, Creative Artist Agency

67. Emayatzy Corinealdi, Actress, Addicted

68. Mo’Nique, Actress and executive producer, Blackbird

69. Regina Hall. Actress, About Last Night and Think Like a Man Too

70. Quvenzhane Wallis, Lead Actress, Annie

71. Regina King, Director and producer, Let the Church Say Amen

72. Shasheer Zamata, Featured player, NBC’s Saturday Night Live

73. Keke Palmer, Actress, Animal

74. Alexandra Metz, Actress, ABC’s Once Upon a Time

75. Nia Long, Actress, The Single Moms Club