Donald Glover Makes History at 2017 Emmys as First Black Star to Win Comedy Series Directing

There have been past black winners of an Emmy for directing, but never for a comedy

By Corinne Heller Sep 18, 2017 1:13 AMTags
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Donald Glover won his first Emmy at the 2017 Emmys Sunday and made history in the process.

With his award for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series for his show Atlanta, he is the first black star to win in that category.

"Man. Yo, first I want to thank the great algorithm that put us all here," Glover said in his acceptance speech. "I want to thank my parents who are in the audience. This is nuts."

He also thanked his brother and the writers of the FX show and Tokyo-born filmmaker Hiro Murai, who has worked with Glover on music videos. The actor is also known by his music stage name Childish Gambino.

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"He taught me everything about directing," Glover said.. He had the eye for this show first and we sat down and he is just amazing. I really want to give this to Hiro and say, I love you and thank you for being my best friend and making this with me and I just love everybody out here for letting me be up here so thank you, thank you all."

There have previously been three black directors who won Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series, all in the '90s: Thomas Carter, who won twice for Equal Justice, Paris Barclay, who won twice for NYPD Blue, and Eric Laneuville, who won for I'll Fly Away.

Glover also breaks a four-year streak of female directors taking home the award for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series.

He was also nominated for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for his part of Earnest "Earn" Marks on the FX show and lost to John Lithgow for The Crown.

Glover has been acting onscreen since the late '90s. His breakout role came in 2009, when he began playing Troy Barnes on NBC's Community. He later scored roles in movies such as The Martian and Spider-Man: Homecoming and voices Simba in the new semi live-action reboot of The Lion King, which is set for release in 2019.

Don't miss E! News tonight at 7 and 11 p.m. and tune in to the Fashion Police 2017 Emmys Special, with guest co-host Erika Jayne, at 8 p.m., only on E!