Beyonce, ''Soul Food'' lead NAACP noms. Two films from overseas join movie contenders that star African-Americans

By Gary Susman
January 08, 2004 at 05:00 AM EST

Like your coach used to tell you, your toughest competition is yourself. That’s especially true if you’re a member of OutKast, since the rap duo is competing against itself in two categories for the 35th annual NAACP Image Awards, whose nominees were announced Wednesday. Honoring achievements by people of color in music, TV, movies, and literature, the Image Awards included six nominations for OutKast, including Outstanding Duo or Group, Outstanding Album (”Speakerboxxx/The Love Below”), and Outstanding Single and Video (”Hey Ya!” and ”The Way You Move” are nominated in both categories).

Beyoncé was the most-nominated individual, up for four musical awards (Outstanding Female Artist, Outstanding New Artist, and Outstanding Music Video and Outstanding Song for “Crazy in Love”), as well as a movie nomination for Outstanding Actress (”The Fighting Temptations”). The other two Outstanding Song nominees are Luther Vandross’ ”Dance With My Father” and Alicia Keys’ ”You Don’t Know My Name.” Keys’ ”The Diary of Alicia Keys,” Mary J. Blige’s ”Love & Life,” R. Kelly’s ”Chocolate Factory,” and Vandross’ ”Dance With My Father” join OutKast’s ”Speakerboxxx” in the Outstanding Album category.

The film list contained two surprising entries, both foreign movies about non-black people of color. ”Bend It Like Beckham” and ”Whale Rider” joined ”Bad Boys II,” ”Deliver Us From Eva,” and ”Fighting Temptations” among Outstanding Motion Picture contenders, and ”Whale Rider” star Keisha Castle-Hughes made the Outstanding Actress List. ”The Matrix Revolutions” picked up three acting nominations, for Laurence Fishburne, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Nona Gaye.

In the TV categories, Showtime’s ”Soul Food” led with seven nominations, including Outstanding Drama and six acting citations, for Malinda Williams, Nicole Ari Parker, Vanessa Williams, Boris Kodjoe, Darrin Dewitt Henson, and Terri J. Vaughn. Other Outstanding Drama nominees were ”24,” ”Boston Public,” ”CSI: Miami,” and ”The Wire.” Outstanding Comedy nominees were ”The Bernie Mac Show,” ”Girlfriends,” ”Half & Half,” ”My Wife and Kids,” and ”Whoopi.” Curiously ignored was the WB network (home of ”All About the Andersons,” ”Like Family,” and ”Steve Harvey’s Big Time”), as well as UPN’s ”All of Us” and ”Eve.” The NAACP Image Awards will be handed out March 6, in a ceremony that will air on Fox on March 11.