Taraji P. Henson opened this year’s BET Awards in style! The “Empire” actress took the stage at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles and wowed with a memorable opening monologue.

After a high-energy opening performance featuring Kirk Franklin and Lil Baby, Henson took the stage in a stylish gold ensemble.

“It’s 2021, and we are celebrating the year of the Black woman,” Henson declared with a smile.  “Celebrating Black women isn’t a fad or a trend it’s a forever mood.”

“There is more than enough room for all of us to thrive, because can’t nobody be me like me and can’t nobody be you like you,” she continued, before having roses handed out to a number of women in the room, including Zendaya, Jazmine Sullivan, Isa Rae and “Queen” Maxine Waters.

She also teased that she’d be coming out throughout the night dressed as “some of my favourite women” and hinted that she’d be honouring some female Black icons over the course of the show.

ET’s Kevin Frazier spoke with Henson on the red carpet at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, before the show kicked off, and she teased her “incredible entrance” that she said would “knock your socks off.”

“I’m also gonna be dressed like five women that I really love and admire. Some past, some present,” Henson hinted.

She also opened up about how it feels to be hosting, and the actress gushed, “It makes me feel amazing.”

“I’m just so proud! BET is where we own our industry… we own this to celebrate each other, uplift each other, in an industry that doesn’t do that for us so many times,” she shared. “So I’m glad we just have each other. You know what we always say, “We all we got, but guess what, we all we need.'”

For more on this year’s BET Awards, check out the video below. See the complete winners list here!


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