2023 NAACP Image Awards Ratings Climb to 2.9 Million Viewers

(L-R) Ryan Coogler, Angela Bassett, Tenoch Huerta and Dominique Thorne accept the Outstanding Motion Picture award for "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" onstage during the 54th NAACP Image Awards at Pasadena Civic Auditorium on February 25, 2023 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Leon Bennett/Getty Images for BET)

The 54th NAACP Image Awards drew lots of eyeballs this year, with 2.9 million viewers watching the broadcast across 13 Paramount Global networks, including BET, BET HER, CMT, Comedy Central, LOGO, MTV, MTV2, Paramount Network, POP TV, Smithsonian, TV Land, VH1, and CBS.

Thanks to the simulcast, the ratings for the show climbed 72 percent from last year, according to Nielsen figures.

The broadcast also generated 10.4 million social interactions across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube — up 1,658 percent from 2022 — which saw 592,000 social interactions.

Related Story: NAACP Image Awards: Angela Bassett Takes Top Trophy – Complete Winners List

The 2023 awards, held on Feb. 25 in Pasadena, Calif, included a live audience for the first time in three years since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

Angela Bassett was the night’s big winner, taking home the Entertainer of the Year award. She also picked up awards for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series for 9-1-1 and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for her performance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

The trophy for Outstanding Motion Picture went to Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, and Abbott Elementary won Outstanding Comedy Series.

The night’s honors also included the NAACP President’s Award, which went to Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade for their work supporting LGBTQIA+ youth.

Rapper, actress, producer, author, and entrepreneur Queen Latifah, hosted the show, which was produced by Hudlin Entertainment and The Gurin Company along. Executive Producers included Reggie Hudlin and Phil Gurin, alongside co-executive producer Byron Phillips, and producer Robin Reinhardt. Connie Orlando and Jamal Noisette served as executive producers for BET.

Each year the awards recognize outstanding achievements by people of color across more than 80 competitive categories.

Leading up to the telecast, the NAACP held non-televised virtual ceremonies from Feb 20-24, and honored work for directing, TV hosting, music, podcasting, voice-over work, short-form programs, and literary work.

An encore of the 54th NAACP Image Awards airs Thursday, March 2 at 9 pm ET/ PT on BET.