Why Vanity Fair’s star-studded Oscar photo shows #BlackExcellence at its best

We've never seen a photo like this before.

Lena Waithe Oscar group photo
Photo by Mark Seliger for Vanity Fair

Black celebs showed up and showed out at this year’s Oscars and the significance of history-making year in film was not lost on Vanity Fair.

Their photographer, Mark Seliger, captured several stunning photos of beautiful black folks like Kerry Washington, Chadwick Boseman, and Zoe Kravitz at their portrait studio on Sunday night. Lena Waithe posted one on Instagram that features  Ava DuVernay, Donald Glover, Regina Hall, Sarah Jones, Rashidah Jones, Gabrielle Union, Angela Bassett, Dr. Ivara Esege, Chuck Lightning, Chimmamanda Ngozi, Marianne jean Baptiste, Mark Bradford  Tracee Ellis-Ross, Shonda Rhimes, DeRay Mckesson, and Janelle Monae is giving us major #squadgoals.

Love it, Lena Waithe!

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She also posted a sweet pic of herself with some famous pals along with the caption, “I get by with a little help from my friends.”

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This year’s Academy Awards had #blackfolkmagic sprinkled left and right.  Mary J. Blige was the first person ever to be nominated for an acting award as well as best original song for the same film, Mudbound.

Jordan Peele made history as the first black person to win best original screenplay for Get Out and Kobe Bryant became the first NBA player to win an Oscar for his animated short, Dear Basketball.

#BlackExcellence was in full effect on Oscar night outside the winner’s circle as well. Maya Rudolph and Tiffany Haddish stole the show with their hilarious banter and Haddish’s 3-peat of her infamous Alexander McQueen gown.

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The Oscars was just another example of big moves being made by black people in Hollywood this year. The incredible success of Black Panther continues as the world gears up for the release of another masterpiece. Ava DuVernay‘s A Wrinkle In Time hits theaters on Friday and promises to spark a new wave of #BlackGirlMagic with its powerful message and diverse cast that includes Oprah Winfrey, Storm Reid, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Mindy Kaling, among others.