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HBO's "The Wire" New York Premiere -September 7, 2006

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HBO’s hit series The Wire has long been heralded as the “greatest tv show of all time” and over the weekend the sentiment was solidified by the American Black Film Festival.

On Sunday (Feb. 23) the American Black Film Festival awarded the acclaimed 2000s series “The Wire” with the Classic Television award at its honors gala. The ABFF celebrated the HBO Baltimore crime drama, created by David Simon, for being widely regarded as “one of the greatest television shows of all time,” a press release stated.

During the ceremony, the cast members from “The Wire’ accepted the award on stage in Beverly Hills, California. Wendell Pierce, who portrayed detective William “Bunk” Moreland in the series, delivered an acceptance speech, alongside other cast members, including Lance Reddick, Andre Royo, Jamie Hector, Sonja Sohn and Michael K. Williams.

“This is a great honor for us… the many years we did ‘The Wire’ we never got awards,” Pierce said. “We’re breaking records tonight, getting our first one. Twenty years ago we gathered in Baltimore to start filming this television series that we were hoping would be our best work… but what we couldn’t [have] seen, was the fact that it captured the zeitgeist of the time and changed American television history.”

Pierce also noted that what makes the series a classic is that “it speaks to our humanity then when it was filmed [and] now it’s still relevant and years after we are gone, it will still speak to our humanity because it was authentic and truthful.”

During the hit shows six seasons, from 2002 to 2008, critics widely accused the Emmys of snubbing “The Wire” by not granting the show a single award and only giving it two noms for writing. Despite the show’s massive success the show has only won a total of four awards overall including the Peabody Award, Writer’s Guild of America Award for Television, and a Director’s Guild America Award for Outstanding Directing – Drama Series.