LOS ANGELES -- Kerry Washington was a triple threat at the NAACP Image Awards.

The star of ABC's "Scandal" picked up a trio of trophies at the 44th annual ceremony: outstanding actress in a drama series for "Scandal," supporting actress in a motion picture for "Django Unchained" and the President's Award, which is given in recognition of special achievement and exceptional public service.

"This award does not belong to me," said Washington, who plays a slave separated from her husband in "Django Unchained," as she picked up her first trophy of the evening for her role in the film directed by Quentin Tarantino. "It belongs to our ancestors. We shot this film on a slave plantation, and they were with us along every step of the way."

Washington, who plays crisis management consultant Olivia Pope on "Scandal," serves on President Barack Obama's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities.

Don Cheedle was awarded the outstanding actor in a comedy series trophy for his role as a slick management consultant in Showtime's "House of Lies."

"This doesn't belong just to me, but I am taking it home tonight," joked Cheedle.

A few winners weren't present at the Shrine Auditorium to pick up their trophies, including Denzel Washington for outstanding actor in a motion picture for "Flight," Viola Davis for outstanding actress in a motion picture for "Won't Back Down" and Omar Epps for supporting actor in a drama series for Fox's "House."

"Red Tails," the drama about the Tuskegee Airmen, was honored as outstanding motion picture.

"Look! I beat Quentin Tarantino," beamed "Red Tails" executive producer George Lucas as he accepted the award.

LL Cool J, who was honored as outstanding actor in a drama series for CBS' "NCIS: Los Angeles," dedicated his trophy to fellow nominee Michael Clarke Duncan, "The Green Mile" and "The Finder" actor who died last year.

"I wish his family well," said LL. "Let's give it up for him."

Gladys Knight sang during the in memoriam segment, but the beginning of her performance wasn't heard on the live NBC broadcast because of a technical glitch.

Sidney Poitier presented Harry Belafonte with the Spingarn Award, which honors outstanding achievement by an African American. His honor was followed by a serenade from Wyclef Jean and Common.

Other winners at the ceremony hosted by talk show host Steve Harvey included Loretta Devine as supporting actress in a drama series for "Grey's Anatomy," Cassi Davis as outstanding actress in a comedy series and Lance Gross as outstanding supporting actor in a comedy series for TBS' "Tyler Perry's House of Payne."

The Image Awards are presented annually by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and the group's members select the winners.

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  • 2004

    HOLLYWOOD - MARCH 6: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 35th Annual NAACP Image Awards at the Universal Amphitheatre March 6, 2004 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

  • 2004

    HOLLYWOOD, CA - AUGUST 9: Actor Kerry Washington arrives at the premiere of 'Mean Creek' held at the Arclight Cinemas on August 9, 2004 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

  • 2004

    BEVERLY HILLS, CA - OCTOBER 17: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 11th Annual Diversity Awards at The Beverly Hills Hotel on October 17, 2004 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Stephen Shugerman/Getty Images)

  • 2004

    NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 15: Kerry Washington arrives at the newly opened Oscar de la Renta Boutique on November 15, 2004 in New York City. (Photo by Brad Barket/ Getty Images)

  • 2004

    NEW YORK - DECEMBER 9: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the premiere of 'The Sea Inside' at the UA Union Square Theater December 9, 2004 in New York City. (Photo by Scott Gries/Getty Images)

  • 2005

    HOLLYWOOD - APRIL 5: Actress Kerry Washington attends the premiere of Showtime's 'Reefer Madness' at the Regent Showcase Cinemas April 5, 2005 in Hollywood, California. The musical comedy is adapted from the legendary 1938 anti-marijuana propaganda film of the same name. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

  • 2005

    LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 9: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 'Lucky Magazine Cover Girl Party' at the Chateau Marmont on August 9, 2005 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Mark Mainz/Getty Images)

  • 2005

    BEVERLY HILLS, CA - OCTOBER 24: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the 9th Annual Hollywood Film Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on October 24, 2005 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

  • 2006

    LONDON - OCTOBER 18: Kerry Washington wearing a Marchesa dress arrives at the UK Premiere of 'The Last King Of Scotland' during the opening gala of The Times BFI London Film Festival, at the Odeon Leicester Square on October 19, 2006 in London, England. The film kicks off the annual film festival, which runs from October 19 to November 2. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

  • 2006

    HOLLYWOOD - NOVEMBER 07: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the Premiere Lounge after party for 'The Dead Girl' during AFI FEST 2006 presented by Audi held at Sideways Restaurant & Lounge on November 7, 2006 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

  • 2007

    NEW YORK - APRIL 25: Actress Kerry Washington attends the opening night premiere of 'SOS' at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival on April 25, 2007 in New York City. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival)

  • 2007

    NEW YORK - MAY 1: Kerry Washington attends the opening night of the New York City Ballet's 'Romeo Juliet' on May 1, 2007 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images)

  • 2007

    NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 27: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 17th Annual Gotham Awards presented by IFP (Independent Feature Project) at Steiner Studios November 27, 2007 in the Brooklyn Borough of New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images)

  • 2007

    NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 19: Actor Kerry Washington attends the premiere of 'Trade' at the United Nations on September 19, 2007 in New York City. (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images)

  • 2007

    LOS ANGELES - MARCH 7: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the premiere of Fox Searchlight Picture's 'I Think I Love My Wife' at the ArcLight Cinemas on March 7, 2007 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

  • 2008

    LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 31: Actress Kerry Washington attends the CNN, LA Times, POLITICO Democratic Debate at the Kodak Theatre on January 31, 2008 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stephen Shugerman/Getty Images for Turner) 15480_0133.jpg

  • 2008

    NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 14: Actress Kerry Washington attends V-Day's V to the Tenth: NYC - Kickoff to New Orleans at Hammerstein Ballroom on February 14, 2008 in New York City. (Photo by Scott Wintrow/Getty Images For V-Day)

  • 2008

    CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 23: Actress Kerry Washington arrives for the Synecdoche, New York premiere at the Palais des Festivals during the 61st International Cannes Film Festival on May 23, 2008 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

  • 2008

    CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 24: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the 'Palermo Shooting' premiere at the Palais des Festivals during the 61st International Cannes Film Festival on May 24, 2008 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

  • 2009

    BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 19: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 2nd Annual ESSENCE Black Women In Hollywood Luncheon at the Beverly Hills Hotel on February 19, 2009 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

  • 2009

    CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 24: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 'Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky' Premiere at the Grand Theatre Lumiere during the 62nd Annual Cannes Film Festival on May 24, 2009 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Francois Durand/Getty Images)

  • 2009

    SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 26: Actress Kerry Washington poses during a photo session at the Hotel Maria Crsitina to promote 'Mother and Child' during the 57th San Sebastian Film Festival on September 26, 2009 in San Sebastian, Spain. (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)

  • 2009

    NEW YORK - OCTOBER 05: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 2009 National Arts Awards at Cipriani 42nd Street on October 5, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images)

  • 2009

    NEW YORK - OCTOBER 15: Actress Kerry Washington attends Keep A Child Alive�s 6th Annual Black Ball at Hammerstein Ballroom on October 15, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)

  • 2009

    NEW YORK - DECEMBER 06: Actress Kerry Washington attends the after party for the Broadway opening of 'Race' at Redeye Grill on December 6, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

  • 2010

    NEW YORK - MAY 03: Actress Kerry Washington attends the Costume Institute Gala Benefit to celebrate the opening of the 'American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity' exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 3, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)

  • 2010

    BEVERLY HILLS, CA - OCTOBER 18: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at ELLE's 17th Annual Women in Hollywood Tribute at The Four Seasons Hotel on October 18, 2010 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

  • 2010

    NEW YORK - OCTOBER 25: Kerry Washington attends the premiere of 'For Colored Girls' at Ziegfeld Theatre on October 25, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)

  • 2011

    NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 10: Actress Kerry Washington attends the 2010 New York Film Critics Circle Awards at Crimson on January 10, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)

  • 2011

    BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 24: Actress Kerry Washington attends the Fourth Annual ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon at the Beverly Hills Hotel on February 24, 2011 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

  • 2011

    SANTA MONICA, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the 2011 Film Independent Spirit Awards at Santa Monica Beach on February 26, 2011 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

  • 2011

    HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 04: (EDITORS NOTE: For Editorial Use Only. NO ARCHIVE) Actress Kerry Washington attends Tyler Perry's First Annual Rise Above Celebration at Boulevard3 on March 4, 2011 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images For Tyler Perry Studios)

  • 2011

    LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 26: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the BET Awards '11 held at the Shrine Auditorium on June 26, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

  • 2011

    HOLLYWOOD, CA - AUGUST 14: Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the 2011 VH1 Do Something Awards at the Hollywood Palladium on August 14, 2011 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

  • 2011

    NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 24: Actress Kerry Washington attends an evening with Ralph Lauren hosted by Oprah Winfrey and presented at Lincoln Center on October 24, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Ralph Lauren)

  • 2011

    NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 03: Kerry Washington attends the 8th annual Keep A Child Alive Black Ball at the Hammerstein Ballroom on November 3, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

  • 2011

    NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 07: Kerry Washington attends Glamour's 2011 Women of the Year Awards on November 7, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Glamour Magazine)

  • 2011

    LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 17:Actress Kerry Washington arrives at the 16th Annual GQ 'Men Of The Year' Party at Chateau Marmont on November 17, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

  • 2012

    PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 10: Actress Kerry Washington arrives to the Disney ABC Television Group's 'TCA Winter Press Tour' on January 10, 2012 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

  • 2012

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