Emma Watson wins first gender-neutral acting award at MTV TV and Movie Awards

Beauty And The Beast star beat male and female peers

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Emma Watson won the first gender-neutral accolade at the MTV TV and Movie Awards on Sunday.

The British screen star was named Best Big Screen Actor for her performance as Belle in the live action Disney movie Beauty And The Beast.

The 27-year-old beat Daniel Kaluuya, Hailee Steinfeld, Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy and Taraji P. Henson to the coveted accolade.

2017 MTV Movie And TV Awards - Roaming Show

Accepting the honour on stage at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, Watson said: "The first acting award... that doesn't separate nominees based on their sex says something about how we perceive the human experience.

"MTV's move to create a genderless award for acting will mean something different to everyone.

"But to me it indicates that acting is about the ability to put yourself in someone else's shoes and that doesn't need to be separated into two different categories.

"Empathy and the ability to use your imagination should have no limits. This is very meaningful to me."