Based on the novel by literary icon James Baldwin, the film follows the romance of two young African-Americans, Tish (Kiki Layne) and Fonny (Stephan James), who strengthen their bond through an unexpected pregnancy and are nearly torn asunder by a wrongful imprisonment.
King plays Sharon Rivers, mother to Tish, who is a fierce advocate for her daughter and fights valiantly to prove Fonny's innocence.
The 48-year-old actor was emotional as she walked up to the stage to receive her first Oscar award. She paid tribute to Baldwin's writing, which Jenkins' adopted.
"To be standing here representing one of the greatest artists of our time, James Baldwin -- it's a little surreal.
"James Baldwin birthed this baby and Barry, you nurtured her, you surrounded her with so much love and support, so it's appropriate for me to be standing here because I'm an example of what it looks like when support and love is poured into someone," she said in her speech.
The actor gave a tough fight to fellow nominees Emma Stone ( The Favourite ),
Rachel Weisz ( The Favourite ), Marina de Tavira ( Roma ), Regina King ( If Beale Street Could Talk ) to take home the award.
King, who brought her mom Gloria along to the 2019 Oscars, also thanked her for teaching her that God is always leaning in her direction.If Beale Street Could Talk is also nominated in the Best Original Score and Best Adapted Screenplay categories.
The Oscars, which have gone host-less this year, opened with a riveting performance by Queen and Adam Lambert.