It’s safe to say the 75th Golden Globe Awards was a departure from its previous 74 iterations — from stars reaffirming that #TimesUp on workplace sexual assault and harassment to proving stories written by women about women are definitely award-worthy. Here are 12 ways this was a very different, female-powered awards ceremony.
1. There was a new kind of dress code
The red carpet was transformed into an inky black sea this year, as stars wore black to protest sexual assault and harassment, and show their support for Time’s Up.
2. Women-centred stories cleaned up
The Handmaid’s Tale won two awards, while Big Little Lies won four awards, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri won best drama motion picture, Ladybird took best motion picture in the musical or comedy category, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel won for best musical or comedy TV series, while Allison Janney won best supporting actress for her role in I, Tonya.
3. Viola Davis used her red-carpet moment to send a powerful message to survivors
“There’s no prerequisites to worthiness. You’re born being worthy. And I think that’s a message that a lot of women need to hear: The women who are still in silence because of trauma, because of shame due to assault, they need to understand it’s not their fault,” Davis said in an interview with Al Roker.
4. Elisabeth Moss dedicated her award to Margaret Atwood
After winning the award for best actress for her role in the Handmaid’s Tale, Moss dedicated it to the Canadian author of the book that inspired the show, and recited a quote from Atwood’s novel: “We no longer live in the blank, white spaces at the edge of print. We no longer live in the gaps in the stories.”
5. Handmaid’s Tale show-runner Bruce Miller bestowed a new title on Atwood
While accepting the award for best drama series, Miller acknowledged the author first, addressing her as “Maraget Atwood, who is the mother of us all.”
6. Sterling K. Brown paid his respect to the (American) Queen
The This is Us actor opened his acceptance speech for best actor simply by saying: “Oprah!” He also made history by being the first African-American man to win in the category.
7. Oprah made it clear why she needs to run for president
She used her acceptance speech for the Cecil B. de Mille Award for outstanding contributions to entertainment by giving a shout-out to the press in these “complicated times,” providing the crowd with a history lesson on survivor Recy Taylor, and by warning abusers that “their time is up.” She also left us with reason to be hopeful: “A new day is on the horizon. And when that day finally dawns it will be because of a lot many magnificent women … and some pretty phenomenal men fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say ‘me too’ again.”
8. Debra Messing called out E! for not paying male and female hosts equally
In an (awkward) interview with E!’s Giuliana Rancic, the Will & Grace actor said she was “shocked” that E! didn’t believe in pay equity, referring to former E! host Catt Sadler leaving the network after learning her co-host made nearly double what she did.
9. The stars brought activists as their dates
Michelle Williams brought Tarana Burke, the woman behind the #MeToo movement, Meryl Streep was accompanied by MacArthur genius and executive director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance Ai-jen Poo, and Emma Stone was lucky enough to have tennis star and gay rights advocate Billie Jean King by her side.
10. Presenter Natalie Portman boldly pointed out all the nominees for best director were men
Before reading out the names along with her co-presenter Ron Howard, Portman slid in: “And here are the all-male nominees.”
11. Frances McDormand was a sheer delight
First, McDormand made clear she wasn’t there to please the male gaze, wearing a sack dress and no makeup. Next, as her Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri co-star Sam Rockwell called her “a force of nature” in his acceptance speech, a camera panned for her reaction and McDormand was not having it, repeatedly waving it away. Finally, when she won for best actress in a drama film, offered to buy tequila at the bar for her category mates and celebrating them as “part of tectonic shift in this industry’s power structure.”
12. Barbra Streisand presented the final award … but not before chastising the organizers
The legend took advantage of her captive audience to mention she’s the only woman who has won in the best director category, pointing out it’s been 34 years since then. “Folks, time’s up,” she said.
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