Female celebrities at the 75th annual Golden Globes Sunday night delivered a dynamic message to Hollywood: We’re mad as hell, and we’re not going to take it anymore. Almost all of the major A-listers wore black to the awards show ceremony to show solidarity with victims of sexual harassment and gender inequity.
“It was so important to wear black,” Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke said on the red carpet at the HBO Golden Globes afterparty. “I stand with all of my sisters and brothers here, to draw a black line between what was and what is going to be.”
Clarke addressed the “female-empowered” vibe during the telecast.
“The energy was incredible tonight. I have been to a few of these events, but this was unlike anything I have ever experienced,” she said.
“Let’s face it, the environment when you go to these awards shows, everyone is nervous and scared. You are literally getting judged on the red carpet, and then when you get in the ballroom. That’s all that happens.
“But then you come here, and you realize, ‘I’m not being judged.’ We are looking out instead of looking in. And we are celebrating and embracing. We are all together in this, men and women. It was beautiful.”
Clarke added: “I think the people at home could feel that this is a change we are trying to make. That can only be good.”
Part of the quest of anti–sexual harassment movement Time's Up, which urged the awards’ all-black fashion look, has been to raise awareness of sexual harassment occurring outside of the entertainment industry, especially among working-class women.
Actress Maggie Gyllenhaal, who was nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a TV Series, The Deuce, said she liked how everyone in the Time’s Up movement is collaborating.
“Often, we are up against each other,” she said. “And there’s an air of competition that gets created in this industry, and probably many others. It was amazing to feel that fall away.”
Gyllenhaal acknowledged she was “really uncomfortable” at first. “We were all in this room in someone’s apartment in New York working together, to make something meaningful and create some change. That’s so great.”
She said she's uncertain about what will happen next.
“As a feminist who believes in due process — though due process hasn’t served women very well in the past — I hope that if we can shift the balance of power, that maybe due process will start to serve us,” Gyllenhaal said. “I hope all of this energy, anger and pain will lead to something being codified that we can rely on to serve and protect us.”
Highlighting the evening was Oprah Winfrey, the first African-American woman to be honored with the Cecil B. DeMille Award. During her speech, the veteran talk show host mentioned Recy Taylor, an African-American woman who was gang-raped in 1944 in Alabama by six white men who were never indicted. Taylor died Dec. 28.
“She lived as we all have lived, too many years in a culture broken by brutally powerful men,” Winfrey said. “For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dare speak the truth to the power of those men. But their time is up.”
Actress Geena Davis was encouraged by how much awareness is being generated for the new anti–sexual harassment initiatives, such as the “See Her” movement, which seeks to end gender bias in advertising and media.
“The ‘See Her’ movement has gotten a lot of attention, which is fantastic. From Seth Myers' opening dialogue to Oprah’s speech,” Davis said. “I am one of the founding members of Time’s Up; we want to see real change happen. I think there is so much passion behind it.”
Kimberly Hebert Gregory, known for her roles on ABC’s Kevin (Probably) Saves the World and HBO’s Vice Principals, appreciates seeing the Time’s Up movement get recognition.
“I think #MeToo was the rallying cry, and Time’s Up is a much more substantial, practical way to try to address inequities among the genders.”
Gregory said she is “really excited” to see women who have “privilege, power and money” get involved, helping those being harassed and lacking the legal funds, resources and support to fight back.
“Just like with the Obama campaign, I would love to see women ongoingly give small donations, too.”