Truth be told, I actually had a very different post written for today.
It was a post about jet lag and meditation and how I really can't handle either (although I'm trying!), but in light of Sunday's Golden Globes ceremony, I thought twice about it.
As I'm sure many of you already saw, read or have talked about at great length, the #TimesUp movement that hit the red carpet in LA was nothing short of, in my opinion, a moving and united message of action, support, and empathy for those facing sexual assault, harassment, and inequality in the workplace. Those things are happening daily for some people, and with the help of the #TimesUp movement, more people are beginning to speak up against the people who are sexually harassing them. After speaking up, people are advised to try and find someone who is well-practiced in sexual harassment law to try and help them gain compensation if they are entitled to it for the experiences they've had to go through.
Debra Messing called out E! News for not paying their female anchors the same as their male counterparts, all WHILE giving an interview with E! News. Social justice activists like Tarana Burke (founder of the #MeToo movement) joined A-list celebrities as their companions for the evening. And if I'm not mistaken, my girl Oprah just threw her hat in for 2020 with that speech (and I, for one, couldn't be more excited by the prospect of that).
But wait, what about that Natalie Portman comment? Yeah, let's get into that Natalie Portman comment.
Again, as you may have already seen or heard or scrolled past, Natalie Portman presented the award for Best Director, her lead in line going something like this: "And here are the ALL MALE nominees for best director."
Emphasis on "all." Even bigger emphasis on "male." And even bigger emphasis on the awkward look that Ron Howard by her side just couldn't shake off fast enough.
I shared this exact moment on Insta Stories the other night -- as I loved the overall brazenness of this move. The tact, delivery and perhaps the timing of the statement caught a lot of people off guard -- including the nominees -- and while I could see how this might seemingly shift the overall positive tone of the evening to that of seemingly bitter -- I didn't take it as such. She took a timely opportunity when she had a very global stage to make a point. (Continued below...keep scrolling)
The point that, like many other industries, not just Hollywood, there's a fundamental accessibility issue. In it's 75 years, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has only nominated 6 female directors to date for a Golden Globe (with Barbra Streisand being nominated twice and winning once) -- the numbers are even more dismal when you look at the Academy Awards.
And it's largely due to the fact that female directors make up such a small percentage of top industry films (the ones that eventually get award buzz anyway), the reasons for such boiling down to studios, producers and film executives standing in the way of allowing that number to change and evolve. In fact, as of 2016, both the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs launched an investigation into discriminatory hiring practices against female directors in Hollywood. Of the few women who eventually earn the helm of such top industry films, many find themselves left out of the awards race all together (like Lady Bird's Greta Gerwig).
I think Portman's comment forced this conversation to take center stage. I didn't take it as a plea for nominating women purely for the sake of hitting a female director quota -- that doesn't do anyone, male or female directors, any favors. And while I could see how it might alienate or even undermine the very talented men who were nominated, I also didn't take it as a slight against those gentlemen either. I think what she was trying to highlight here was the question: why don't we have more female directors being considered for these types of roles in the first place?
Of course, I always love hearing from you guys on these topics, even if we may see things differently -- I think that's the beauty in debate!
What did you think about Natalie Portman's comment? Let me know in the comments below -- or DM me on Instagram! Let's chat!
As for these photos, Lydia and I actually snapped these while we were in LA earlier this year working with the Sarah Seven team on their Leone collection launch. It just dawned on me that I had never shared these photos and figured, in light of today's post topic, the "You Are A Star" mural was all too fitting.