2019 Critics’ Choice Awards Highlights Sisterhood and Representation

The 2019 Critics’ Choice Awards highlighted female friendships and delivered a big win for inclusion. Sandra Oh jogged to the stage when her name was called as Best Actress in a Drama Series for Killing Eve. Akwafina and Jameela Jamil were waiting there to hand Sandra the trophy. What a great moment with three amazingly talented women! Thandie Netwon scooped up the Best Supporting Actress award in a Drama Series for her work on Westworld. Regina King won for Best Supporting Actress in If Beale Street Could Talk.

Crazy Rich Asians, the first blockbuster film since 1993’s Joy Luck Club to feature an all-Asian cast, won for Best Comedy—a possible entrée for an Oscar nomination. Sandra Oh couldn’t contain her excitement when the movie won, rushing over to embrace and congratulate the cast. It was obvious that the feelings of love and respect were mutual as they took selfies together.

In her acceptance speech, Crazy Rich Asians producer Nina Jacobsen said, “When I was coming up in the business, my bosses — white guys — told me that while every audience member can identify with a white male protagonist, white dudes can’t be counted on to identify with anyone who doesn’t look or live like they do. Representation is power, and our movie — like so many of those nominated today — reminds us that audiences are hungry to see that power redistributed.”

The Broadcast Film Critics Association acknowledged Claire Foy with the #SeeHer award for her portrayals of extraordinary women, including Queen Elizabeth in The Crown and Janet Armstrong in First Man. When talking about the woman who was married to Neil Armstrong, Claire said, “She lived her life with such bravery and resilience and determination and love, and I can’t tell you how many times during the making of the movie and in the press tour the people said to me, well, that part is normally the part of just the wife.” She went on to say “And there’s no such thing as ‘Just the wife’.” Claire left the stage hand in hand with presenter and last year’s #SeeHer recipient Viola Davis.

Black Panther scored three wins for Best Visual Effects, Best Costume Design (Ruth Carter), and Best Production Design (Hannah Beachler and Jay Hart). In other news from the ceremony, host Taye Diggs kicked the show off with a song and dance about diversity. “Let’s have a celebration about the representation of my brothers and my sisters in this year’s film presentation,” Diggs sang, while surrounded by backup dancers. He continued by saying “All underrepresented people of all genders and orientations played prominent roles both in front and behind the camera in many of this year’s biggest films, television and streaming series.”

Studies find that films starring women and people of color earn greater revenues, so it’s high time for Hollywood to feature casts that look like the audience!