Women Ruled Awards Shows in 2013, And Here Is Proof
There's no question that Hollywood, as well as the world in general, has a long way to go before gender equality is established. Female actors, writers, and directors typically play second fiddle to their male counterparts, and that's when they're lucky — disturbingly often, women are not just disdained by the industry, but overlooked completely. The percentage of females in behind-the-scenes film and television positions is astonishingly low compared to the amount of men in the field, and while the stats are improving each year, the amount of change — 18 percent of all directors, producers, writers, cinematographers, and editors in 2012 are female, only 1 percent higher than in 1998 — is not exactly encouraging.
Still, there is one place that women are thriving in Hollywood: award shows. 2013 saw female actors, comedians and more take over some of the industry's biggest nights, continually stealing the show and proving their worth. Whether it was Amy Poehler and Tina Fey hosting the Golden Globes or Taylor Swift making viewers cry at the CMAs, women ruled award shows this year. A summary:
The People's Choice Awards: The first award show of the year was hosted by a woman, The Big Bang Theory's Kaley Cuoco. While Cuoco's flat jokes proved she should probably stick to her day job, the show did see many triumphs for females, including a humanitarian award for Sandra Bullock and a Favorite Movie Actress win for Jennifer Lawrence (the first of many similar awards this year for the Silver Linings Playbook actress.)
The Golden Globes: This year's Golden Globes was all about the women. From the female-directed Brave winning Best Animated Film, to Lena Dunham winning for Girls, to Jodie Foster's sort-of-but-not-quite coming out speech, to, of course, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler's legendary job as hosts, females took over the 2013 Globes and made it all kinds of awesome. Best female FTW joke: after Bill Clinton introduced Lincoln, Poehler had a Leslie Knope-esque freakout and exclaimed, "that was Hillary Clinton's husband!"
The Screen Actors Guild Awards: In Jennifer Lawrence's acceptance speech for Best Leading Actress, she revealed an awesome bit of trivia that made us love her even more than we already did: apparently, Lawrence earned her SAG card by appearing in a promo for My Super Sweet 16. Thanks, Internet!
The NAACP Image Awards: At the awards show honoring the achievements of African-Americans in Hollywood, Kerry Washington picked up not one, but three awards: leading actress for Scandal, supporting actress for Django Unchained, and the President's Award, given to honor a star's work in public service. Seriously, is there anything this woman can't do?!
The Grammys: There's no denying the power of Taylor Swift's circus-inspired "We Are Never Getting Back Together" or Kelly Clarkson's gorgeous rendition of "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman," but the highlight of the night belonged to Rihanna, who blew audiences away with her stunning performance of "Stay." Her powerful, emotional vocals reminded viewers that Rihanna is far more than just the headlines and the controversy — she's one of the best singers working today.
The Indie Spirit Awards: While accepting her award for Best Supporting Actress, The Sessions star Helen Hunt gave a moving tribute to the makers of the film for creating a sweet, realistic movie about sex and sexuality, adding that she hopes her 9-year-old daughter "stands in the light of the spirit of this movie for all her days." A great message from a great actress.
The Oscars: Sure, Seth MacFarlane might've brought down the mood with a piece of "humor" called "We Saw Your Boobs," but Hollywood's biggest night belonged to the ladies. Jennifer Lawrence solidified her title as America's Dream BFF by ordering McDonalds on the red carpet, tripping up the stairs (and brushing it off) on her way to accept her Oscar, and, after the show, giving the funniest, most candid post-Oscar interview in forever. Also that night: legend Shirley Bassey wowed with "Goldfinger," Anne Hathaway emotionally addressed prostitution and feminism in her acceptance speech, and Adele brought down the house with her Oscar-winning "Skyfall."
The MTV Movie Awards: The show was female-dominated from the very beginning, when (most of) the cast of Pitch Perfect appeared and sang on stage. Sure, it could've been better — no Pitch Perfect reunion is complete without Anna Kendrick — but it set the female-centric tone for the rest of the show. Breakthrough Performance winner Rebel Wilson hosted the show, which also honored Perks of Being a Wallflower star Emma Watson with a Trailblazer Award.
In her inspiring speech, the always-classy Watson gave her fans some important wisdom: "Becoming yourself is really hard, and confusing, and it's a process... it's often not cool to be the person who puts themselves out there... but I've found that ultimately, if you truly pour your heart into what you believe in, even if it makes you vulnerable, amazing things can and will happen." Well said.
The Tony Awards: During Broadway's biggest night, both top directing prizes were awarded to women for only the second time in the show's history. Also that night: Cyndi Lauper became the first solo woman to win a Tony for her score for Kinky Boots, and 88-year-old Cicely Tyson won her first ever Tony for her lead actress role in The Trip to Bountiful.
The Teen Choice Awards: Happily, many women picked up prizes at the Teen Choice Awards, but the real female winner of the night was Lea Michele, who made her first televised appearance since the death of her boyfriend, Glee star Cory Monteith. Accepting the title of Choice TV Actress, Michele tearfully dedicated the award to Monteith, telling the crowd that "for all of you out there that loved and admired Cory as much as I did, I promise that with your love, we're going to get through this together." Not that anyone doubted it before, but the speech, made less than a month after Monteith's passing, showed Michele's immense bravery and poise.
MTV Video Music Awards: Oh, the VMAs. There were plenty of buzzworthy moments from this year's award show, but the most memorable of them all was clearly Miley Cyrus' twerk-filled, foam finger-wearing performance of "We Can't Stop/Blurred Lines." Whether you loved it or hated it, you can't deny that we're still talking about it three months later; the girl knows what she's doing.
Ellen DeGeneres Announced as 2014 Oscar Host: On Aug. 2, it was announced that the beloved comedian would host next year's Academy Awards. DeGeneres, who hosted the Oscars for the first time in 2007 to rave reviews, is only the second solo female (after Whoopi Goldberg) to host the Academy Awards in its 86-year history. We can't wait to see what she has in store.
The Emmy Awards: Neil Patrick Harris may have hosted the show, but, like usual, it was award-show-regulars Fey and Poehler who stole the night with their one-liners ("take your pants off! Twerk it!") and general hilarity (crawling up the stage a la Jennifer Lawrence). Other great moments: Supporting Comedy Actress winner Merritt Wever giving the best and shortest speech in Emmy history, Anna Gunn proving haters wrong with her well-deserved win for Breaking Bad, and Diahann Carroll movingly passing the torch to Kerry Washington.
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler Announced as Hosts of 2014 and 2015 Golden Globes: On Oct. 15, the world received the best news ever, when it was revealed that Fey and Poehler would host the Golden Globes for the next two years. If their plans for the future shows are anything as the jokes they delivered during their 2013 turn as Globes hosts, viewers should be in for two hilarious nights. Is it too soon to start counting the days?
The CMA Awards: Miranda Lambert, Kacey Musgraves and other female country stars had reason to celebrate at the CMA Awards, but the biggest winner of the night was Taylor Swift. The 23-year-old received the show's second-ever Pinnacle Award, which honored her incredible career. Even the most passionate haters have to admit that Swift, whose unstoppable work ethic and incomparable self-discipline allows her to sell out stadiums and destroy records with ease, deserved the praise. And if the tribute to Swift, which involved on-stage kind words from some of country's biggest stars and video contributions from people including Julia Roberts and Mick Jagger, wasn't enough to win over non-fans, then Swift's emotional, lovely acceptance speech should've done the trick.
Congrats to all women on an awesome 2013, award show edition. Next year's award season is only a few weeks away — let's make 2014 even better.