The Most Empowering, Feminist Moments at the Oscars
JIMMY KIMMEL'S OPENING MONOLOGUE
Though Kimmel's monologue brought the funny, it also talked about the reckoning that has descended on Hollywood over the past year — with a little comedy thrown in, naturally. “What happened with Harvey and what’s happening all over is long overdue,” Kimmel said, reminding the audience that Harvey Weinstein had been expelled from the Academy. Of course, it wasn't without any humor: “If we can work together to stop sexual harassment in the workplace, if we can do that, women will only have to deal with that every other place they go.”
GRETA GERWIG & LAURA DERN PRESENT TOGETHER
"Congratulations," Dern whole-heartedly told Gerwig — who this year became the fifth woman in Oscars history to be nominated for Best Director — as they held hands to present the award for Best Documentary Feature.
TARAJI P. HENSON INTRODUCES MARY J. BLIGE
Blige made history this year as the first person to be nominated in an acting category and Best Song in the same year — and Henson was sure to tout her accomplishments when she introduced Blige to the stage.
ASHLEY JUDD, SALMA HAYEK AND ANNABELLA SCIORRA SPEAK OUT ABOUT TIME'S UP
In one of the evening's most poignant moments, Judd, Sciorra and Hayek — all of whom accused disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment and assault — spoke about the reckoning that is happening in Hollywood (and around the world) as well as the Time's Up movement. “The changes we are witnessing are being driven by the powerful sound of new voices, of different voices, of our voices," Judd said. "Joining together in a mighty chorus that is finally saying time’s up.”
THAT EMOTIONAL MONTAGE
Following Judd, Hayek and Sciorra's appearance, a moving montage took the screen (and the stage), focusing on the importance of diversity and representation in film. "This is what white men feel all the time," Kumail Nanjiani said of the joy of seeing powerful, complex characters who look like you on screen. But change has arrived, and it's still to come, director Lee Daniels said: "We're here, and we're not going anywhere." Also making powerful appearances? Directors Ava DuVernay and Greta Gerwig, Hayek and Oscar winner (and Weinstein accuser) Mira Sorvino.
SANDRA BULLOCK PRESENTS FOR BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Bullock started off her presentation of the Oscar for Best Cinematography with some comedy, but ended with an important proclamation. "Here are the four men, and the one trailblazing woman who are nominated for achievement in cinematography," she said, shouting out Rachel Morrison, the first woman to be nominated in the category.
EMMA STONE PRESENTS BEST DIRECTOR
"These four men, and Greta Gerwig" was how Stone described this year's nominees for Best Director, which included the Lady Bird director — the fifth woman to ever be nominated in the category.
FRANCES MCDORMAND ASKS EVERY FEMALE NOMINEE TO STAND
McDormand brought one of the most powerful moments throughout the show during her acceptance speech for Best Actress. She asked each female nominee, in every category, to stand. (Adding, "Meryl, if you do it, every one else will," to which Streep happily obliged.) Once they were standing, she said: "Look around. Because we all have stories to tell, and projects to finance." McDormand also told people to get in touch with them — later this week, after they've had some time to catch up on sleep — and get those projects rolling.