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"Rage manifesting in the female characters in these movies," Holly Hunter said of this year's crop of awards season frontrunners

By Karen Mizoguchi
January 21, 2018 07:39 PM
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24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - Arrivals
Credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty

Holly Hunter is all for strong, female leads both in and out of Hollywood.

The Big Sick actress, 59, explained why she’s a fierce supporter of women, specifically actresses portraying compelling characters on screen, especially in 2018.

“This is the year of the woman. There’s defiance in the selection of these movies selected tonight,” Hunter told E! on the red carpet at the Screen Actors Guild Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday. She’s nominated for best supporting actress for her performance in The Big Sick.

Be sure to check out PEOPLE’s full SAG Awards coverage to get the latest news on Hollywood’s big night and watch PEOPLE, Entertainment Weekly and TNT’s official live red carpet show on Twitter or your favorite streaming devices.

“Rage manifesting in the female characters in these movies,” she added, alluding to the this year’s crop of awards season frontrunners featuring female-driven films such as Lady Bird, I, Tonya, The Shape of Water and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

Hunter’s comment also reverberates with the Time’s Up movement currently making waves after a strong showing at the Golden Globes.

RELATED VIDEO: SAG Awards 2018: Get Out, The Big Sick and Big Little Lies Score Nominations

The movement, launched on New Year’s Day, helps fight sexual harassment and assault in Hollywood and beyond, has raised over $16 million for a legal defense fund, and anyone can donate.

Movement starters Meryl Streep, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Aniston and Shonda Rhimes each donated $500,000, while Taylor Swift and Oprah Winfreychimed in with $100,000 each. Natalie Portman, Emma Stone, Jessica Chastain and Cate Blanchett continued the donations with $50,000 each.

To donate to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund, which will provide subsidized legal support to women and men in all industries who have experienced sexual harassment, assault, or abuse in the workplace, visit its GoFundMe page. Learn more about Time’s Up, an organization of women in entertainment combating sexual harassment and inequality, on its website.

Time’s Up began meeting in early October after a wave of allegations was spurred by a slew of stories alleging sexual misconduct by Harvey Weinstein.

Weinstein, 65, has been accused of sexual misconduct by over 50 women since The New York Times and The New Yorker documented decades of alleged sexual misconduct and sexual assault involving a number of women in detailed articles in October.

In a statement to PEOPLE, Weinstein’s attorneys, Blair Berk and Benjamin Brafman, said: “Mr. Weinstein has never at any time committed an act of sexual assault, and it is wrong and irresponsible to conflate claims of impolitic behavior or consensual sexual contact later regretted, with an untrue claim of criminal conduct. There is a wide canyon between mere allegation and truth, and we are confident that any sober calculation of the facts will prove no legal wrongdoing occurred.”

The 24th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards are broadcast live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on both TNT and TBS starting at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday and catch PEOPLE, Entertainment Weekly and TNT’s live red carpet show starting at 5:30 p.m. on PeopleTV — found on your favorite streaming devices.