Guy mansplains Natalie Portman's comment on female directors and accidentally proves her point
The Golden Globes had some big wins over the weekend – and I'm not just talking about the awards. It was a monumental night for women, who came together to stand up against sexual harassment and assault, which – thanks to what the Harvey Weinstein scandal uncovered – proves to be a huge issue in the film industry.
One of the best #girlpower moments of the evening was Natalie Portman throwing shade at award organisers for failing to nominate a single female director for the category of Best Director. She was standing on stage with co-presenter Ron Howard, and after he said, "We’re honoured to be here to present the award for best director," the actress stepped to the mic and coolly said, "And here are the all-male nominees."
It was a smooth jab which implied the bias behind the highly coveted award, especially since there was a lot of really amazing work created by female directors in the past year.
Wonder Woman directed by Patty Jenkins became the highest-grossing superhero origin movie ever. Greta Gerwig's film Lady Bird was nominated for Best Motion Picture (Musical or Comedy), Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Screenplay – yet incredibly she wasn't considered for Best Director. Dee Rees' film Mudbound was critically acclaimed, and the powerful movie Detroit was directed by Kathryn Bigelow, neither of whom got a nomination either.
So Portman's bold remark was understandably met with a lot of figurative whooping and "you go girl!"s.
But of course, there were also the overly-sensitive louts who didn't even try to understand what Portman was saying. And that means there were people trying to mansplain her point too. Like this dude:
Unlucky for him, he didn't realise that his point – which was meant to shut Portman down – actually proved her point perfectly.
And so D)
And yet, certain individuals got even more fired up about people shutting down the guy, and started tweeting more absurdity.
It's all about "timing"? Well, yes – wasn't the Hollywood event which had a particular gender equality flavour this year the perfect timing? Especially since only seven women have even been nominated for Best Director in the 75 years the awards have existed, and just one of them has ever won – Barbara Streisand back in 1984.
I'm sorry but I believe no-one got past reading "that time of the month".
Well boo hoo – at least they had a chance to even be in the spotlight. Plus, the director who actually took home the award, Guillermo del Toro (with The Shape of Water) was fully supportive of Portman's jab, telling IndieWire: "I think it was great! She should say exactly what she feels. There is phenomenal work being done by female directors." He added that Mudbound, Lady Bird and Wonder Woman were all "terrific" films.
For anyone who's still confused about what to think about Portman's snarky comment, I think a pretty valid perspective comes from this Twitter user:
And as Steven Spielberg, who was one of the other nominees up for the award, told Entertainment Tonight: "There’s a watershed happening right now, slowly, maybe not fast enough, for women directors." So let's just wait and see.