"And here are the all-male nominees," she told the crowd, to gasps and disappointed sighs. Disappointed, because in the era of Time's Up, we're somehow still not seeing women properly represented in Hollywood. This is why Portman decided to make this statement in the first place. In an interview with BuzzFeed, the actress revealed that the viral moment was pre-planned, and that she had spoken with other women in the industry to figure out how to best address the glaring male bias in the category.
"I discussed with some of the women I've been working with that they had offered to me to present the director category, but I felt uncomfortable because it seemed to be excluding some deserving nominees," she told the outlet."And how could I bring attention to it without disrespecting the nominees? Because it's not their fault, and they all made great work. You don't want to not recognize them. It's just, why aren't we recognizing the people who aren't part of this exclusive club? So one of the women recommended I say that, and it felt like stating something that was true."
The moment the words left her lips, there was a definite shift in the room. People were understandably tense about being called out, but according to Portman, this confrontation is necessary.
"We have to make it weird for people to walk in a room where everyone's not in the room," she continued. "If you look around a room and everyone looks like you, get out of that room. Or change that room. Whether you go to a restaurant, whether you go to your kid's school, whether you go to work — if you look around, and everyone's not in the room, change that room."
It all comes down, Portman explained, to "a devaluing of female voices." That's why we don't see as many of them on stage, and why women have to work twice as hard for the same recognition.
"That's what connects the pay, the representation, the harassment, the assault — it's a continuum of behavior that's silencing and very violent and devaluing," she said.
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