“But there’s a story we’ve been really afraid to see…”
Jane Fonda gave an incredible speech about inclusion, diversity, and storytelling during last night’s Golden Globes.
Accepting the Cecil B. DeMille Award for her contribution to the entertainment industry during Sunday’s socially distant awards, Fonda chose not to speak about her own career and achievements, but the importance of sharing the stories of those who are often overlooked in Hollywood and beyond.
“You see, stories have a way to change our hearts and our minds,” she said. “They can help us see each other in a new light. To have empathy. To recognise that, for all our diversity, we are humans first, right?
“You know, I’ve seen a lot of diversity in my long life and at times I’ve been challenged to understand some of the people I’ve met, but inevitably, if my heart is open and I look beneath the surface, I feel kinship.”
“But there’s a story we’ve been really afraid to see and hear about ourselves and this industry,” she went on. “The story about which voices we respect and elevate and which we tune out.”
Fonda went on to pay tribute to just some of the powerful black-produced TV shows and films of the past year that largely will not get the recognition they deserve during awards season. Among them was Micheala Coel’s incredible series I May Destroy You, which was noticeably absent from the Golden Globes nominations.
“Just this year, Nomadland helped me feel love for the wanderers among us,” said Fonda. “And Minari opened my eyes to the experience of immigrants dealing with the realities of life in a new land.
“Ramy helped me feel what it means to be Muslim American. I May Destroy You has taught me to consider sexual violence in a whole new way.”
Fonda’s incredible speech came after it was reported that none of the 87 members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association are black.
Before last night’s event, they released a statement, saying: “We understand that we need to bring in Black members, as well as members from other underrepresented backgrounds, and we will immediately work to implement an action plan to achieve these goals as soon as possible.
“Tonight, while we celebrate the work of artists from around the globe, we recognise that we have our own work to do.”