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Four Memorable Speeches by Women at the 2020 Oscars

After many female directors were neglected by the Academy, Oscar night 2020 was bound to see a variety of feminist speeches to compensate. That being said, female winners in all categories used the platform to have their voices heard. Here are our favorite feminist 2020 Oscar speeches. 


Renée Zellweger accepts the award for Actress in a Leading Role for Judy. 

Zellweger gives an impassioned speech about Judy Garland—and more specifically, about looking up to and celebrating our heroes. 

“Although Judy Garland did not receive this honor in her time, I am certain that this moment is an extension of the celebration of her legacy.” 


Hildur Guðnadóttir accepts the award for Best Original Score for Joker. 

Guðnadóttir is a first-time nominee and winner. Her emotional speech served as a call to action for women interested in careers in composition. She was the first woman to win Best Original Score since the Academy combined all the score categories into one. 

“To the girls, to the women, to the mothers, to the daughters, who hear the music, bubbling within, please speak up.” 


Carol Dysinger and Elena Andreicheva accept the awards for Best Documentary Short Subject for Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl).

The documentary, which follows young women learning to read, write, and skateboard in the war-torn city of Kabul, was rightfully acknowledged, and its creators delivered an impassioned speech about the project. 

“They teach girls to say I am here, I have something to say… don’t try to stop me.” 


Honorary mention: Natalie Portman’s outfit 

Portman’s black and gold Dior dress and cape were embroidered with the names of the female directors who were not nominated for Best Director in 2020. This was the second year in a row in which every director nominated was male. 

Portman honored Lorene Scafaria (Hustlers), Lulu Wang (The Farewell), Mati Diop (Atlantics), Marielle Heller (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood), Melina Matsoukas (Queen & Slim), Alma Har’el (Honey Boy), Celine Sciamma (Portrait of a Lady on Fire), and Greta Gerwig (Little Women). 

Featured Image by Davidlohr Bueso on Flickr

Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

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