It was all black, everything

Oprah Winfrey poses backstage with her Cecil B. De Mille Award at the 75th Golden Globe Awards. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Oprah Winfrey poses backstage with her Cecil B. De Mille Award at the 75th Golden Globe Awards. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

The 75th Golden Globes is the first major Hollywood award ceremony since the film industry witnessed as many testimonies of sexual harassment.

In his opening speech, first time host of the awards, Seth Meyers ended his speech by paying tribute to all the women present.  “People in this room worked really hard to get here, but it’s clear more now than ever before that the women had to work even harder,” he said.

When collecting the honorary Cecil B DeMille lifetime achievement award, Oprah Winfrey’s speech recapitulated the award’s mood.

The red carpet at the 75th Golden Globes was dominated by stars dressed in all black, in support of the Time’s Up movements,  to honour survivors and victims of sexual assaults.

Time’s Up is seeking gender parity at various entertainment companies while advocating for legislation to diminish workplace harassment in all industries while

The organisation was formed after allegations against former movie mogul Harvey Weinstein were made public in a story by The New York Times in October of 2017.

Winfrey spoke passionately about the issues that have been raised since Hollywood stars testified on the sexual harassment they have encountered in the space.

“It is an honour: it is an honour and it is a privilege to share the evening with all of them and also with the incredible men and women who have inspired me, who have challenged me, who have sustained me and made my journey to this stage possible.

“I want to say that I value the press more than ever before as we try to navigate these complicated times, which brings me to this: what I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have. And I’m especially proud and inspired by all the women who have felt strong enough and empowered enough to speak up and share their personal stories. Each of us in this room are celebrated because of the stories that we tell, and this year we became the story.

“But it’s not just a story affecting the entertainment industry. It’s one that transcends any culture, geography, race, religion, politics or workplace. So I want tonight to express gratitude to all the women who have endured years of abuse and assault because they, like my mother, had children to feed and bills to pay and dreams to pursue”.

Since its establishment, the Time’s Up movement encouraged people to wear black to the Globes in addition to raising nearly $15 million for a legal defense fund.

In addition to Winfrey, some of the night’s other big winners also used their speeches to pay homage to the movement and the women who fought for them. During her acceptance speech, Nicole Kidman thanked her mother and sister. Reese Witherspoon said “I want to thank everyone who broke their silence this year and spoke out about abuse and harassment. You are so brave. So people out there who are feeling silenced by harassment, discrimination, abuse, Time’s Up! We see you, we hear you and we will tell your stories.”

With red carpets often dominated by talk of ‘who is wearing what’, with this effort, the Time’s Up movement is steering the conversation toward its more meaningful and urgent agenda.

Zaza Hlalethwa

Zaza Hlalethwa

Zaza Hlalethwa is a junior arts and culture writer at the Mail & Guardian. In 2018 she was the recipient of a Sikuvile commendation for feature writing. In 2019 she received the Gauteng region Vodacom Journalist of the Year award for feature and lifestyle writing. Her interests in the arts stem from a need to demystify the elitist and complex-looking art world while her pop culture analyses look to facilitate critical thinking and challenge perpetuated social norms by using popular, everyday references, multilingualism and prose. Read more from Zaza Hlalethwa

Client Media Releases

First two MTN CakeCrush Competition winners announced
Fun things to do in Cape Town
Sebata establishes Skills Development Centre
Fempreneurs shine during EWP gala event