So today I meant to publish a post on all the phenomenal films directed by women in 2010 but have distractingly been swept up in the excitement that was Sunday night’s Golden Globes. The two subjects are closely related, but I would like to focus here on the Golden Globes and postpone filling you in on other exciting film news for the time being.
Reading the headlines, it would seem as if the biggest news from Sunday night’s events were the offensive jokes to come out of the host Ricky Gervias’ mouth if not the more garish ones to come out of that of the Cecil B. DeMill Award winner, Robert De Niro. While straight white men were busy stealing the spotlight, however, some truly remarkable people, roles and productions were taking home the medals.
The Best Television Series—Comedy Or Musical award went to Glee, the widely popular high school musical show that from the start has put front and central the struggle of minorities in its plot lines, most recently tackling the topical issue of gay-bullying and retorting with delightfully queer musical numbers. Even more exciting, Chris Colfer, the actor who plays the protagonist of this storyline and score, himself an openly-gay teen, won the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television. His speech, which concluded with a tough but uplifting dedication, brought tears to many LGBT and friends’ eyes: “To all the amazing kids that watch out show and the kids that our show celebrates who are constantly told no by the people in their environments, by bullies at school, that they can’t be who they are or have what they want because of who they are: well, screw that kids!”
Jane Lynch, who plays the controversial Sue Sylvester, the school cheerleading coach partially responsible for the kids’ torment, also won the award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television. Mixed in among jokes about Sue Sylvester’s biting character, her speech cited the joy that comes from making such an inspiring show for teens and concluded with a thank you to her wife and their two children.
The other big LGBT winner for the night, The Kids Are All Right, enacted a feat of accomplishment, taking away the Best Motion Picture—Comedy or Musical for its portrayal of a lesbian marriage, which, two decades in, is surprisingly just like any other. Having loved the movie, myself, I recently watched director Lisa Cholodenko’s first feature-length film, High Art (1998), and quickly became enthralled! Putting the two films side–by-side, it becomes apparent that she has the talent to utilize both drama and comedy, issues of elitism and the every day, and representations of the struggle to find love and the even more difficult struggle to keep it to make lesbian content pleasurable and apt to the broader public. I can’t wait to see what she does next! Annette Bening also won the award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture–Comedy or Musical for her portrayal of Nic, one of the two lesbian mothers in the film. In her acceptance speech she describes the production as “a labor of love,” thanking Cholodenko and her co-star Julianne Moore for approaching her for the role.
Yesterday The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) released this statement:
“Gay and lesbian actors, characters and storylines are not only helping build support for full equality, but are also generating unprecedented box office success and critical acclaim,” said GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios. “Last night’s Golden Globe winners and nominees are a testament to the increased support for our community among everyday Americans and exemplify a new entertainment industry standard that is more inclusive than ever before. GLAAD congratulates yesterday’s LGBT nominees and winners.”
I am sure I will neither be the first nor the last to second this congratulation. Sunday night’s Golden Globes, if anything, offer us hope for the future of LGBT representation and performers in film and TV.