From Joanne Froggatt's plight to make sure survivors of rape are heard, to Patricia Arquette honoring all of the strong single mothers of the world, and back to Amy Adams recognizing her peers who serve as awesome female role models to her own 4-year-old daughter, this year's festivities were all about women inspiring women.
Maggie Gyllenhaal used her emotional speech to give a shout-out to Hollywood for starting to create more complex roles for women. "When I look around the room at the women who are in here and I think about the performances I've watched this year, what I see actually are women who are sometimes powerful, sometimes not, sometimes sexy, sometimes not, sometimes honorable, sometimes not, and what I think is new is the wealth of roles for actual women in television and film," said Gyllenhaal. "That's what I think is revolutionary, evolutionary, and that's what's turning me on."
Gyllenhaal very eloquently summed up the changes that people are beginning to notice in television and film. SheKnows caught up with some celebs after Sunday's big event who agreed with Gyllenhaal's assessment and have high hopes for the future of women in film. Catt Sadler, Laura Vandervoort, Grace Helbig, Azie Tesfai and the producers of Jane the Virgin chatted with us about their pride in the way Hollywood is heading and how they are more than happy to help fan flames of female empowerment.
"I hope for the women in Hollywood to keep doing what they're doing," said E!'s Sadler. "I feel like there's this real resurgence of really strong, powerful roles. Julianne Moore is an example of that. What a hero. An intelligent, beautiful, accomplished woman. She won tonight and for me fuels the fire for the woman in all of us who has a lot to get done, regardless of the boundaries that we all have to survive in, the limitations and what not."
Vandervoort, of Syfy's Bitten, echoed Sadler's sentiments about keeping the ball rolling. "More women," the actress said of what she wants for females in 2015. "Leading women. I want to see women doing flawed characters, strong characters. Just more of that. I'm so proud of what women have done this year and Meryl Streep is everyone's role model. So if we could have more Meryl Streeps in the world, that would be amazing. Women struggle with being taken seriously sometimes... which is why I try to do a lot of the stronger women who are in action."
Tesfai, who plays Nadine Hansan on Golden Globe-lauded Jane the Virgin, is justifiably excited to be part of an amazing show that is smashing through walls in Hollywood. "Coming from the Jane family, our showrunner is a woman, 80 percent of our writers are women," said Tesfai. "Jennie Urman, our showrunner, is very women-oriented and for us to be nominated tonight, I think just shows that women are brilliant and can raise that bar and come from a place of emotion and love and be technically talented and with that combined is so powerful." Tesfai did note, however, that our work to make women viewed as equals is not completely done. "I do think there is a stereotype that they're not as capable. I think the only way to break through that is to show capable work."
Jane the Virgin producers, Gary Pearl and Jorge Granier, share Tesfai's warm fuzzy feeling for the Jane family and how it's an amazing example of what women are capable of, but said they feel sexism in Hollywood follows a law of attraction of sorts. "Sexism exists in life, but it starts with the individual," they said. "If the individual man or woman is willing to accept that, then it will exist for them forever. When you look at someone like Gina [Rodriguez], who looks at it and says, 'This isn't the world I want,' she doesn't attract that. [We] don't attract people who still live in that old world."
And while Pearl and Granier feel sexism isn't real for those who don't want it to be, YouTube sensation, Helbig, is beyond considering that inequality factors into her work at all. "I consider myself a person in comedy," Helbig said. "My perspective just comes from a female point of view because I'm a lady. So I hope that everyone continues to succeed and find cool stuff to do."
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