All over the world, women are ditching degrading labels, owning their power and redefining statusquo in different fields on endeavour. Game changers, visionaries, trailblazers befitting titles have now been glued to their resume and we can’t help but cheer them on.
Today we take a brief look at some of Hollywood’s leading ladies spreading #BlackGirlMagic
1. Ava DuVernay
Critically accliamed filmmaker Director, producer, screenwriter known for When They See Us, 13th, Wrinkle in Time, Queen Sugar, Selma, Middle of Nowhere amongst others.
Proudly the highest grossing Black woman director in American box office history, the award winning filmmaker known for preaching the black narrative is a woman of many firsts:
The 48 year old won the directing award in the U.S. dramatic competition at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival for her second feature film Middle of Nowhere, becoming the first black woman to win the award. For her work on Selma (2014), DuVernay became the first black woman to be nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Director, and also the first black female director to have her film nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture.
2. Halle Berry
From Beauty Pageantry to Oscar winner and now soon to be director – upcoming film ‘Bruised’, there’s no stopping the 54 year old.
The stunner broke to limelight many thanks to comedy Boomerang and cemented her place with Monster’s Ball – in 2002 which fetched her an Oscar award. Berry till date is the only woman of color to have clinched the award – it’s bitter sweet for the actress who recently reflected on her historic win, tagging it one of her biggest heartbreaks: apart from no other black woman been honoured with the prestigious award, still having to battle for roles makes her have a rethink.
3. Regina King
If Beale Street Could Talk, Watch Men, This Is Us, the big names keep rolling. Award winning American actress and director Regina King named by Time in 2019 as one of the World’s Influential Women has had an enviable film career: a recipient of several awards, including an Academy Award and three Primetime Emmy Awards.
But the 49 year old didn’t start off in the spotlight, working from ground up, the star distinguished herself as a skilled actress way back from the 1990s in supporting roles in the films Boyz n the Hood, Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde, Miss Congeniality 2: to name but a few. The world first took notice of King when she was cast in the sitcom 227. in 1985.
The Oscar-winning actress recently made history as the first black female director at the Venice Film Festival, with her directorial debut “One Night in Miami”
with rave reviews from critics.
4. Janet Mock
TIME magazine’s “100 Most Influential People list, featured among Oprah’s leading ladies…American writer, television host, director, producer, best selling author and transgender rights activist, Pose writer, Janet Mock needs no introduction.
The 37 year old Redefining Realness author, a strong advocate for transgender rights in 2018 directed the episode of Pose titled “Love Is the Message”, thus making her the first transgender woman of color to write and direct any television episode.
Yet again in 2019 she made history after signing a three year multi-million dollar deal with Netflix – becoming the first openly transgender woman of color to bag a major deal with a content company.
Her memoir Redefining Realness is a New York Times bestseller. Mock is also a contributing editor for Marie Claire and a former staff editor of People magazine’s website.
5. Viola Davis
Award winning actress and producer Viola Davis, having won an Academy Award, an Emmy Award, and two Tony Awards, is the first African-American actress to achieve the “Triple Crown of Acting”. Time magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2012 and 2017.
Known for The Help, Doubt, Suicide Squad and Fences among others,
Davis who rose from the depth of poverty is dedicated towards advocacy and support of human rights and equal rights for women and women of color.
Viola Davis is the first and only actress of color to win a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series and is the first African-American to win five Screen Actors Guild Awards.