Gal Gadot took home the #SeeHer gong at the 2018 Critics’ Choice Awards on Thursday (11 Jan) – and she used the opportunity to address women all over the world in one heck of an inspiring speech.
According to a statement released by the Broadcast Film Critics Association in December, the special #SeeHer award “recognises a woman who embodies the values set forth by the #SeeHer movement – to push boundaries on changing stereotypes and recognize the importance of accurately portraying women across the entertainment landscape.”
And, naturally, who better to present Gal Gadot with her accolade than her Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins?
“[Gadot] didn’t do it for the glory. She didn’t do it for the fame. She’s not here for the money. She did it for us,” said Jenkins.
“She knew the great importance of this character and what she could mean to the world if well done.”
The director then presented the award to Gadot, who led Wonder Woman to worldwide success: to date, Wonder Woman has pulled in over $707.9 million at box offices around the globe, putting an end to the tired old debate about whether audiences really want to see women-led comic book blockbusters. (Answer: yes, we do.)
Naturally, this has all had a profound effect on the film’s star – and she did her best to sum up her feelings in a truly inspiring speech.
“Throughout my career, I was always asked to describe my dream role,” began Gadot. “It was clear to me that I wanted to play a strong and independent woman — a real one.”
Gadot says she found these qualities in her role as Diana, the Amazonian warrior princess who gives up everything she loves to save humanity.
“She’s full of heart, strength, compassion, and forgiveness,” she said of her on-screen counterpart. “She sees wrong that must be made right. She takes action when everyone around her is idle. She commands the attention of the world, and in doing so, she sets a positive example for humanity.
“She gets confused, insecure, and she’s not perfect — and that’s what makes her real.”
Gadot continued: “We wanted her to be universal, to be an inspiration to all people all around the world, and our plan was to make sure we didn’t give too much attention to the fact that she’s a woman.”
The star went on to praise Jenkins for their female-led success at the box office, before dedicating her award to the women of the #MeToo movement – the very same women that the Time’s Up initiative, founded by some of Hollywood’s brightest stars, is aiming to help.
“In the past weeks and months, we’ve been witnessing a movement in our industry and society, and I want to share this award with all the women and men who stand for what’s right: Standing for those who can’t stand or speak for themselves.
“My promise and commitment to all of you is that I will never be silenced, and we will continue [to] band together to make strides, uniting for equality.”
Gadot added: “As artists and filmmakers, it’s not only our job to entertain, but to inspire and educate about love and respect.
“[This is dedicated] to those who can’t stand or speak for themselves… I will never be silent.”
The Time’s Up initiative, as we previously reported, will seed a legal defence fund, backed by $13 million in donations, to help less privileged women protect themselves from sexual misconduct and the fallout from reporting it.
It will also include the legislation needed to protect against sexual abuse and harassment in the workplace, as well as a drive to reach gender parity across Hollywood.
You can read all about Times Up and learn how to get involved here.
Images: Rex Features