Frances McDormand took home the Oscar for Best Actress at the 2018 Oscars but it’s her acceptance speech that has everyone talking.
McDormand used her time on stage to draw attention to the talented women nominated for awards this year. She asked all of the female nominees in every category, from acting to cinematography to costume design to stand up and enjoy their moment in the spotlight before asking male executives and directors to invite those same women into their office to talk about getting their stories financed.
At the end of McDormand’s speech, the actress left the audience with two important words: “inclusion rider.” For audiences at home, an inclusion rider is a clause in an actor’s contract that demands diversity in the production’s cast and crew in order to retain the talent. In other words, actors and actresses can for specific diversity initiatives, like for the crew to be 50% female or that speaking roles in a film reflect the demography of the setting of the story.
It’s a way to ensure inclusion but McDormand using her win to petition A-list stars to stick to their guns and make inclusion riders part of their contract negotiations is a bold move. Of course, this is Frances McDormand we’re talking about, so who’s surprised?