For most people, the weeks after the holidays can feel like a big letdown. The parties are over, the presents unwrapped, and the gloom of winter is really setting in. But you know what’s here to brighten your days—or at least a number of Sunday evenings? Awards season!
I love everything about this run from the Golden Globes (which are this Sunday, January 5) through the Oscars on February 9. In between, we also get the Independent Spirits, the SAGs, the Critics Choice, and many more. As a pop culture junkie, I love the awards for all the great creative work they honor—but, of course, the most fun can be had watching (and critiquing) the red carpets from our couches.
This year there are so many amazing women to celebrate in film—though representation is still a serious issue. Once again, the Hollywood Foreign Press neglected to nominate a single woman for Best Director, even though there were so many worthy candidates like Greta Gerwig (Little Women), Marielle Heller (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood), Lulu Wang (The Farewell), and Lorene Scafaria (Hustlers) just to name a few. Hopefully that will be rectified when the Academy Award nominations are announced on January 13.
Here are just some of the other women we’ll be rooting for this season.
Jennifer Lopez, Hustlers
Please let 2020 be the year J. Lo gets an Oscar nom and performs at the Super Bowl—all at the glorious age of 50.
Charlize Theron, Bombshell
Listen, there’s very little Theron can’t do—but her transformation into Megyn Kelly, from the face to the voice, is incredible. Plus, the movie continues to shine a light on sexual harassment in the workplace.
Margot Robbie, Bombshell
Her character in the story of the Roger Ailes scandal at Fox News is not based on one actual person, but she is the emotional center of the film and, as usual, mesmerizing to watch. (She’s also fabulous as Sharon Tate in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.)
The Little Women
Greta Gerwig’s take on the Louisa May Alcott classic is fresh and modern, but also stays true to everything you’ve spent your life loving about the March sisters. Here’s hoping she’s recognized for her screenplay and directing. The performances by Saoirse Ronan as Jo and Florence Pugh (a total rising star) as Amy are the standouts in an amazing cast. Bless an actress who can make me feel anything but rage against Amy March!
Renee Zellweger, Judy
Who doesn’t love a triumphant comeback to the big screen? Zellweger stepped back from the white hot glare of the spotlight for a while and is back as Judy Garland to rave reviews. Many think the Oscar is hers to lose.
Awkwafina, The Farewell
Perhaps you only know Awkwafina for her hilarious turns in Crazy Rich Asians or Ocean’s 8, but she brought a more serious side to the beautiful film by Lulu Wang about a family returning to China and dealing with the declining health of their grandmother. She’s funny in it too, but the girl’s got serious range.
There are a number of female directed (or co-directed) docs considered front-runners this year. Add the work of Petra Costa (The Edge of Democracy), Julie Reichart (American Factory), Waad Al-Kateab (For Sama), and Nanfu Wang and Lynn Zhang (One Child Nation) to your queues immediately as many of them are streaming.
“Spirit”, the singer’s original song from The Lion King, is on the Oscars shortlist for Best Song. Let’s all agree that we’d like to see Queen Bey one step closer to an EGOT, right? Plus, the Academy really doesn’t want the Beyhive coming after them.
Abby Gardner is Indy Maven’s executive editor who will be emotionally recovering from how much she loved the new Little Women until further notice.