Women in Hollywood are uniting to deliver an important message during awards season.

As the brightest stars in Hollywood gather at the SAG awards to celebrate the best films of the year, these time-honored celebrations may look a little different — and for good reason.

For the first time ever, the 2018 Screen Actors Guild Awards will be hosted by a woman, Kristen Bell, and all of the night's presenters will be women.

This is not a coincidence. It's a very intentional, kickass decision to honor the women who made 2017 such a game-changing year when it comes to speaking up about attacks on women and families, sexual harassment, and misconduct.

“Beginning with the Women’s March in January, it’s been the year of the woman," SAG Awards Executive Director Kathy Connell told The Hollywood Reporter. “This is a unifying salute to women who have been very brave and speaking up.”


Kristen Bell attends the SAG-AFTRA Foundation Patron of the Artists Awards. Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for SAG-AFTRA Foundation.

Putting women front and center is not an attempt to slight or punish men for their performances or contributions to the industry this year. (Though frankly, some of them may deserve it.) Instead, the all-women lineup is a way to honor the strength and talent of women in a unique and highly visible way.

"It’s still an awards show and a celebration — we’re not here to preach to anybody,” Connell said. “To me, just having some of these fabulous women onstage sends its own message.”

Niecy Nash and Olivia Munn speak at the Screen Actors Guild Awards Nominations Announcement. Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images.

Just prior to the SAG Awards, women attending the 2018 Golden Globes will make a statement before the show even begins by wearing black on the red carpet.

According to US Weekly, a small group of actresses decided to wear black to protest the pervasive sexual harassment and misconduct against women in the industry. The idea has since spread, and some stars are even changing their gowns in time for rapidly approaching Jan. 7 award show.

Since the fashion at these award programs is as closely watched as the talent, every photo and red carpet interview will be an opportunity for women to share their own story or the impact sexual misconduct has had on the industry.

It's sure to be a powerful demonstration.

Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images.

Official or unofficial, these coordinated efforts to center women and equality are right on time.

As more women (and folks who aren't women) break the crushing silence that often follows sexual harassment or assault, it is becoming abundantly clear just how toxic and pervasive this problem is. Not just in Hollywood, but across every industry.

By prompting the discussion of these important issues at some of the most-watched events of the year, this long-overdue conversation continues — hopefully leading toward safe and comfortable workplaces for all.

Most Shared
via Twitter / Soraya

There is a strange right-wing logic that suggests when minorities fight for equal rights it's somehow a threat to the rights already held by those in the majority or who hold power.

Like when the Black Lives Matter movement started, many on the right claimed that fighting for black people to be treated equally somehow meant that other people's lives were not as valuable, leading to the short-lived All Lives Matter movement.

This same "oppressed majority" logic is behind the new Straight Pride movement which made headlines in August after its march through the streets of Boston.

Keep Reading Show less
popular

For most of us, the hypothetical question of whether we would stick with a boyfriend or girlfriend through the trials of cancer and the treatments is just that – a hypothetical question. We would like to think we would do the right thing, but when Max Allegretti got the chance to put his money where mouth is, he didn't hesitate for a second.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
via bfmamatalk / facebook

Where did we go wrong as a society to make women feel uncomfortable about breastfeeding in public?

No one should feel they have the right to tell a woman when, where, and how she can breastfeed. The stigma should be placed on those who have the nerve to tell a woman feeding her child to "Cover up" or to ask "Where's your modesty?"

Breasts were made to feed babies. Yes, they also have a sexual function but anyone who has the maturity of a sixth grader knows the difference between a sexual act and feeding a child.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Instagram / JLo

The Me Too movement has shed light on just how many actresses have been placed in positions that make them feel uncomfortable. Abuse of power has been all too commonplace. Some actresses have been coerced into doing something that made them uncomfortable because they felt they couldn't say no to the director. And it's not always as flagrant as Louis C.K. masturbating in front of an up-and-coming comedian, or Harvey Weinstein forcing himself on actresses in hotel rooms.

But it's important to remember that you can always firmly put your foot down and say no. While speaking at The Hollywood Reporter's annual Actress Roundtable, Jennifer Lopez opened up about her experiences with a director who behaved inappropriately. Laura Dern, Awkwafina, Scarlett Johansson, Lupita Nyong'o, and Renee Zellweger were also at the roundtable.

Keep Reading Show less
popular