A-list actresses are calling for more roles for women

‘Bring women to the front of their own stories and make them the hero of their own stories’

Emmys female roles
(Image credit: Rex)

‘Bring women to the front of their own stories and make them the hero of their own stories’

The Primetime Emmy awards took place on Sunday, with A-listers from far and wide flocking to the Microsoft Theatre, LA, to celebrate the best of 2017's television.

‘It’s been an incredible year for women in television,’ Reese Witherspoon explained in a nod to the amount of female focused programmes honoured this year, with The Handmaid’s Tale and Veep both taking home gongs.

It was Big Little Lies however, the HBO mini series that Reese not only starred in but co-produced with friend Nicole Kidman, that emerged as the night’s big winner.

Big Little Lies uk

(Image credit: HBO)

The series featuring almost entirely female stars, with Shailene Woodley, Laura Dern and Zoe Kravitz starring alongside Reese and Nicole, won a whopping five awards during the evening, taking home the Emmys for Best Limited Series, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress and Best Actor.

In a joint acceptance speech, co-producers Nicole and Reese spoke out about a lack of roles for women, calling for change.

‘Bring women to the front of their own stories and make them the hero of their own stories,’ encouraged Reese, before Nicole went on to talk about the power when women join forces, paying tribute to their bond.

‘This is a friendship that then created opportunities,’ she explained. ‘It created opportunities out of frustration because we weren’t getting offered great roles. So now, more great roles for women, please.’

(Image credit: Rex)

Laura Dern, who picked up the best supporting actress gong for her role in the HBO mini series praised the two female producers in her acceptance speech, acknowledging the difficulties that her friends and colleagues had previously spoken about.

‘I’ve been acting since I was 11 years old and I think I have worked with maybe 12 women, so I want to thank the television academy for honouring our show,’ she explained. She then went on to thank Nicole and Reese’s mothers, praising them ‘for not only giving us extraordinary women but really well-read women because that’s how I’m getting my parts. I share this with my tribe of four ladies. I feel very proud to be part of reflecting fierce women and mothers, finding their voice.’

Well we’re feeling incredibly empowered - if you’ll excuse us we’re off to rewatch Big Little Lies.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.