LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Frances McDormand capped an awards season of accolades with the biggest one of all: an Oscar for best actress.
After sweeping trophies at the Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild, Independent Spirit and BAFTA ceremonies, McDormand won for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.”
She played Mildred Hayes, a hardened woman seeking justice for her daughter’s murder in the crime drama.
McDormand rarely does anything A-list actresses are known to do: wear designer gowns, walk red carpets or politic during awards season. Yet she collected all the biggest trophies.
“I don’t do everything, as you know,” she said backstage. “I don’t show up all the time. I only show up when I can and when I want to.”
At the Spirit awards on Oscar eve, McDormand said it had been hard not to swear the last couple months because “this awards convention goes on (expletive) forever.”
After offering thanks on Sunday night, McDormand turned serious and said, “Now I want to get some perspective.”
She asked all the other female nominees in every category to stand up in the audience.
“Meryl, if you do it, everyone else will,” she said to best-actress nominee Meryl Streep, who sat in the front row of the Dolby Theatre.
“Look around everybody, because we all have stories to tell and projects that need to be financed,” McDormand said, urging the decision-makers not to talk about proposals at the post-show parties but to meet in the office.
Backstage, she noted the Time’s Up movement that took hold at the Golden Globes in January.
“We’re going to be one of the small industries that try to make a difference,” McDormand said. “I think $21 million in the legal defence fund is a great way to start and the commission that’s being headed by Anita Hill. That’s really smart. We actually started a conversation that will change something.”
McDormand picked up her trophy that she had set down backstage, thrust it upside down in the air and marched out of the room.
She beat out Sally Hawkins of “The Shape of Water,” Margot Robbie of “I, Tonya,” Saoirse Ronan of “Lady Bird,” and 21-time nominee Streep of “The Post.”
It was the second Oscar win for McDormand. Her first came in 1997 for “Fargo,” directed by her husband Joel Coen and his brother Ethan.
This story has been corrected to show that McDormand won her first Oscar in 1997.
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