Actress Michelle Williams took home the Emmy award for Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie at the 71st annual Emmy Awards for her portrayal of Gwen Verdon on FX’s Fosse/Verdon. The aforementioned biographical miniseries starred Sam Rockwell as famed director and choreographer, Bob Fosse alongside Williams and followed the story of the couple’s troubled personal and professional relationship.
After exuberantly taking the stage and accepting the award from Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Williams took the time to touch on equal pay and fair treatment towards women in Hollywood. She went on to thank those at FX and Fox 21st Studios responsible for paying her the same as co-star Sam Rockwell and mentioned that she felt like “an acknowledgement of what is possible when a woman is trusted to discern her own needs, feels safe enough to voice them and respected enough that they’ll be heard.”
When I asked for more dance classes I heard, ‘Yes’; more voice lessons, ‘Yes’; a different wig, a pair of fake teeth not made of rubber, ‘Yes.’ All of these things they require effort and they cost more money but my bosses never presumed to know better than I did about what I needed in order to do my job and honor Gwen Verdon.
Williams further added, “When you put value in a person, it empowers that person to get in touch with their own inherent value and where do they put that value? They put it into their work. Next time a woman —and especially a woman of color, because she stands to make 52 cents on the dollar compared to her white male counterpart —tells you what she needs in order to do her job, listen to her, believe her, because one day she might stand in front of you and say, ‘Thank you for allowing her to succeed because of her workplace environment and not in spite of it.”
That night, Williams beat out other fellow nominees Amy Adams for HBO’s Sharp Objects, Patricia Arquette for Showtime’s Escape at Dannemora, Joey King for Hulu’s The Act), and Aunjanue Ellis/Niecy Nash for Netflix’s When They see Us. This will also be the actresses first win, with the series also contributing to her executive producer nomination as well.
Below the series trailer can be viewed: