Lily Gladstone found a bonus benefit to winning the lead actress SAG Award: backstage bicep curls. pic.twitter.com/UiH7rwm4MG
— AP Entertainment (@APEntertainment) February 25, 2024
— Molly Hennessy-Fiske (@mollyhf) January 27, 2024
Representation matters. From the Washington Post, “Lily Gladstone made history. The Blackfeet Nation found a champion”:
BROWNING, Mont. — Rence Champ stayed up late to watch the glittery Hollywood ceremony, a world away from the frigid, rural landscape where the tousle-haired third-grader lives. He was rewarded with something astonishing: a woman in sparkling jewels and a strapless gown, clutching a trophy and speaking a language he’d never heard on television — a language he studies at school, a language he understands.
The boy proudly translated for his mother the words that Lily Gladstone spoke after becoming the first Indigenous person to win a Golden Globe for best actress, announcing to all that she hailed from the Blackfeet Nation here, where sprawling prairies meet jagged mountains known commonly as the crown of the continent and to the tribe as the backbone of the earth…
Nowhere is the Gladstone effect felt more deeply than in Browning Public Schools, which in recent years has pushed to revitalize the endangered Blackfoot language using a novel writing system. Words from her acceptance speech — “this is for every little rez kid” — are written on a whiteboard in a high school classroom. First-graders at Bullshoe Elementary made a TikTok video thanking her for her bravery. Photos of Gladstone adorn a bulletin board in the office of Blackfeet Native American studies director Robert Hall, who grew up in Browning and has been hailed locally since the actress told reporters he was a “good friend” who had taught her Blackfoot words.
“Lily Gladstone speaking Blackfoot up on that stage is a victory. It’s saying: I’m still alive,” said Hall, now busy fielding inquiries about the language from newly interested students and teachers. “This isn’t just a symbolic action. This is something that is tangible and has created change.”