By Matt Neglia
The Women Film Critics Circle (WFCC) have announced their winners representing the best in film for 2020.
Click below to see the winners.
BEST WOMAN STORYTELLER (Screenwriting Award)
WINNER: Never Rarely Sometimes Always – Eliza Hittman
Runner Up: Promising Young Woman – Emerald Fennell
Nomadland – Chloe Zhao
The United States vs. Billie Holiday – Suzan-Lori Parks
WINNER: Carey Mulligan – Promising Young Woman
Runner Up (tie): Frances McDormand – Nomadland
Runner Up (tie): Vanessa Kirby – Pieces of a Woman
Andra Day – The United States vs. Billie Holiday
BEST SCREEN COUPLE
WINNER: Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan – Ammonite
Runner Up: Tom Hanks and Helena Zengel – News of the World
Andy Samberg and Cristin Milioti – Palm Springs
Barbara Sukowa and Martine Chevallier – Two of Us (Deux)
ADRIENNE SHELLY AWARD – For a film that most passionately opposes violence against women
Adrienne Shelly was a promising actress and filmmaker who was brutally strangled in her apartment in 2006 at the age of forty by a construction worker in the building, after she complained about noise. Her killer tried to cover up his crime by hanging her from a shower20rack in her bathroom, to make it look like suicide. He later confessed that he was having a “bad day.” Shelly, who left behind a baby daughter, had just completed her film Waitress, which she also starred in, and which was honored at Sundance after her death.
JOSEPHINE BAKER AWARD – For best expressing the woman of color experience in America
The daughter of a laundress and a musician, Baker overcame being born black, female and poor, and marriage at age fifteen, to become an internationally acclaimed legendary performer, starring in the films Princess Tam Tam, Moulin Rouge and Zou Zou. She also survived the race riots in East St. Louis, Illinois as a child, and later expatriated to France to escape US racism. After participating heroically in the underground French Resistance during WWII, Baker returned to the US where she was a crusader for racial equality. Her activism led to attacks against her by reporter Walter Winchell who denounced her as a communist, leading her to wage a battle against him. Baker was instrumental in ending segregation in many theaters and clubs, where she refused to perform unless integration was implemented.
KAREN MORLEY AWARD – For best exemplifying a woman’s place in history or society, and a courageous search for identity
Karen Morley was a promising Hollywood star in the 1930s, in such films as Mata Hari and Our Daily Bread. She was driven out of Hollywood for her leftist political convictions by the Blacklist and for refusing to testify against other actors, while Robert Taylor and Sterling Hayden were informants against her. And also for daring to have a child and become a mother, unacceptable for female stars in those days. Morley maintained her militant political activism for the rest of her life, running for Lieutenant Governor on the American Labor Party ticket in 1954. She passed away in 2003, unrepentant to the end, at the age of 93.
ACTING AND ACTIVISM AWARD
Regina King – The first celebrity to commit to the Time’s Up ‘4% Challenge’ which urges the industry to hire more women directors, the award winning actress has also pledged to have women make up fifty percent of the crews for her films.
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
**WFCC PAULINE KAEL SPECIAL JURY AWARDS 2020**
THE INVISIBLE WOMAN AWARD
Supporting performance by a woman whose exceptional impact on the film dramatically, socially or historically, has been ignored
WINNER: Cicely Tyson – A Fall From Grace
Runner Up: Dianne Wiest – I Care A Lot
MOMMIE DEAREST WORST SCREEN MOM OF THE YEAR
WINNER: Sarah Paulson – Run
HALL OF SHAME
Rudy Giuliani – For removing any doubt about the kind of creepy predator he is, in Borat Subsequent Moviefilm. Of course there were no consequences for his behavior, even though it was captured on film and broadcast worldwide.
Dennis Harvey – in his Variety review for Promising Young Woman, stating Carey Mulligan is not ‘hot enough’ for the role. Not to mention perpetuating the lie that rape is about sex and not violence against women. And, why we need women film critics more than ever…
The Prom – for casting straight actors in queer roles in the most anticipated lesbian movie of the year, and making it seem like overcoming homophobia is as simple as singing a song.
Dallas Sonnier and Adam Donaghey – For sexual harassment and abuse at Cineaste Magazine, and the cover-up.
You can follow Matt and hear more of his thoughts on the Oscars & Film on Twitter at @NextBestPicture