Like the Golden Globe awards last Sunday night, the 25th Annual Critics' Choice Awards served a plant-based meal during the ceremony. Airing on the CW, on January 12, one celebrity award-winner made a point of acknowledging the "amazing" gesture.
Joaquin Phoenix won the Best Actor award for Joker. During his acceptance speech, he said he wanted to “thank the awards for going plant-based and trying to offset our carbon footprint. I think that is an amazing message.”
Later in the show, host Taye Diggs described the meal and the reason for the decision to go with a menu of vegan burgers and vegetarian burritos: “to shine a light on issues of sustainability and climate change.”
Taye Diggs: If you look around, you will see that we are serving food to our guests right now. Critics' Choice has partnered up with The Counter and Baja Fresh to provide delicious plant-based burgers and vegetarian burritos to help shine a light on issues of sustainability and climate change. We'll be back with more awards right after this short break.
The award for the Best Limited Series went to When They See Us and Ava Duvernay, Executive Producer, Director, and Writer, accepted the award. She made a point of telling the audience that “in this country most specifically”, the poor and innocent go to jail while the rich and guilty go free. What's an award show without some good old fashioned blaming America for social injustice? Perhaps Ava should take a look at what is going on in Iran right now.
Ava Duvernay: Thank you! Thank you for standing. Thank you to the critics before finally letting us take the stage! Yes! We made a four-part, five -hour film. It was an act of love. 179 actors. 117 of them have speaking parts. 312 members of the crew. My three co-writers. My comrades. My fellow producers at participant, Tribeca, and Harpo, and great champions at Netflix who let a black woman do her thing. What can I say? Thank you so much. This series began with a tweet. This series began from a tweet from Raymond Santana, and now he, and they all stand for something very larger than I ever imagine. They stand for justice. They shine bright like the gems that they always were but we never saw. If you watch their story and felt something in that moment, I invite you to consider doing something. There is no right thing to do. You do what you feel where you are, but don't let your anger and sadness be all. Cases like this are happening all around the world, in this country most specifically on our watch. People who are poor and innocent are behind bars while the rich and guilty walk free and gain power.
The late poet Audre Lorde said, "When we speak, we are afraid our words will not be welcomed. But when we are silent, we are still afraid, so it is better to speak."
The annual awards season is just getting started. There will be plenty more opportunities for our moral betters in Hollywood to lecture us on social justice and climate change. Eat up, everybody!