The 90th Academy Awards are this Sunday. That’s right—90 years of recognizing the art of cinema and all those who make it happen. But the Oscars wouldn’t be the same without the talented women who have made the award show something to celebrate. In honor of the upcoming ceremony, here are six women in Oscar’s history worth talking about!
1. Meryl Streep
Courtesy: Marie Claire
Let’s start this list off right, shall we? Meryl Streep is the most nominated actor of all time with a record-breaking 21 nominations. She’s won three times for performances in The Iron Lady, Sophie’s Choice and Kramer vs. Kramer. Meryl is a women’s rights activist and is considered by many to be the greatest actor of all time. Her very name has become synonymous with greatness! Streep’s influence in the film industry is undeniable; and who knows, she may be accepting yet another gold statue for her performance in The Post this Sunday!
2. Edith Head
Courtesy: The Culture Concept Circle
Edith Head was a famous costume designer who won eight Oscars for Best Costume Design. That makes her the most decorated woman in Oscar’s history! Edith’s spunky attitude and self-confidence make for some of the best stories in Hollywood. When she first applied to become a sketch artist at a studio, she had no experience and was still learning to draw people. So, she submitted her classmates’ sketches. When asked years later about this, she said, “I didn’t say the work was mine, I said, ‘This is the sort of thing we do in our school.'” LOL. Same, girl. Needless to say, her talent speaks for itself and the movies wouldn’t be the same without her.
3. Quvenzhané Wallis
Courtesy: W Magazine
This adorable movie star is the youngest actress to be nominated for an Academy Award for the film Beasts of the Southern Wild (a must-see and the only movie that’s ever made me cry)! She was just seven years old, and it was her first acting gig! Now 14, the wonderful Ms. Wallis has kept up with her acting career while becoming a published author of two children’s books. Can’t wait to see what this young superstar takes over next!
4. Oprah Winfrey
Courtesy: Entertainment Weekly
Of course, you can’t talk Oscars without mentioning Ms. Oprah Winfrey. This journalist/talk-show host/actress/television network owner/real-life goddess was awarded the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science’s rare Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, given to film industry personnel who have contributed substantially to humanitarian efforts. Oprah has also been nominated for Best Supporting Actress for her role in The Color Purple and Best Picture for her work on Selma. I don’t know what we, as a species, did to deserve Oprah, but thank you! *bows down*
5. Halle Berry
Courtesy: Elle UK
The beautiful mixed-race starlet was the first ever ethnic woman to win Best Actress at the Academy Awards in 2002 (fun fact: Best Actor went to Denzel Washington that year, making it the first time two actors of color won). Shockingly, she is still the only black woman to ever win the award. But Halle’s achievement marked a huge step forward, and since her career has spanned over 20 years, it wouldn’t come as a surprise to see her grace the stage and accept the award again sometime.
6. Kathryn Bigelow
Courtesy: Cinema Axis
Kathryn Bigelow directed The Hurt Locker in 2010, beating out her ex-husband James Cameron (Titanic, Avatar) for the Best Director award that year (you go girl). She is so far the only woman to ever win the Academy Award in that category. But that could all change this year, as Greta Gerwig has been nominated for her fantastic work on Lady Bird.