Alfre Woodard’s Annual Pre-Oscars Dinner

Source: Hollywood Reporter

alfre woodards annual party 2015

THIS IS WHAT ZOE SALDANA TAUGHT US AT ALFRE WOODARD’S PRE-OSCARS DINNER

Kerry Washington, Rosario Dawson, Viola Davis and Angela Bassett, among others, also offered words of wisdom during the intimate gathering. Sisterhood doesn’t get any better than this.

No backstabbing, rude remarks, catty comments or anything of the sort happened on Wednesday night at the Beverly Wilshire during Alfre Woodard’s annual pre-Oscars dinner — properly titled as the Oscar’s Sistahs Soiree — celebrating black women in entertainment. The event, in its sixth year, is all about support and sisterhood among Hollywood’s top actresses of color — like an exclusive sorority party, only much more hip and fashionable…

…worth listening to are the words from the actresses themselves on why Woodard’s bash is so special and so important in a town not known for authentic embraces, especially during a time when the challenges of being a woman in Hollywood have been so thoroughly examined — not to mention the challenges of being a woman of color in this town.

Alfre Woodard: “I’ve been in this town 40 years. Nobody has ever said, ‘I think we need to have more black women and brown women this year on TV and in feature films.’ Nobody has said that. We are here because we are brilliant at what we do and we are persistent and we don’t go away. If you locked these women in a trunk at the bottom of the ocean, they would find a way to make their presence known. … To know that the women who do what you do and have the experience you have are lifting each other up. They’re behind you, they’re supporting you. By having this event, I want them to know when they have that swag going down the carpet that there is this sisterhood behind their step.”

Kerry Washington:  “[This party] is about all of the things awards season is supposed to be about — celebrating excellence — but it also has a sense of immense sisterhood and sincerity and authenticity. You don’t always get that throughout the awards season — or even in life. This is a room full of nothing but love.”…

Zoe Saldana:  “There’s nothing we can’t do. I will never have any other attitude than that one. I was raised that way. That’s how I’ve gotten where I’ve gotten. If I thought every morning about all the reasons I should stay home then I would not be here. We will all have reasons that the world will be against us. We have to ignore those and focus on the ones that are for us.”…

Viola Davis: “Here’s the thing about being a woman of color and an actor of color: You get it. You understand that it’s going to be challenging so you find a way to navigate your way in this business and become an actor and the artist you are with what you’ve been given. But the challenge is that we’re not included in the narrative that lets us shine. That’s the only problem. If you’re the third girl from the left or the bus driver, and you’ve been in the business for 30 years, you know you can blow it out of the box. You’re just as good as anybody else, [but] you can’t show your talent being the bus driver in two scenes. That’s what we’ve been relegated as. We very rarely drive the narrative; that’s the challenge. So, it’s very important to get it out. It’s important to be in a safe place and let it out and to share.”  (Complete article at the source.)

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