Michelle Williams nabbed her first Emmy for Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie, for her role as Gwen Verdon in Fosse/Verdon, at the 2019 awards ceremony. In her acceptance speech, she noted the importance of equal pay in the industry, as well as creating healthy and productive work environments for women and marginalized communities.
"My bosses never presumed to know better than I did about what I needed in order to do my job and honor Gwen Verdon." #FosseVerdonFX star Michelle Williams thanks her studios during her acceptance speech for lead actress in a limited series https://t.co/WmT1Fmyol4 #Emmys pic.twitter.com/DDF1ONJV7Z
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) September 23, 2019
“When I asked for more dance classes, I heard ‘Yes.’ More voice lessons, ‘Yes,'” she said of her time working on Fosse/Verdon. “A different wig, a pair of fake teeth that weren’t made out of rubber, ‘Yes.’ And all of these things, they require effort, and they cost more money, but my bosses never presumed to know better than I did about what I needed in order to do my job and honor Gwen Verdon.”
Williams also thanked FX and Fox 21 Studios for paying her equal to her male co-stars. “They understood that when you put value into a person, it empowers that person to get in touch with their own inherent value. And where do they put that value? They put it into their work. And so the next time a woman, and especially a woman of color — because she stands to make 52 cents on the dollar compared to her white male counterpart — tells you what she needs in order to do her job, listen to her. Believe her. Because one day she might stand in front of you and say, ‘Thank you,’ for allowing her to succeed because of her workplace environment, and not in spite of it.”