The Time’s Up movement, which began as a response to the Weinstein scandal of 2017, has swept the globe over the past weeks. Time’s Up is “a unified call for change from women in entertainment for women everywhere”, the initiative’s website states. “We envision nationwide leadership that reflects the world in which we live.”
At the 2018 Golden Globes, women wore black in a powerful, unifying move to support gender equality and protest sexual harassment. Now, Oprah has hosted a segment on the CBS Sunday Morning show about the Time’s Up movement with Reese Witherspoon, Kathleen Kennedy, Natalie Portman, America Ferrera, attorney Nina Shaw, Tracee Ellis Ross and producer Shonda Rhimes.
“Beyond raising awareness, how is this going to help the waitress, the farm worker, the factory worker, the caregiver? How does what’s happening in the room with Time’s Up affect the people who are watching this right now?” Oprah asked the women. Kennedy responded by saying: “We have to maintain the momentum of this conversation, because they can’t.”
Winfrey asked, “There’s so many men and women now who are uncomfortable in their workplaces because of all that’s been uncovered and aren’t just really sure how to be. What do we say to them?” This time, Portman answered for the group. “We’re humans; we’re all humans,” she said. “And I think it’s treating people as fellow humans … it’s not because you have a daughter that you respect a woman, it’s not because you have a wife or a sister, it’s because we’re human beings, whether we’re related to a man or not. We deserve the same respect.”
When Winfrey asked, “Were there those of you who joined because you were also a woman who could say, ‘Me too’?”, Witherspoon touched on her own experience with sexual abuse at the age of 16. “I have been very open that I was assaulted,” she said. Questioned about how speaking out has led to empowerment and control, the 41-year-old actress said: “I’m very emotional about it. But I keep going back to…this Elie Wiesel quote, ‘Silence helps the tormentors, it doesn’t help the tormented’… You have to evaluate whether silence is going to be your only option. And certain times that was our only option. But now is not that time. We have public voices. We have resources. But women who are workers in this country have nothing to gain in certain instances by coming forward. But we want to help. It gives me strength to hopefully help other women.”
Ferrera, who also touched on her own experience of sexual harassment, stressed the importance fo the Time’s Up movement. “A big part of this, too, is not just changing the written rules but the unwritten rules… What we are experiencing right now is a tectonic shift underneath our feet, where women, and men, are feeling like we can no longer not say the truth. And when the truth is said, there is maybe a ripple in our culture right now that is going to allow for there to be a change.”
Watch an excerpt from the CBS Sunday Morning show with Oprah below.
This I did Monday night before the mudslides hit. #TimesUp conversation with @RWitherspoon, @shondarhimes @americaferrera, @TraceeEllisRoss, Natalie Portman, Kathleen Kennedy, and Nina Shaw. Hope you’ll watch tomorrow on @CBSSunday. pic.twitter.com/dc9BXO3MAm
— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) January 13, 2018
Other Hollywood heavyweights have spoken out in support of the Time’s Up movement. Mark Wahlberg donated the $1.5 million he earned from reshoots of All The Money In The World to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund in Michelle Williams’ name, after discovering his costar only received approximately $1000 for reshoots. “I 100% support the fight for fair pay,” Wahlberg said in a statement posted on Twitter.
Michelle Williams acknowledged Wahlberg’s gesture in an official statement, saying: “If we truly envision an equal world, it takes equal effort and sacrifice. Today is one of the most indelible days of my life because of Mark Wahlberg, WME and a community of women and men who share in this accomplishment.” WME, the agency which represents Wahlberg, donated an additional 500,000 in Williams’ name.
Williams is the cover star of our Jan/Feb New Zealand issue, on sale now. Read her story and discover the future trends of 2018 inside the issue.