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Mo’Nique’s Oscar Speech (and her dress) | Manolo for the Big Girl

Mo’Nique’s Oscar Speech (and her dress)

Do you know my favorite thing about Mo’Nique’s near-inevitable (and strangely controversial) Oscar acceptance?


She took that stage like a queen, like she knew she had every right in the WORLD to be there and she was going to own every.single.minute of it. She wasn’t falsely humble. She turned out a great performance, went about her business and when she won the award for which she did not campaign (thus the comment about the performance vs. politics) she walked up in a $400 off-the-rack gown and accepted the accolades she earned. She was emotional, but composed, and in an homage to Hattie McDaniel –the first African American to win an Academy Award– wore a sapphire dress and a gardenia in her hair.

As Kate Harding wrote in Salon:

It was about being there as a credit to her profession, not her race or her gender or her size or the sisterhood of hairy-legged comics in open marriages, or whatever else people want her to represent. It was about unapologetically standing up for herself and her performance in a way Hattie McDaniel never could have. It worked, and she earned it.

15 Responses to “Mo’Nique’s Oscar Speech (and her dress)”

  1. Chicklet March 10, 2010 at 3:21 pm #

    I think Mo’Nique’s speech is controversial because to people who don’t know about the “subtle” Oscar campaigning that is de rigeur (people like my parents), it sounded like Mo’Nique was insulting the other nominees. My stepdad, in particular, thought she sounded “extremely ungracious” (direct quote).

  2. Geogrrl March 10, 2010 at 5:08 pm #

    Totally. Dignified and queenly summed it up.

    You’ve explained where the gardenias came from. I had wondered–they’re a lovely old-fashioned flower, but you don’t see them much anymore, so I was surprised to see them in her hair. I had assumed they were her favourite (they’re a favourite of my Mom).

  3. Plumcake March 10, 2010 at 5:47 pm #

    They are difficult to get, generally speaking, unless you grow them yourself, plus they are INCREDIBLY fragrant. I ordered three for a Billie Holiday concert my voice teacher was giving. I would wear two in my hair and give one for him for his boutonniere. Well let me tell you, they are POTENT. I was dizzy about 20 minutes in, and my director had to take his off after the third song.

  4. Sarah March 10, 2010 at 7:12 pm #

    She handled herself like a queen. I loved the way she spoke, walked and handled it all! She is truly awesome and looked stunning.

  5. Abby March 10, 2010 at 7:39 pm #

    I so agree. No false humility, but no hubris either. No blubbering, no jokes. I hate when women undercut their own accomplishments and she did not. She took herself seriously and thus we took her seriously as well. Big love for Mo’Nique.

    Her face is so beautiful. Look at her! I don’t mean in a fat girl “such a pretty face” way either. She just radiates that certain something. And I bet no Botox. Sandra Bullock can barely move her face, kind of sad.

  6. jeannemarie March 10, 2010 at 7:43 pm #

    you know – hers was my favorite acceptance speech. I didn’t stay up for the last few, but heard most of them. I really like that she took a risk on this role and pushed her own limits – she acknowledged that, her husband, and those who went before. fantastic!

  7. Smili March 10, 2010 at 9:40 pm #

    I must have something in my eye.

  8. Lisa March 11, 2010 at 3:51 am #

    I thought she sounded fierce and fabulous. And I loved her hair. The dress, meh. But she worked it.

  9. All Women Stalker March 11, 2010 at 4:05 am #

    You could feel her emotions through the cam. She was right to be proud of herself. I love her and her self-love.

  10. theDiva March 11, 2010 at 2:21 pm #

    Strong, proud, dignified woman. God love her.

  11. wildflower March 11, 2010 at 3:36 pm #

    Nothing girlish or coy about her. I wish all women would aspire to her poise and demeanor instead of pointing their toes inward and fluttering their eyelashes.

  12. Plumcake March 12, 2010 at 12:56 am #

    Although she was wearing some FIERCE eyelashes!

  13. wildflower March 12, 2010 at 4:19 pm #

    Yes, she is! But that’s part of the awesomeness, isn’t it? The gardenia, the lovely dress, the eyelashes–she’s totally feminine, yet not at all a silly giggling piece of decoration. It’s wonderful!

  14. JeanineMarie March 12, 2010 at 4:22 pm #

    I loved her walk as well.

    I have you-tubed it over and over and OVER.

    She really owned her walk, her speech, and her presence.


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