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Emma Corrin resuscitates the debate over gender-neutral awards categories News84Media

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Awards season has barely begun, and one of the stars of streaming’s most decorated shows is weighing in on the debate over whether legacy awards shows such as the Oscars, Emmys and BAFTAs should fuse their gendered acting categories to avoid a binary system.

Emma Corrin, who starred in Season 4 of “The Crown,” told BBC News in an interview published over the weekend, “I hope for a future in which that happens.”

Corrin, who identifies with the pronouns they/them, was nominated for a Primetime Emmy in 2021 for playing Princess Diana in “The Crown.” They were nominated in the outstanding lead actress in a drama series category.

“I don’t think the categories are inclusive enough at the moment,” Corrin, who won a Golden Globe last year for the same role in the best performance by an actress in a television series – drama category, told the BBC.

“It’s about everyone being able to feel acknowledged and represented.”

According to the outlet, Corrin’s awards and nominations last year came at a time when they were still using her/her pronouns.

Now, “it’s difficult for me at the moment trying to justify in my head being non-binary and being nominated in female categories,” they said. “When it comes to categories, do we need to make it specific as to whether you’re being nominated for a female role or a male role?”

A BAFTA spokesperson told the BBC that the organization is considering a shift to gender-neutral categories, saying it is “engaged in proactive and thoughtful consultation on this subject.”

This isn’t the first time an actor in an acclaimed show or film has called for more consideration exhibited towards gender non-binary people in legacy awards.

In 2017, Asia Kate Dillon of the show “Billions” was asked by host network Showtime what category preference they preferred for an Emmy submission, prompting a conversation on the topic.

Dillon explained in a letter to the Television Academy in March of that year that they are “someone who experiences their gender identity as falling outside the boxes of ‘man’ and ‘woman’.”

“For whatever reason, I was full of confidence and hope and excitement,” Dillon told News84Media at the time of sending the letter. “If they come back and said, ‘You have to choose a gender. And we want to see your birth certificate,’ that would have been the direction the conversation would have gone. I was ready to really engage in the conversation.”

The Television Academy did not go in that direction, going on to reply to Dillon that “any performer can submit in any category for any reason,” according to the actor.

Around the same time as Dillon’s exchange with the Academy, MTV announced they were doing away with gendered categories for its MTV Movie and TV Awards.

The Grammys too got rid of gender-based categories in 2011, as part of a large-scale overhaul of the legacy music awards event.

Other awards to more recently update their categories to exclude a gender binary include the Spirit Awards and the Canadian Screen Awards, both of which made the change this year.

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