The Elle Women in Hollywood celebration, an annual event now in its 30th year, recently gathered an array of influential figures in the entertainment industry at Nya Studios. Among them were prominent artists such as America Ferrera, Jennifer Lopez, Jodie Foster, Taraji P.
Henson, Danielle Brooks, Greta Lee, Fantasia Barrino Taylor, Lily Gladstone, and Eva Longoria. This esteemed group graced the December/January issue of Elle's 2023 Women in Hollywood, bringing to light the diverse journeys of women in Hollywood.
The event was marked by a spirit of camaraderie and mutual respect, as these leading ladies expressed admiration for each other and those who have trailblazed paths in the industry. However, they also spoke candidly about the challenges they faced as members of historically underrepresented groups in Hollywood.
America Ferrera, after receiving an award from close friend Eva Longoria, voiced her appreciation for the inclusivity of the event. “It is an incredible honor to stand alongside you and to know that our work is being honored in the main spaces, the dominant spaces,” Ferrera stated, highlighting the importance of diverse representation in major award ceremonies.
Reflecting on Career Challenges
The evening was not just about celebration but also about reflection on the hurdles they faced in their careers. Greta Lee, star of "Past Lives," shared a poignant memory from her student days when she struggled to find makeup that matched her skin tone, a moment she described as both lonely and upsetting.
Nearly two decades later, she expressed gratitude to her younger self for persevering. Jennifer Lopez, accompanied by her husband Ben Affleck, delivered a stirring acceptance speech for the Icon Award. With humor and poise, she listed the numerous awards she hasn't won, before emphasizing the significance of receiving her fifth Icon Award.
Lopez recounted her journey, from her early days in Hollywood to her multifaceted career as an actress, singer, and entrepreneur. She spoke passionately about the “tremendous opposition” she faced in being taken seriously across her diverse endeavors, touching on the stereotypes and limitations often imposed on women, especially those from minority backgrounds.
Lopez’s speech underscored the essence of being a woman: the ability to excel in various roles, often with little recognition or appreciation. Her words resonated with the attendees, celebrating the resilience and versatility of women in Hollywood.
This year's Elle Women in Hollywood event not only honored the achievements of these remarkable women but also highlighted the ongoing conversation about diversity and representation in the entertainment industry.