Jill Soloway made headlines Sunday for using her 2015 Emmys acceptance speech as an opportunity to advocate for the transgender community, but it appears her work is not yet done. International Business Times reporter Monica Castillo was on hand to hear the groundbreaking director's opinions on diversification in Hollywood in the press room after her big win. What Soloway, 49, had to say will amaze you.
When asked about diversification in Hollywood, Soloway acknowledged the issue extends far beyond just the trans community. She noted "straight white men" have been running the industry for far too long, leaving few roles for under represented groups like men and women of color and queer actors and directors. She added, in her opinion, those with access to the spotlight should be far more willing to help those who's voices are not being heard.
"The more I direct the more I recognize that directing is kind of litigating for the way I see the world. Straight white men have had their hands on protaganism, the camera, for way too long," Soloway said. "People who have access to the camera need to be able to share that with women, with people of color, queer people -- especially trans people. People really need to be able to make work from their point of view."
The Emmy Award winning "Transparent" director went to to share with reporters her hopes for trans people, and other minorities, in Hollywood. She said that she was hopeful that one day under represented groups will be considered for roles the same way heterosexual white males are: based on their abilities, rather than the color of their skin, their religion or their sexual orientation.
"There's a really interesting thing about this question of meritocracy that’s come up recently in the news and how people have access to their voices. There’s no such thing as a meritocracy where you have to be from a certain class to have access to things like acting school and film school. People really need to find and identify and nurture people of color, women, trans people and queer people and include them in the creative process," she said.
Soloway, once again, made mention of TransEquality.Org, an organization whose site appeared to crash after both she and "Transparent" star Jeffrey Tambor mentioned them in their acceptance speeches. She said it currently is legal in a majority of the U.S. states for business owners to discriminate against trans people. She assured listeners, however, that TransEquality.Org and the trans equality bill are working to change that.
"People talk about the trans tipping point but we are in such early days in the trans civil rights movement," She said. "Any of my trans friends could walk into a department, go to apply for a job and if somebody looked them in the eye and said, 'We don’t want trans people here’ that is legal in 32 states so, um, TransEquality.Org and the trans equality bill are working to change that."