Entering Saturday afternoon’s 31st Film Independent Spirit Awards, one of the favorite nominees was Mya Taylor, honored for her role in Sean Baker’s "Tangerine."
Shortly after last year’s Best Supporting Male winner J.K. Simmons read off Taylor’s name and the crowd voiced their approval, Taylor strode to the stage and delivered one of the afternoon’s best speeches. As the first transgender actress to be recognized at the annual ceremony, Taylor expressed her gratitude for being able to be at this point. "I had come from almost nothing," Taylor said, "and then got this role in this movie and my life has just did a total 360."
Taylor’s sense of humor shines through, with jokes about her dress and Baker’s explanation of the film’s ambitious cinematography plan. In closing, Taylor said, "There is transgender talent. There’s very beautiful transgender talent. You better get out there and put it in your next movie."
Many of the other acceptance speeches from this year’s ceremony are now available via Film Independent’s YouTube channel.