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Sarah Polley: Snubbed Female Filmmakers Will Be ‘Top of Mind for Me’ During Golden Globes

Polley told IndieWire she thinks the directors of "Till," "The Woman King," and "Aftersun" should've been nominated tonight.

Sarah Polley attends the 2023 Golden Globe Awards.

Sarah Polley attends the 2023 Golden Globe Awards.

Gilbert Flores for Variety

Sarah Polley earned some of the strongest reviews of her career in 2022 for “Women Talking,” her ensemble drama about a group of women forced to make an impossibly difficult decision after learning a horrifying secret about their religious community. The festival favorite has all the makings of a serious Oscar contender, with its A-list cast including Rooney Mara, Frances McDormand, Claire Foy, and Jessie Buckley expected to compete for plenty of acting nods. Polley herself is also in the mix for Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay (an award she was previously nominated for in 2008 for “Away From Her”).

But despite all of the positive awards buzz she has picked up, Polley isn’t ready to bask in the glory just yet. The actress-turned-director still has a lot of thoughts about the lack of female nominees at prestigious award shows, and she’s making it clear that there was no shortage of potential contenders last year.

Speaking to IndieWire on the Golden Globes red carpet, Polley said that while her film is up for two awards tonight, she’ll be thinking about the many female filmmakers who were not nominated this year.

“On my mind tonight, specifically, are the incredible female filmmakers who weren’t represented here tonight,” Polley said. “So the filmmakers of ‘Till’ and ‘The Woman King’ and ‘Aftersun,’ the list goes on and on. So for me, I think that’s top of mind for me tonight, just the incredible work done by female filmmakers this year. And I think a lot about [‘Till’ star] Danielle Deadwyler, who isn’t here tonight.” 

Polley’s work on “Women Talking” earned her a Golden Globe nomination for Best Screenplay, and the film’s composer Hildur Guðnadóttir picked up a nod for Best Original Score. However, the film was shut out of the Best Motion Picture, Best Director, and acting categories. All five nominees for Best Director at this year’s Golden Globes — James Cameron for “Avatar: The Way of Water,” Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert for “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” Baz Luhrmann for “Elvis,” Martin McDonagh for “The Banshees of Inisherin,” and Steven Spielberg for “The Fabelmans” — are men.

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