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Steven Spielberg's new film starring Meryl Streep
and Tom Hanks hits US theaters on December 22 2017.
  January 8th, 2014       Posted by Frederik       Display Comments

Yesterday, Meryl has attended the National Boards of Review Awards Gala in New York. Pictures from the ceremony have been added to the image library, with additional information below.

As Variety reports, this year’s National Board of Review dinner will forever be remembered for its nine-minute tour-de-force speech from Meryl Streep. Streep, for once, wasn’t invited to accept an award. Instead, she was there to honor Emma Thompson for her portrait as “Mary Poppins” creator P.L. Travers in Disney’s “Saving Mr. Banks.” There was plenty of effusive Thompson praising in the speech — with phrases like “she’s practically a saint” and “she’s a beautiful artist” — and it ended with a poem that Streep had written for her friend titled “An Ode to Emma, Or What Emma is Owed.” But Streep also made a point of blasting Walt Disney for his sexist and anti-Semitic stances. The edgy riff offered a different perspective on Disney from the sugarcoated hero played by Tom Hanks in “Saving Mr. Banks.” Streep was once rumored to be in the running for the role of P.L. Travers, although her remarks suggest why she might not have pursued the project. “Some of his associates reported that Walt Disney didn’t really like women,” Streep said, quoting esteemed animator Ward Kimball on his old boss: “He didn’t trust women or cats.” Streep talked about how Disney “supported an anti-Semitic industry lobbying group” and called him a “gender bigot.” She read a letter that his company wrote in 1938 to an aspiring female animator. It included the line, “Women do not do any of the creative work in connection with preparing the cartoons for the screen, as that task is performed entirely by young men.”

  • Frederik

    Dear visitors, there have been numerous comments regarding her speech and I have approved many of them – good and bad – shown in the comments section. I’ve taken the right to not publish those with harrassing language. Still, it doesn’t help to discuss who’s been worse as a person, it just drags away from the topic. Therefore, no further comments will be posted to this update. Thanks for your understanding.

  • Moishe Pippick

    There are many instances of bigotry in the history of the film industry and it is a positive every time someone like Meryl Streep calls them out. Walt Disney, however, was not one of those instances. He was the most progressive employer of women in the animation business and a proven friend of Jewish people.

  • Rebecca

    Why should she leave out of politics? It´s her opinion and I have the greatest respect for her to speak it out!

  • Tom Crossman

    Meryl’s comments about Walt Disney were not only tasteless, but completely ignorant. The anti semitic group he supported as Meryl says, had 20 other founders, 3 of whom were Jews : Victor Flemming, Cecil B Demille, and Ayn Rand.

    It was an anti communism group, and when Walt Disney disowned them, the 3 Jewish members did too, I suspect.

    Meryl should really look into things before making such horrible pronouncements about someone who’s been dead for 50 years.

    The person filled with hatred is certainly not Walt Disney…

  • Michael Garfield

    I have every film that Meryl has ever made, along with hundreds of photos, CDs and the like that feature her work, as well as seeing her work on stage. I’m a big fan believe me, yet she is totally wrong on this occasion. Walt Disney employed women in prominent positions, for instance – and quoting Ezra Pound was something of an own goal, given that he was well known for his anti-Semitism, as is Emma Thomson.

    Do what you do best: act. Leave out the politics.

  • D Nielson

    Meryl Streep is one of my favorite actresses, but ripping on Walt Disney was not classy. I’m a little disappointed with her behavior. I hope this does not effect the publicity for Into thee woods next year.

  • Harry

    I personally think that her speech is brilliant. Meryl is not afraid to speak her mind. I love her for that!

  • Luz

    Love Emma, she´s unique, she deserves every award she gets

  • a

    Taste has something, to do with class, talent also and autentic empaty shown in films.

  • Rose

    What she did is not what I consider bashing! Speaking out against discrimination is in fact a class act (my personal opinion).
    Disney here serves as an example for those who continue to discriminate against women, Jews, colored people etc. in Hollywood and elsewhere. I am quite certain that Meryl Streep has made her own experiences of that kind – early on in her career, especially – and knows what she is talking about.

    Personally, I don’t just love her for her splendid acting skills but also for her magnificent character. She’s warm, caring, courageous, full of empathy and it shows!

  • Sonja

    I love her, really and maybe she’s right but… I wish she has not said that.
    Not with Into the Woods coming out next year….. *sigh*

  • Rebecca

    For me, it doesn´t matter anymore, if she´s nominated for an Award. She is a great actress and I love her films and they make me forget my daily routine!

  • Laura

    Go Meryl!

    And how stunning is she? If I look half as good as her when I’m her age, I’ll be very happy!

  • Trailmarker

    I love Meryl, but bashing a long dead man is a little classless.