Pose creator shares the stirring Emmys speech he never got to give: ‘We are unmatched’

Steven Canals attends the 2021 Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival - Special Preview Screening of "In The Heights" at TCL Chinese Theatre on June 04, 2021 in Hollywood, California.

Pose creator Steven Canals has shared the acceptance speech he would have given if the groundbreaking series took home an award at the 2021 Emmys.

Canals shared his acceptance speech on Instagram on Monday (20 September), just hours after Pose bowed out of the 2021 Emmys without any awards.

Writing on Instagram, Steven Canals said he was still proud of the final season of Pose. He went on to share the text of his planned speech, adding that it will “always hold true”.

“The reason I get to stand up here as an openly queer Afro-Latin person is because of my ancestors,” Canals would have said if he had made it up on stage at the Emmys.

“In 1969 the fight for trans and queer liberation reached a fever pitch, built on the backs of the women, who happened to be trans and lesbian. Who happened to be Black and Latina.

“And so I want to honour Marsha P Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, Miss Major, and Stormé DeLarverie. And that work continues today with Mj Rodgriguez, Dominique Jackson, Indya Moore, Hailie Sahar, Angelica Ross, Our Lady J and Janet Mock.”


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Canals’ speech continued: “Trans is beautiful. Non-binary is stunning. And to be queer is a gift. We LGBTQ+ people are cultural leaders, we are culture makers, WE ARE UNMATCHED!!

“Don’t let anyone tell you anything otherwise.”

Pose won critical acclaim and broke new ground during its three-season run

Canals shared his planned Emmys speech after Pose lost out in all of the major drama categories it was nominated in.

The trailblazing series consistently broke new ground for LGBT+ representation on screen. It had the largest number of trans actors ever seen in a television series, and it won praise for centring queer and trans stories.

There was widespread jubilation among fans when Mj Rodriguez was nominated for an Emmy for her acclaimed performance in the show’s final season, making her the first trans woman nominated in a lead acting category.

However, she ultimately lost out on the award to Olivia Colman, who was honoured for her final outing as Queen Elizabeth II in The Crown.

In the hours after the awards ceremony, the hashtag #EmmysSoWhite started trending on Twitter after white performers took home all of the major acting awards.

This was despite the fact that the 2021 Emmys had one of the most diverse sets of nominations in history, with 38 people of colour recognised in acting categories.