Jamie Lee Curtis weighs in on gender-neutral awards categories ‘as the mother of a trans daughter’

Jamie Lee Curtis hold Oscar statuette smiling, after winning Best Supporting Actress for Everything Everywhere All At Once.

Oscar winner Jamie Lee Curtis has reflected on the “complicated” question of gender-neutral awards categories.

Curtis had a huge night at the 2023 Oscars on Sunday night (12 March), winning her first Academy Award for her role as Deirdre in Everything Everywhere All At Once.

Backstage, with her golden statuette in hand, Curtis gave her two pence on one of the biggest topics of awards season – making gendered awards more inclusive.

It’s an issue close to Curtis’ heart considering she has a trans daughter, Ruby.

“Obviously I would like to see a lot more women be nominated so there is gender parity in all the areas and branches,” Curtis told reporters.

“I think we are getting there but we are not anywhere near there.”

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Curtis said the answer isn’t necessarily straightforward.

Ke Huy Quan (L), Michelle Yeoh, Brendan Fraser, Jamie Lee Curtis.
The winners of the four major acting awards. (Getty)

“Of course that inclusivity involves the bigger question which is, how do you include everyone when there are binary choices which is very difficult,” she added.

“As the mother of a trans daughter I completely understand that and yet to de-gender the category also, I’m concerned will diminish the opportunities for women which is also something I have been working hard to promote.

“So it is a complicated question but I think the most important thing is inclusivity and more women.”

The 2023 Oscars came under fire after not nominating a single woman for one of their already gender neutral categories, Best Director.

The BRIT Awards also faced backlash after it nominated all-male performers for its gender-neutral Best Artist category.

It’s a topic that’s been raised as more and more non-binary talent sweeps the industry. Breakout stars such as House of the Dragon‘s Emma D’Arcy and The Crown‘s Emma Corrin were both nominated under the female category at the Emmys and Golden Globes, despite their gender identity.

As for Jamie-Lee Curtis, she is continuing to show her amazing allyship to her daughter Ruby, who publicly came out as trans in 2021.

Ruby Guest, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Annie Guest
Ruby Guest, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Annie Guest at the Universal Pictures world premiere of “Halloween Ends” on October 11, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Tommaso Boddi/FilmMagic)

In October last year, the Freaky Friday actor opened up about her fears around the increasingly hostile environment for the trans community.

“I have a trans daughter,” she told Cadena SER Radio, “there are threats against her life just [for] her existence as a human being.

“There are people that want to annihilate her and people like her. The level of hatred… [It’s] as if we haven’t learned from fascism, [as if] we haven’t learned what the result of that is: The extermination of human beings. That is terrifying.

“Jamie Lee Curtis is scared and you should be too. And Jamie Lee Curtis has a voice and she’s trying to use it, and you should too.

“And that’s how we change things. We think about them, we learn about them and then we use our voices to bring attention to them and fight against them.”

The US is currently pushing forward swathes of anti-LGBTQ+ bills. In Tennessee, right-wing governor Bill Lee signed in a drag ban and legislation prohibiting gender-affirming healthcare for trans youth.

It is something Everything Everywhere All At Once director Daniel Scheinert spoke out against during his acceptance speech.

He thanked his parents, saying: “Specifically my mom and dad, thank you for not squashing my creativity when I was… dressing in drag as a kid which is a threat to nobody.”

Jamie Lee Curtis was part of a huge Oscars sweep for the absurdist comedy thriller, which also landed Best Actress (Michelle Yeoh), Best Supporting Actor (Ke Huy Quan), Best Directing (The Daniels), Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay and Best Film Editing