Jennifer Coolidge gets serious as she shows support for writers’ strike with Shakespeare quote

Jennifer Coolidge accepts her Comedic Genius award at the MTV Film and TV Awards.

Jennifer Coolidge said ‘workers’ rights’ as she threw support behind Hollywood’s writers’ strike while accepting her MTV Movie and TV Award on Sunday (7 May).

Coolidge, 61, most recently of “These gays are trying to murder me” fame, has won more than a dozen awards in the last year or so, including an Emmy and a Golden Globe.

While the actress is famously unserious when taking to the stage to collect her awards, her tone was slightly different while accepting the ‘Comedic Genius’ gong at the MTV ceremony.

Appearing via pre-recorded video due to the live event being shelved as a result of the writers’ strike, Coolidge began with one of her distinctive lines about why she was “thrilled” to receive the popcorn-shaped award.

“I’m sure you know this, well actually you probably don’t,” she said. “The reason why I’m so thrilled, it’s just ironic that this award would be made of my favourite food: popcorn.”

Then, shifting the mood a little, she pledged her support for the TV and film writers who are walking out of studios across the US in an attempt at striking a fair pay deal.

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“Almost all great comedy starts with great writers, and as a proud member of SAG [Screen Actors Guild], I stand here before you tonight side-by-side with my sisters and brothers from the WGA [Writers Guild of America], who are fighting for the rights of artists everywhere,” she continued.

The WGA, which is a combined union effort between the Writers Guild of America East and The Writers Guild of America West, is fighting for a base pay increase for writers, in addition to a revised deal on royalties received from streaming services.

Currently, writers for streaming services are paid a flat rate, despite shows receiving varying levels of success.

In a statement, the union explained that the streaming age is harming writers by creating a gig economy, while arguing that studio “mini rooms” are leading to shows and films being written with fewer writers or less time. 

While Legally Blonde star Coolidge earnestly shared her support for the writers on strike, she couldn’t help but lighten the mood just a little.

After making her serious point, she deflected to a quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet.

“I think of the words of Shakespeare where he once said, ‘The play is the thing.’ Well, I don’t want to put words in his mouth or anything, but I think what he really meant was: it’s everything,” she said.

Then, in the most Jennifer Coolidge move possible, she started to dance around the hotel room she was filming in as House of Pain’s “Jump Around” blasted in the background.

She also accepted the widely sought after ‘Most Frightened Performance’ award for her role as terrified rich woman Tanya McQoid in The White Lotus, declaring in her acceptance speech that she “would like to stay alive” in any other shows she does.

Shows including Grey’s Anatomy, Abbott Elementary and Queer Eye could all be potentially affected by the writer’s strike.

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