Halle Berry ‘Heartbroken’ No Other Black Women Have Won the Academy Award for Best Actress, 20 Years After Her Historic Win

by Yah Yah

In the ABC News “Screen Queens Rising,” special, Halle Berry shared her disappointment more than two decades after her historic Oscar win.

In the special, Berry recalls becoming the first Black woman to win the Academy Award for Best Actress in 2002.

“For every nameless, faceless woman of color who now has a chance because this door has been opened tonight. You said that 20 years ago, has that come to fruition?” Berry is asked by T.J. Holmes.

“I’ve been asked this question so many times as if I should have the answer, but I don’t. But I will say this, I do feel completely heartbroken that there’s no other woman standing next to me in 20 years,” she responds. “I thought, like everybody else, that night meant a lot of things would change. That there would be other women. I thought I would have the script truck back up to my front door and I’d have an opportunity to play any role I wanted. That didn’t happen. No other woman is standing there.”

The special explores how Black actresses of Hollywood have become power brokers and pays tribute to the actresses and the roles that have opened doors for them and their peers.

However, Berry maintains a positive outlook. She says awards cannot be the only benchmark of one’s artistry nor their legacy.

“When I look around and I see my brothers and sisters working and thriving and telling their own stories from their point of view, I’m proud of that,” Berry says. “And I see the movement forward. And I think that night inspired so many of those people to dream those dreams.”

She adds, “I think we have to start to change our perspective because it’s clear that we may not change how the awards are handed out. But in lieu of changing that, what can we change? We can change our participation within the industry. We can change how hard we fight to tell our stories, the scripts we write.”


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