Selma Blair highlighted the need for greater representation of disability on screen while accepting the Equity in Entertainment award on Wednesday.
At The Hollywood Reporter’s Women in Entertainment Gala, held at the Fairmont Century City Hotel in Los Angeles, the 49-year-old gave an impassioned speech about inclusivity.
“By creating more inclusive content, telling stories that more authentically represent and include us all, being allies in our workspace, raising the bar for accessibility standards, living and working within the intersectionality of our collective human experience, we become worthy of the enormous access and influence we have,” she said.
The Cruel Intentions star was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2018. She documented her experience with the degenerative disease in the documentary Introducing, Selma Blair, and has since become a strong advocate for people with disabilities.
“My story is just one of many. Disability is not a distant monolith,” the actress continued. “It’s an intractable part of our common humanity. Everyone in this room knows the power of entertainment to create a sense of community. And it’s our responsibility, all of us in this room, to do so.
She encouraged A-list audiences to “seek out other stories, take the phone calls and hire other people with disabilities on and off camera.”
Blair also explained that it’s not about being the “right thing” to do, but rather “whatever project you’re working on, it will be better for you to have done it”.
The mother-of-one, who was introduced by her friend Michelle Pfeiffer before accepting the award, concluded by saying it was “an honor of my life to stand before you today and accept this prize in the name of all the women who will not make it”. make films about them but whose stories are important, whose life is vital.