Margot Robbie, the acclaimed actress of “Barbie,” took the stage at the 2024 Critics Choice Awards to present the prestigious SeeHer Award to America Ferrera. Robbie, 33, delivered a touching speech highlighting Ferrera’s significant contributions to the film and television industry, particularly her dedication to telling stories about complex women. Notably, Robbie praised Ferrera as the “first and only” Latina to win the Emmy for lead actress in a comedy for her role in Ugly Betty.
In her heartfelt introduction, Robbie expressed admiration for Ferrera’s resilience and honesty, stating, “What I admire the most about America is how she has handled that pressure while never being afraid to continue to speak the truth when it counts the most.”
Upon taking the stage, Ferrera delivered a passionate speech, expressing the deep significance of receiving the SeeHer Award, especially considering her roots. She shared her longing to see people like herself portrayed as fully dimensional characters on screen over 20 years ago, emphasizing the seemingly impossible journey. Ferrera credited writers, producers, and directors for helping bring fierce and fantastic Latina characters to life, allowing her and her colleagues to flourish in their careers.
Ferrera’s impactful words resonated with the audience, with glimpses of emotion from attendees like Brie Larson, who appeared to tear up during the speech, and Taraji P. Henson, who nodded along in agreement. The actress also dedicated part of her speech to Barbie director Greta Gerwig, acknowledging her remarkable filmmaking skills in proving that women’s stories can achieve cinematic greatness and box office success simultaneously.
Expressing gratitude to those who supported women’s work, Ferrera extended appreciation to Barbie’s Kens, including Noah Baumbach and Ryan Gosling, playfully calling them all “Kenough.” She concluded her speech with a special acknowledgment to her husband, Ryan Piers Williams, expressing love for his unwavering belief in her dreams.
The SeeHer Award, established in 2017, honors leading ladies in the film industry who advocate for gender equality and portray authentic, boundary-pushing characters. Previous recipients include Viola Davis, Zendaya, Halle Berry, and Janelle Monáe.
Apart from her acting career, Ferrera co-launched the digital lifestyle community Poderistas, aimed at uplifting Latina women to inspire positive change. Ferrera’s activism extends to public speaking engagements, covering significant events like TED, the DNC, March for Our Lives, and various television documentaries.
In the critically acclaimed film Barbie, Ferrera’s character, Gloria, delivers a powerful and emotionally charged speech that stands as one of the movie’s keystone moments. The scene, which Ferrera ran “probably 30 to 50” times, moved on-set crew members to tears, showcasing the actress’s remarkable talent.