Sarah Polley first won over him Academy Award.
The Canadian film makerwho hails from Toronto, Ont., was awarded the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar Sunday night for his film, Woman Talking.
As she accepted her award, she joked that she was grateful to the Academy for not being offended by the words “woman” and “talking” together.
“First of all, I just want to thank The Academy for not offending me with the words ‘women’ and ‘conversation’ thrown together like that. Cheers,” he said.
He also mentioned fellow Canadian Miriam Toews, who wrote the 2018 novel of the same name, that inspired the film.
“Miriam Toews has written an important novel about a radical democracy where people who disagree on every single issue manage to sit together in a room and forge a way forward together without violence . They do this not only by talking but also by listening,” she added.
Polley’s feature film directorial debut Far from Him was also nominated in this category in 2008, but lost to Joel and Ethan Coen’s No Country For Old Men.
Based on a true story, Woman Talking explores a remote religious colony where older men use a series of excuses to explain away years of drugged sexual assaults on the girls and women of the group, leaving a many were pregnant or died.
When the men responsible for the attacks are caught and taken into custody, the women must decide whether to stay within the community or leave.
The story reflects similar events that took place in a Manitoba Mennonite Colony in Bolivia.
“We felt that we part of a movementnot a movie,” Polley said in an interview last year after the world premiere of Woman Talking.
“There is something important that we think is a conversation that should be part of our world, and we want to be part of it with every part of our being.”
In the male-dominated film industry, Polley said she’s grateful for the opportunity to work with so many talented women, but noted that people of all genders help bring the film conversation to the big screen.
“Everyone in the cast and crew came here in a generous spirit,” he said. “It’s not just women on set who want to bring those experiences of abuse and of feeling powerless, and of moving on and building a better life and hopefully a better world.”
Polley, who started out as a child actor and rose to become an acclaimed writer and director, competes against films Glass Onion: A Knife in Mystery, Life, Top Gun: Maverick and All Quiet on the Western Front.
Polley was also up for the Oscar for Best Picture for the same film.
Canadian filmmaker Sarah Polley in ‘Woman Talking’
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