It was a case of third time’s a charm for Saoirse Ronan as she won Best Actress at Sunday night’s Golden Globes.
The Carlow actors’ win was not our only reason to celebrate as Martin McDonagh’s film, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri won four prizes at the 75th awards ceremony.
Saoirse, 23, had previously been nominated for an Oscar in 2008 for her role in Atonement and in 2016 for Brooklyn but it was for the female-directed Lady Bird that she finally took home a trophy.
After the awards ceremony, she described how the coming-of-age film created a role for her that never really existed before.
“There’s definitely a time where you’re trying to figure out what your role is and so I was moving into this next stage of going from a child actor to the role of a ‘grown-up’.
“The role of Lady Bird was not around back then and that was only a few years ago. So it’s an incredibly special thing to have a character like this exist, now, finally,” Ronan said.
As soon as she read the script for the film, written by Greta Gerwig, Saoirse knew she wanted to play Lady Bird.
“Until I read the script for Lady Bird, I had never encountered a female heroine who very much sees herself as a female heroine. In films, you rarely see young girls who love themselves. Lady Bird takes the self-confidence thing to a new level. She knows she’s going to be someone. And she has something to say, even if she doesn’t quite know what it is yet,” said the Bronx-born actress.
She also joined the line-up of actresses in wearing black to the awards, a symbol of solidarity against gender-based abuse in all industries and professions.
However, months previously, Saoirse had consulted her stylist Elizabeth Saltzman with a plan of her own.
“Saoirse and I had a conversation at the beginning of the season that should Lady Bird go the distance, we wanted to work with all females — female make-up, female hairstylists, female designers — and that we would never talk about it to anyone. It would be our fun secret, our empowering moment,” the stylist said.
Saoirse wore a Versace gown to the awards and had a male friend FaceTime her mother during the ceremony as she was unable to attend.
London-born writer and director Martin McDonagh also mentioned his mother in his acceptance speech as it was her birthday.
Born to Irish parents and holding both British and Irish citizenship, McDonagh at age 47 is somewhat used to the awards circuit after his 2008 film In Bruges won several gongs.
His latest movie, where a mother rents out three billboards in her small town to post an ad asking the local police chief what he has done to solve the rape and murder of her daughter, was the big winner at Sunday night’s awards.
Three Billboards won Best Motion Picture (Drama), Best Screenplay and two awards for the leading cast, Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell who picked up gongs for Best Actress (Drama) and Best Supporting Actor.
While Saoirse has been likened to Ireland’s Meryl Streep, both Ronan and McDonagh won ministerial approval yesterday, being congratulated on their wins by Culture Minister Josepha Madigan.
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