Marlee Matlin, Jean Smart and Zendaya among the artists to receive the Crystal Award

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Women in the cinema, Los Angeles put Marlee matlin, Siân Heder, Smart jeans, Hannah einbinder, Zendaya and Ashley Levinson as recipients of its 2021 Crystal Award, recognizing outstanding artists whose advocacy has helped expand the role of women in entertainment.

Matlin and Heder will be honored for “setting a new precedent in representation and accessibility in front of and behind the camera” on their coming-of-age drama Apple, CODA. Smart and Einbinder, the Emmy-nominated stars of HBO’s hit comedy series Max Hacks, will be recognized for her performances which highlight the issues WIF has worked to address for decades, particularly sexism, ageism and harassment in the entertainment industry. Then there is Zendaya and her production partner Levinson, who will be recognized for their disruption of “traditional unbalanced compensation and ownership systems”, having developed a shared equity model for their acclaimed Netflix feature film, Malcolm & Marie.

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The Crystal Award will be presented to these three pairs of collaborators during the first WIF Honors ceremony since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, which takes place at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles on October 6. The film and television duets were shortlisted for the Honorary Award by the WIF Honors Committee, chaired by Esther Chang, which is made up of Jamila Hunter, Michelle Lee, Monica Levinson, Talitha Watkins and Lauren Williams.

“We are delighted to honor a handful of many women in our industry who have taken on the unprecedented challenges of our time and created transformative and lasting impact and opportunities for the better, together,” said Chang.

“We honor these pairs of women with the Crystal Award to reflect the collective effort required to transform this industry into an industry that rewards equality and succeeds as it becomes more inclusive,” added the Executive Director of WIF, Kirsten Schaffer. “Even in the most difficult times, these women have taken steps forward towards a more ideal future.”

The WIF Honors and the Crystal Award have been awarded since 1977. The formerly named Crystal + Lucy Awards annual benefit supports WIF’s educational and philanthropic programs, as well as its advocacy for gender parity across the industry. . Artists recognized by WIF in past years include Julie Andrews, Maya Angelou, Angela Bassett, Cate Blanchett, Carol Burnett, Glenn Close, Geena Davis, Viola Davis, Ava DuVernay, Nora Ephron, Audrey Hepburn, Jodie Foster, Nicole Kidman , Brie Larson, Gwyneth Paltrow, Amy Poehler, Issa Rae, Meryl Streep, Barbra Streisand, Cicely Tyson and Kerry Washington, among others.

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