Stranger Things actor delivers huge anti-Trump speech – and Winona Ryder's reaction is priceless
Hollywood took the opportunnity to speak out at the SAG Awards against the US President’s latest executive order
Yesterday evening was the night of the Screen Actors’ Guild Awards, and in a week of torrid American politics that saw President Donald Trump ban citizens of certain countries from travelling to the US, the stars were in a protesting mood.
The night’s awards (which saw big wins for The Crown, Fences and Stranger Things) were dominated by speeches denouncing the so-called Muslim ban, with Stranger Things star David Harbour reading out a barnstorming speech promising to “punch some people in the face” that drew a standing ovation from the crowd…and some truly brilliant facial expressions from co-star Winona Ryder.
And he was far from the only actor to speak out, with host Ashton Kutcher opening the awards with a welcome to those struggling to travel to America after Trump’s executive order.
“Good evening, fellow SAG-AFTRA members, and everyone at home, and everyone in airports that belong in my America,” he said. “You are a part of the fabric of who we are. And we love you and we welcome you.”
Later, Moonlight’s Mahershala Ali continued the theme when he accepted his Best Supporting Actor nomination, delivering an emotional speech where he said that “we see what happens when you persecute people – they fold into themselves.”
Fellow winners Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Taraji P. Henson also used their platform to address the week’s developments, with Louis-Dreyfus saying the travel ban was an “un-American” “blemish” and Henson paying tribute to the real-life women who inspired her space race period film Hidden Figures with some pointed comments.
"This story is about unity," said Henson, who stars alongside Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae in Hidden Figures. "This story is about what happens when we put our differences aside and we come together as a human race. We win. Love wins. Every time."
Accepting the ensemble comedy award for Orange is the New Black, star Taylor Schilling added: "We stand up here representing a diverse group of people, representing generations of families who have sought a better life here from places like Nigeria, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Colombia, Ireland.
"And we know that it's going to be up to us and all you, probably, to keep telling stories that show what unites us is stronger than the forces that divide us."
And it wasn’t just winners making their voices heard, with Florence Foster Jenkins and Big Bang Theory star Simon Helberg carrying a “Refugees Welcome” sign while his wife Jocelyn Towne wrote “Let Them In” across her chest, and Scandal’s Kerry Washington wearing a safety pin on her dress in solidarity with those displaced by the travel ban.
Overall, then, it was a night of surprises – with some of those extending to the winners chosen by the Screen Actors’ Guild, as sure-fire favourites Downton Abbey, Casey Affleck and Game of Thrones were overlooked. You can see the full list of winners below.
Motion Picture Awards
Outstanding performance by an actor in a leading role
Casey Affleck - "Manchester by the Sea"
Andrew Garfield - "Hacksaw Ridge"
Ryan Gosling - "La La Land"
Viggo Mortensen - "Captain Fantastic"
Denzel Washington - "Fences" *WINNER
Outstanding performance by an actress in a leading role
Amy Adams - "Arrival"
Emily Blunt - "The Girl on the Train"
Natalie Portman - "Jackie"
Emma Stone - "La La Land" *WINNER
Meryl Streep - "Florence Foster Jenkins"
Outstanding performance by a male actor in a supporting role
Mahershala Ali - "Moonlight" *WINNER
Jeff Bridges - "Hell or High Water"
Lucas Hedges - "Manchester by the Sea"
Dev Patel - "Lion"
Hugh Grant - "Florence Foster Jenkins"
Outstanding performance by a female actor in a supporting role
Viola Davis - "Fences" *WINNER
Naomie Harris - "Moonlight"
Nicole Kidman - "Lion"
Octavia Spencer - "Hidden Figures"
Michelle Williams - "Manchester by the Sea"
Outstanding performance by a cast in a theatrical motion picture
"Hidden Figures" *WINNER
"Manchester by the Sea"
Outstanding action performance by a stunt ensemble in a motion picture
"Captain America: Civil War"
"Hacksaw Ridge" *WINNER
Outstanding performance by a male actor in a television movie or miniseries
Riz Ahmed - "The Night Of"
Sterling K. Brown - "The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story"
Bryan Cranston - "All the Way" *WINNER
John Turturro - "The Night Of"
Courtney B. Vance - "The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story"
Outstanding performance by a female actor in a television movie or miniseries
Bryce Dallas Howard - "Black Mirror"
Felicity Huffman - "American Crime"
Audra McDonald - "Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill"
Sarah Paulson - "The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story" *WINNER
Kerry Washington - "Confirmation"
Outstanding performance by a male actor in a drama series
Sterling K. Brown - "This is Us"
Peter Dinklage - "Game of Thrones"
John Lithgow - "The Crown" * WINNER
Rami Malek - "Mr. Robot"
Kevin Spacey - "House of Cards"
Outstanding performance by a female actor in a drama series
Millie Bobby Brown - "Stranger Things"
Claire Foy - "The Crown" *WINNER
Thandie Newton - "Westworld"
Winona Ryder - "Stranger Things"
Robin Wright - "House of Cards"
Outstanding performance by a male actor in a comedy series
Anthony Anderson - "Black-ish"
Tituss Burgess - "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt"
Ty Burrell - "Modern Family"
William H. Macy - "Shameless" *WINNER
Jeffrey Tambor - "Transparent"
Outstanding performance by a female actor in a comedy series
Uzo Aduba - "Orange is the New Black"
Jane Fonda - "Grace and Frankie"
Ellie Kemper - "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt"
Julia Louis-Dreyfus - "Veep" *WINNER
Lily Tomlin - "Grace and Frankie"
Outstanding performance by an ensemble in a drama series
"Game of Thrones"
"Stranger Things" *WINNER
Outstanding performance by an ensemble in a comedy series
"The Big Bang Theory"
"Orange is the New Black" *WINNER
Outstanding action performance by a stunt ensemble in a television series
"Game of Thrones" *WINNER
"The Walking Dead"
Lifetime Achievement Award