Thank you to the Academy for this incredible honour. And thank you for my lungs for continuing to breathe in this moment.
Thank you to my fellow nominees in this category. Meryl, no hard feelings? Based on history, there is an excellent chance you will be nominated again. And again.
I could take the time to thank all of the wonderful people in my life who have gotten me to where I am, but if you are on that list you probably already know how much you matter to me. Plus, after Jacqueline Bisset won a Golden Globe they upped the volume on the cut-off music. So to save on time, I’ll get to the point. Because this award goes out to everyone who believes in me, but mostly it is for everyone who does not.
Thank you to my elementary school group of friends who, when I told them I was taking acting classes outside of school, asked me simply, “why?” Though I did not ask why you were taking dance, or why you were on a soccer team, or why you enjoy reading graphic novels in your spare time, your kind words of friendship meant so much to a young me who was still figuring herself out and was influenced heavily by the opinions of those around her.
Thank you to my high school guidance teacher for, when I said actor was my career choice, telling me that “it is always good to have a plan B.” Your encouragement as a support figure in grade nine stuck with me throughout my secondary education.
Thank you to my father on that one day a few years ago, while we were shooting hoops in the drive way, for answering my want to attend university for drama with, “well, you should make sure that you get a real degree.” And thank you to my mother the following year for encouragingly asking if I was more interested in pursuing English. But most of all, thank you to my parents for sticking with me and and realizing that I was for realzies and seeing that I am able to study theatre in university and can become an actor without turning into the uneducated bimbo hopeless wandering hippie that I felt like you had expected me to become. Sarcasm aside, I do thank you for believing in me now even though I haven’t always felt like you have.
Thank you to the crazy man at my grandfather’s funeral who’s name guiltlessly escapes me. Thank you for reminding me that I could fail and I could exhaust my options and that it could not work out. And thank you for not getting the joke when I replied with, “Well, I’m going to live on the streets.” Perhaps I will actually try that. I really appreciated your sensitivity towards me at an emotional time in my life.
Thank you to every friend, family member, stranger, and societal belief who has ever a) said, “wow that’s really interesting!” with such fakeness that I could see through too clearly, b) asked me for my backup plan before not waiting to hear about my main plan, c) explained in such detail to me how difficult of a profession acting is to get into as if I was completely unaware, d) looked surprised upon finding out that yes, I am still pursuing acting, e) thought at any time to yourself, “Marryl is batshit crazy and is doomed to a life of failure and rejection” even if you only thought it and never said this to me, or any/all of the above. Pursuing desires can be hard and it can be easy to feel dejected and hopeless, so I thank you all for contributing to the cause.
Thank you to myself in any time that I have ever thought that I cannot do this because acting is too hard to get into and there is no security and I could end up in a wake of failed attempts so I should give up now. Thank you for succumbing to the pressure of the opinions of those around me. Thank you, honestly, for keeping me grounded and for pushing me and making me so driven. Without you I would probably be a crazy diva who thinks she is infinitely better than everyone and couldn’t fail if she tried. That part is actually not sarcastic. I’m not a diva. I hope.
I thank you all so much for not believing in me, for not having faith, for reminding me of the struggles I am bound to face, for not letting it go to the point that I started to agree with you and give up, for thinking I can’t do it. Because it is very apparent from this golden naked man in my hand that I can and I will. And even though, for the time being, he is only an imagined figure in my life, he will become real. Why? Because the amount of faith I have in myself outweighs the lack of faith you all have in me. So thank you for being my negative conscience because you piss me the hell off so much that I am determined to slap you right in the face with the biggest “I told you so.”
*Cue perfectly timed cut-off music and sassy storm out*