America Ferrera, Eva Longoria, Greta Lee, Yara Shahidi, Celine Song and Linda Yvette Chávez will be feted at the 2023 WIF Honors.
The annual benefit will be held on Thursday, Nov. 30, in Los Angeles, as WIF (formerly known as Women in Film, Los Angeles), celebrates 50 years of working for gender equity in Hollywood. There, Jane Fonda will present Ferrera with the Jane Fonda Humanitarian Award, while the filmmaking duos of Longoria and Chávez (“Flamin’ Hot”) and Lee and Song (“Past Lives”) accept the Crystal Award for Advocacy. Shahidi is set to be honored with the Max Mara Face of the Future Award.
“The work of this year’s honorees exemplifies outstanding creative vision and the change WIF has worked to create in its 50 years as an organization,” said WIF Honors committee co-chairs Monica Levinson and Talitha Watkins. “Our industry is better because of these women and their commitment to spurring lasting impact in Hollywood, both in front of and behind the scenes.”
Regarding the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike, a release noted that WIF worked directly with the guild to “ensure this year’s event adheres to strike guidelines and is sensitive to striking workers, their unions, and their allies, while still celebrating outstanding contributions to advocacy and collaboration that moves the needle towards gender equity in our industry.”
Fonda, for whom WIF’s humanitarian award was renamed in 2021, personally selected Ferrera as this year’s honoree, saluting her for her longtime activism. The “Ugly Betty” Emmy winner and “Barbie” star is one of the co-founders of Poderistas, a nonprofit launched to inform, affirm, and inspire Latinas to leverage their power and transform their lives, their community and their nation; in 2016, following the presidential election, Ferrera also launched Harness, a community of artists, influencers and grassroots leaders who aim to leverage art and storytelling to power change and create a more equitable world.
The Crystal Award for Advocacy pairs will sit in conversation during the ceremony, with their partnerships described as “a demonstration of what we can accomplish together when we make films by women.” Longoria is saluted for her 20-year career, both in front of and behind the camera as a producer and director, including her recent collaboration with “Flamin’ Hot” screenwriter Chávez. Lee is honored alongside playwright and filmmaker Song for their collaboration on the critically acclaimed A24 film “Past Lives,” which has established itself as an early awards season contender.
Shahidi’s Face of the Future honor — presented by Max Mara, which returns to sponsor the awards for a 20th year — recognizes both her acting and producing work (including “Black-ish,” “Grown-ish” and “Sitting in Bars with Cake”), as well as her fight for inclusivity and equity in the industry and beyond.
“This year’s honorees show the strength and power of collaboration, inclusion, and how uplifting stories that have gone untold for too long make this industry better,” said WIF CEO Kirsten Schaffer. “With our industry in a moment of upheaval, which too often disproportionately impacts women and people of color, we need these women leading the way now more than ever, as we continue to fight for gender equity. WIF is grateful to shine a light on these formidable honorees as we celebrate our 50th anniversary.”
The 2023 WIF Honors is designed and produced by Anchor Street Collective’s Carleen Cappelletti; additional presenters and participating talent will be announced in the coming weeks, with tickets available for sale at womeninfilm.org. Joining Levinson and Watkins on the WIF Honors committee are Eryn Brown, Esther Chang, Michelle Lee, Tracy McNight and Ida Ziniti.