By Adele Auguste
The 67th annual Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony offered a night of firsts for minority actors and actresses as both Viola Davis and Peter Dinklage left the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles with high honors. Davis became the first African-American woman to win “Outstanding Leading Actress in a Drama Series” while Dinklage, a little person, won “Supporting Actor in a Drama.” Their respective wins, as well as those of other minority actors and actresses, show that as our society becomes more open, more roles will be given to minority actors. In winning, they showed the world that anyone can achieve their dreams despite their differences. They show others that their talent can outshine their differences; their differences don’t define who they are as a person.
The roles of minorities in the acting business have changed over the years. In the past, African-Americans were cast as nannies and supporting roles. For example, Viola Davis previously played a nanny in the movie “The Help.” She did so well in that movie that she won an award for her outstanding performance. She showed everyone that whatever role she is given she can commit to it and do it well.
In the past little people were cast in atypical roles or not at all. Peter Dinklage disproved the stereoypes and showed the world that he is able to play roles that other actors can play through his character Tyrion Lannister on “Game of Thrones”.
“[Dinklage] has been nominated five times for Outstanding Supporting Actor for his role as Tyrion Lannister on Game of Thrones and this was his second win in that category,” said Stacey Cole, a writer for Inquisitr News.
Overall, as our society becomes more inclusive of individuals that are different from us, they are going to be represented more on the television screen. People at home watch certain shows because they see the characters in themselves and they feel nice when they see they are represented in shows. As our society changes, the characters change as well so that our world today can be portrayed on the television. As more diversity is shown on the television, many more viewers will appeal to those type of shows because the viewers will see an accurate portrayal of our society.
This year at the Emmys, there were many well-deserved winners, but the largest win of the night was in the category of diversity. Minorities leaders were honored for their talents and, rather than choosing the typical shows to receive awards, new and refreshing programs were recognized. “Transparent” took home five awards, “Orange is the New Black” took home one award , and “American Crime” took home one award. Racial and gender diversity are being recognized, which shows that our society is becoming more accepting of individuals differences. Let’s see what next year’s Emmys has in store for us.