In a typically crowded field of contenders for Best Actress, Lady Gaga has been a favorite throughout the season, for her turn in A Star is Born. But tonight at the Golden Globes—one of many Oscar precursors—Glenn Close stole the show. A six-time Oscar nominee, Close was recognized as Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Drama, for her role in The Wife, an adaptation of Meg Wolitzer’s novel of the same name. In the film from Björn Rung, she plays a woman questioning the choices she’s made in her life, and so appropriately, as the actress took to the stage, she reflected on her own. “When I was little, I felt like Muhammad Ali, who was destined to be a boxer. I felt destined to be an actress, and here I am today,” she said. ” I will have been 45 years, in September, a working actress, and I cannot imagine a more wonderful life.”
Taking on the part of a woman who sublimates her needs and desires to those of her narcissistic husband, Close thought of her mother, who had her own path, and her own marital challenges to face. “In her 80’s she said to me, ‘I feel I haven’t accomplished anything,'” the actress recalled, “and that’s so not right.”
In her speech, Close noted that The Wife took 14 years to get made, despite the strong story at its core. “It was called The Wife,” she joked. “I think that’s why.” Wrapping up, she touched on the importance of dreaming, and of pursuing higher aims—for women, and for all people. “We have to find personal fulfillment,” she exclaimed, to an impassioned crowd. “We have to say, ‘I can do that, and I should be allowed to do that.'”
Racking up 13 Golden Globe nominations in her storied career, Close won tonight for the third time, beating out the likes of Gaga, Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), Nicole Kidman (Destroyer), and Rosamund Pike (A Private War). And just like that, predictions for this years’ Oscars aren’t so easy to make, in the Actress category and beyond. Apart from her win tonight, Close has indeed had a strong season, racking up kudos at the SAG Awards, the Critics’ Choice Awards and more. At the February show, the vet will likely compete with several of tonight’s esteemed also-rans. Possible entrants also include Olivia Colman (a winner tonight for Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy) and Roma‘s Yalitza Aparicio, and on January 22, this picture will become at least a bit clearer, as the nominees for the upcoming Oscars are announced.
Watch the speech above.