“Venus and Serena, you are such marvels. However, you do not play against the guys like I have to.”
The 67-year-old New Zealander took to the Critics Choice Awards stage to accept her award for Best Director, first beginning her speech by thanking her presenter, Taika Waititi, and praising the “incredible women” in the room. She also congratulated “the guys,” aka the male colleagues she was nominated alongside.
“Venus and Serena, you are such marvels,” she said. “However, you don’t play against the guys like I have to.”
While the comment elicited loud cheers in the room, it was obviously incredibly uncomfortable, as shown by Venus’s telling reaction to the awkward callout.
The clip of the speech circulated widely on social media, with many pointing out Campion’s privilege as a white woman, as well as the wholly unnecessary putting down of the Williams sisters, who have time and time again faced both racism and misogyny within the world of tennis and beyond.
Others mentioned that Campion has benefited from nepotism, something that neither Venus nor Serena had in their careers.
And just generally, Campion’s comments left a sour taste in people’s mouths, who found the comment to be a prime example of misogynoir.
As of now, Jane has yet to respond to the criticism, but we’ll make sure to update you if she does.