Another historical win was seen at the 91st annual Academy Awards as Crescent City-based film production designer, Hannah Beachler, became the first African-American to be both nominated and win in the category for Best Production Design.
In an emotional speech, Beachler, who was recognized for her impeccable design work in the hit Marvel film Black Panther, thanked her co-workers, friends and family for their support, which she said "breathed life" into her designs.
After starting out her memorable speech by shouting out the Big East — "New Orleans, Ya Heard!" — she praised the famed director behind the record-breaking super hero film, Ryan Coogler.
"I stand here stronger than I was yesterday," she said. "I stand here with agency and self worth because of Ryan Coogler, who not only made me a better designer, a better storyteller, a better person, I stand here because of this man who offered me a different perspective of life, who offered me a safe space, whose patience gave me air. Thank you, Ryan. I love you."
She also recognized the film's amazing cast for their constant inspiration, both personally and professionally, and a late personal friend who she shared "supported her every day."
"I am stronger today because of this wonderful cast who everyday steps into this world and breathes life into it," she said. "I’m stronger because of a woman who supported me every day that I wanted to give up. This is for you, my friend, Carol Trivino. Rest in power. I’m stronger because of my family who supported me through the roughest of times. I pass this strength to everyone who come next, to keep going, to never give up, and when you think it’s impossible, take these words of advice from a very wise woman: 'I did my best, and my best is good enough.'"
Congratulations to Hannah Beachler for this incredible honor!
(Photo: VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images)