The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Patricia Arquette calls for wage, gender equality in show-stealing Oscar speech

You always want to roll your eyes when someone breaks out a piece of paper during their Oscar speech. But after Patricia Arquette thanked her cast members and family while picking up her Best Supporting Actress trophy for “Boyhood,” she suddenly switched gears and brought down the house with a booming call for wage equality.

“To every woman who gave birth, to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation, we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights,” she announced. “It is our time to have wage equality once and for all, and equal rights for women in the United States of America!”

Cut to this incredible reaction from Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lopez in the audience.

She continued the conversation backstage, reports The Post’s Geoff Edgers:

“It is time for us … We don’t have equal rights for Americans. The truth is even though we sort of feel like there is, there are huge issues that are at play and really do affect women.
It’s time for all the women in America, and the men who love women and all the gay people and people of color we’ve all fought for to fight for us now.”

Related: Full Oscars coverage

More Oscars coverage:

From Patricia Arquette's booming speech to an emotional performance of "Glory" from the film "Selma," here are the highlights from this year's Oscars. (Video: Nicki DeMarco/The Washington Post)

“Birdman” is the night’s big winner; Julianne Moore wins best actress; Eddie Redmayne best actor

Truth tellers: How accurate is “Selma”“The Theory of Everything?” “The Imitation Game”? “American Sniper”?

After 100 years, we still don’t know how to actually watch a movie

‘Birdman’ or ‘Boyhood’? Nobody knows how to guess the Oscars this year.

2015 Oscar nominations show a lack of diversity in a year when films didn’t

David Oyelowo of ‘Selma’ says Oscars only go to black actors in ‘subservient’ roles. Is he right?

What went wrong with the Oscar hopes for ‘Selma’?

Here’s how ‘American Sniper’ could have avoided its fake baby problem