Janet Mock, legendary writer and creator of #GirlsLikeUs, had a moment at the premiere of Pose’s final season in New York City Thursday, per reports by Page Six and the Daily Beast. During a passionate speech to the audience, Mock apparently declared: “Fuck Hollywood. This makes you uncomfortable? It should. It should make you fucking shake in your motherfucking boots.”
I don’t know a better person.
According to the Daily Beast, the event was held at the Lincoln Center. Before Mock took the stage, the outlet reports that creator Ryan Murphy gave a “heartfelt” thank you to the writer, saying: “It is not lost on me that, as a cis man, my career and this story is built on the backs of Black and Afro-Latinx trans women who have told the best story of all. So thank you, especially, to the women of our show.” But when Mock took over, things took a turn, and instead of a canned speech, she seemed to speak her mind, finally.
Here’s an excerpt of her speech, per the Daily Beast: “This is what Pose taught me: I stand up taller in the world because of this show. I know that I matter because of this show. I have a voice because of this show.” She continued: “I was happy because I had to be happy. Because if I wasn’t happy the girls wouldn’t know that happiness is possible. I’m hurting y’all. I see injustice and it hurts me inside.” Mock revealed she was only paid $40,000 an episode, adding: “Do you know who the fuck I am?”
Page Six reports that Mock also said:
“It’s a show, but it means so much to everyone to ‘ensure that we enable black and brown trans women to make it’ because that sounds good. It makes you comfortable to talk like that because then I don’t scare you into facing the fucking truth. You all have stomped on us.”
Co-star Dominique Jackson, according to Page Six, shouted out: “Thank you for speaking for me!” Others, like Angelica Ross and Hailie Sahar, added “you are safe” and “We love you, Janet.”
Mock also said that she “fucked up” and “forgot who the fuck I was,” saying that “they want me to come up here and pretend. I don’t need Hollywood, honey. You know why? Because I’m fucking free.” Page Six also reports she apologized to fellow producer and writer Our Lady J, saying: “I tried to shrink you to make myself bigger. Why couldn’t I just love you?”
Elsewhere in her speech, sources told Page Six she apologized to boyfriend Bismark Curiel, who she admitted she had cheated on during the show’s production. “Angel, Angel. I’m not losing you. You hear me? You are f–king important to me. I don’t want to live in a house alone. I want you. You motherfucker. Right there. That’s who I want. I’m getting what’s mine.”
On Twitter, co-star Ross seemed to confirm the night’s events, tweeting: “My sister @janetmock left nothing unsaid. I love you girl. Thank you for advocating for yourself and for #girlslikeus.”
Needless to say, the speech was unprecedented in its candor and tone—qualities upon which Mock founded her career. Having read accounts of last night back and forth and up and down, I feel speechless. There isn’t another person in Hollywood who’s proven themselves gutsy enough to end what’s been called a historic television run with such genuine honesty to a room full of people like Ryan Murphy.
No weapon that is formed against Janet Mock shall prosper.