Suranne Jones made quite the statement at the National Television Awards last night. Not only did she collect the award for Drama Performance for her role in Doctor Foster, but she campaigned for gender equality in the arts. The 39-year-old accessorised her red carpet suit with a 50/50 badge from Equal Representation for Actresses. Wearing the red and white badge on the lapel of her black jacket, which she wore over a ruffled pussybow shirt, every picture she posed for screamed for equal pay for actresses.
Speaking to press in the winners’ room, Suranne said: ‘I thought it was the right time to wear [the 50/50 badge] because I was going to be presenting. It was the right time with women on the rise. ‘It’s 50/50 equal representation for actresses but also it’s about equal and fair representation of women within the industry. ‘So it’s about the kind of stories we tell, the kind of parts… So that those stories are being told on screen and in the theatre and in film, and younger women can look up to those women.’ She continued: ‘So it is about gender but also the kind of roles we’re getting. The statistics I’ve been seeing are two to one male to female in adult actors, and three to one in boys to girls in young actors.
‘So I think we need to shake it up a bit and tell more inspirational stories. And it felt like the right time to do that.’ The 50/50 campaign from Equal Representation for Actresses aims to achieve 50:50 gender balance across our screens and stages by 2020, and has been supported in the past by James Nesbitt, Emma Thompson and Denise Gough. It was a good night for Suranne at the NTAs – as well as winning the Drama Performance award for playing Gemma Foster on the hit BBC series, Doctor Foster series two was named the best drama, beating Liar, Call The Midwife, Casualty, Call The Midwife and Game Of Thrones to the prize.