Outfest 2021: Octavia Spencer presented with James Schamus Ally Award on closing night
Spencer, who accepted via video, was a producer on festival short film selection Right to Try which screened on Saturday to a tremendous reaction from the audience at the DGA Theatre. The film follows casting director Jeffrey Drew on his journey living with HIV and participating in an experimental trial to help find a cure.
Spencer said in her speech: “I’m always a big fan of an unsung hero, which is why I responded so strongly to Jeffrey Drew’s story. It speaks to the kinds of stories I want to see on screen, celebrating everyday heroes with a true sense of purpose and hope. I feel humble to be acknowledged with this award. It’s important to stand with your friends and give them the same respect you want for yourself. It is also important to open hearts and minds through authentic storytelling. Good stories entertain while bringing change and providing hope.”