- LOS ANGELES
The Costume Designers Guild has announced that Academy Award-winner Charlize Theron will be honored with the Spotlight Award, Academy Award-winning screenwriter, director and producer Adam McKay will be bestowed the Distinguished Collaborator Award, and Mary Ellen Fields, former owner of Bill Hargate Costumes, will receive the Distinguished Service Award at the 22nd CDGA (Costume Designers Guild Awards). The annual gala will take place on January 28, 2020 at The Beverly Hilton. The awards ceremony celebrates excellence in film, television, and short form Costume Design.
Theron, McKay and Fields join Michael Kaplan, who as previously announced, will receive this year’s Career Achievement Award from J.J. Abrams. Nominees for the 22nd CDGA will be announced on December 10, 2019. Additional talent participants will be announced in the coming weeks.
“Charlize Theron is a costume designer’s dream, bringing integrity and style to every character she embodies, including her roles in Long Shot and Bombshell this year. Adam McKay is a visionary and one of the best storytellers of our time regardless of cast, genre, or platform, and the diversity of his body of work is astounding. Mary Ellen Fields is a much-loved member of the costume design community and is known for having magic fingers. So many of the pieces she has built over the years—from gowns to superhero costumes—are unspeakably beautiful. We are thrilled to honor these icons for their respect of and contributions to the art of costume design.” said Salvador Perez, president of the Costume Designers Guild.
The Spotlight Award honors an actor whose talent and career personify an enduring commitment to excellence, including a special awareness of the role and importance of costume design. Past recipients of the Spotlight Award include Glenn Close, Kerry Washington, Cate Blanchett, Naomi Watts, Amy Adams, Anne Hathaway and Halle Berry. During her career, Theron has worked esteemed costume designers including Colleen Atwood (Bombshell, The Huntsman: Winter’s War, Snow White and the Huntsman, That Thing You Do!), Jenny Beavan (Mad Max: Fury Road), Aieisha Li (Monster), Judianna Makovsky (The Devil’s Advocate, The Legend of Bagger Vance), Mary E. Vogt (Long Shot) and Michael Kaplan (Trapped).
Over the years, Theron has appeared in numerous films including The Devil’s Advocate, The Cider House Rules, the critically acclaimed Monster for which she earned an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and an Independent Spirit Award, North Country for which she was nominated for an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and a Critics Choice Award, Hancock, Young Adult for which she garnered a Golden Globe nomination, HBO’s The Life and Death of Peter Sellers for which she received a Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild, and Emmy nominations, Snow White and the Huntsman, A Million Ways to Die in the West, Mad Max: Fury Road, Dark Places, Kubo and the Two Strings and The Fate of The Furious. In addition to her acting success and principal involvement with her production company Denver & Delilah, Theron serves as a United Nations Messenger of Peace and founder of the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project (CTAOP).
The Distinguished Collaborator Award honors individuals who demonstrate unwavering support of costume design and creative partnerships with costume designers. Past recipients include Ryan Murphy, Meryl Streep, Quentin Tarantino, Guillermo Del Toro, Lorne Michaels, Helen Mirren, Judd Apatow, Clint Eastwood, Rob Marshall, and James Burrows.
McKay, known for his work across film, television and podcasts, most recently wrote, directed and produced the subversive dramedy Vice, which went on to receive eight Academy Award nominations, six Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations, and a DGA nomination for McKay. In 2015, McKay and Charles Randolph adapted Michael Lewis’ The Big Short for which they won Best Adapted Screenplay at the Academy Awards, BAFTA, WGA and USC Scripter Awards. For television, McKay won the 2019 DGA Award for Drama Series for Succession, which he executive produces. Upcoming TV projects include the HBO pilot, based on Jeff Pearlman’s non-fiction book "Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s" and a limited series on Miami Herald investigative reporter Julie K. Brown’s upcoming book about Jeffrey Epstein. McKay made his name in the comedy world as a founding member of the Upright Citizens Brigade. In 1995, he and Will Ferrell started on the same day at Saturday Night Live, where he became head writer. They went on to work on many iconic movies with their unique absurdist style. McKay’s long-time costume designer, Susan Matheson, created the on-screen looks for most of his feature films including Vice, The Big Short, Step Brothers, and Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues.
Mary Ellen Fields
The Distinguished Service Award honors individuals whose specialties and talents contribute to the craft and art of Costume Design. Past recipients include Betty Pecha Madden, Maggie Schpak, Sharon Day, Lois DeArmond, Edwina Pellikka, and Mary Rose. As the head of Bill Hargate Costumes, Fields has collaborated with award-winning costume designers including Jeffrey Kurland, Ellen Mirojnick, Albert Wolsky, Julie Weiss, and many more. She is an inspiring person, ethically and politically, and she helped many designers get their start. She is a one of a kind, and for her team at Bill Hargate Costumes, she is more than an employer, she is a friend.
Hailing from eastern Wisconsin, she began her career constructing costumes for local college and theater companies. Following a decade as a jr. high teacher, Fields moved to Los Angeles where she met Bill Hargate and assumed the role of manager at Bill Hargate Costumes. They built a team of talented, highly skilled stitchers and cutters which gained a loyal group of film and television designers. Following Hargate’s death in 2003, Fields and her husband John carried on the business of introducing new team members to IA Local 705 and the teamwork that goes into making thousands of costumes for many more films, including the most recent Oscar winner, Black Panther.