Call the Midwife's Emerald Fennell wins her first Oscar for Best Screenplay

Naomi Gordon
·2-min read
Photo credit: Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: Pool - Getty Images

Former Call the Midwife star Emerald Fennell has won her first Oscar, after receiving the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for her acclaimed feature debut Promising Young Woman.

The 35-year-old actress, writer and director - who played Nurse Patsy Mount in the beloved BBC period drama between 2013 and 2017 - became the first woman to win the award in 13 years. Fennell was also nominated for Best Director, and Best Picture for her powerful black comedy revenge thriller starring Carey Mulligan, who was Oscar-nominated for her performance in the movie.

She also confirmed that she was expecting her second child with her husband Chris Vernon. The couple welcomed their first child in 2019, just after Fennell finished shooting her film.

Photo credit: Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: Pool - Getty Images

Upon accepting her award from Oscar-winner Regina King, Fennell exclaimed: "He's so heavy and so cold..."

"They said write a speech and I didn't because I didn't think this would happen," she continued. "I'm going to be in trouble with Steven Soderbergh [Oscar-winning director, Oscar producer], I'm so sorry... The only speech I ever wrote was when I was 10 - it mainly thanks Morris from Saved by the Bell. Unfortunately he hasn't been as much of my life as I'd hope.

"I'm trying very hard not to cry, which is difficult as an English person, we don't cry ever... I want to thank Carey Mulligan for being not only the most talented person in the world, but also the kindest and funniest."

Photo credit: Handout - Getty Images
Photo credit: Handout - Getty Images

After thanking her mother and father, jewellery designers for Theo Fennell, her sister, fashion designer Coco, and husband Chris, she then joked about the arrival of her son, who she welcomed just after she finished making the film. "[Thank you] Our son, who did not arrive until a couple of weeks after shooting, thank God, I crossed my legs all the way through. Steven - I hope that was alright."

The star, who also plays Camilla Parker-Bowles in The Crown and directed season two of Killing Eve, looked elegant in a ruffled pink and green Gucci gown.

The Oscars was held in person for nominees and presenters in LA.

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