Ruth E. Carter becomes first Black woman to win two Oscars


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Ruth E. Carter made history at the Oscars when she became the first Black woman to win her second Academy Award. 

Carter, 62, took home the Oscar for best costume design for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.” She had previously won an Oscar for best costume design for the first Black Panther movie in 2019.

In her acceptance speech Sunday night, she dedicated the victory to her late mother, Mabel Carter, who died recently, and called upon late actor Chadwick Boseman to look after her. 

“Thank you to the Academy for recognizing the superhero that is a Black woman. She endures. She loves. She overcomes. She is every woman in this film. She is my mother. This past week Mabel Carter became an ancestor. This film prepared me for this moment. Chadwick, please take care of mom.” 

Following her speech, she further reflected on her win and her place in history as the first Black woman to win two Oscars in the 95-year history of the award show. 

“I wanted to be a costume designer,” she told reporters. “I studied. I scraped. I dealt with adversity in the industry that sometimes didn’t look like me and I endured. I feel that this win opens the door for other young costume designers that may not think that this industry is for them and hopefully they’ll see me, and they’ll see my story and they’ll think they can win an Oscar, too.” 

95th Annual Academy Awards - Press Room
Ruth E. Carter, winner of the Oscar for Best Costume Design for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” poses at the 95th Annual Academy Awards.

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Carter has also been nominated for “Malcolm X” in 1992 and “Amistad” in 1997. She joins four other Black winners who have at least two Oscars — a list that includes actors Denzel Washington and Mahershala Ali and audio engineers Willie D. Burton and Russell Williams II.

Sunday night’s Academy Awards also featured a history-making win for Michelle Yeoh, who became the first actress of Southeast Asian descent to win the Academy Award for best actress. 


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