Steven Spielberg on Natalie Portman’s Best Director Quip at Golden Globes: ‘Watershed for Women’

“This is a pretty incredible year,” says Oscar-winning filmmaker

At Sunday’s Golden Globes, Natalie Portman called out the lack of female director nominees this year. Now male nominee Steven Spielberg has weighed in on the issue.

“There’s also a watershed happening right now, slowly, maybe not fast enough, for women directors,” Spielberg told Entertainment Tonight. “I mean you have Patty Jenkins. We have some amazing women that have come forward, you know ‘Mudbound’ and ‘Lady Bird.’ This is a pretty incredible year, and I think you’ll be seeing some nominations. I’m predicting at the Oscars this year for a woman director, if not several.”

While presenting the award for Best Director with Ron Howard on Sunday, Portman said, “Here are all the male nominees” before listing of the men in the category.

The category notably left out Greta Gerwig for directing “Lady Bird,” which won for Best Movie – Musical or Comedy. Gerwig recently won Best Director from the National Society of Film Critics.

Speilberg added to ET that the current climate for women directors is “powerful, a watershed for women, a watershed for men, who will learn to listen or those who have been listening.”

Only one woman has ever won the Best Director award in the Golden Globes’ 75-year history — Barbra Streisand for her 1984 film “Yentl,” which also won Best Picture that year.

The all-male nominees for the Best Director category included winner Guillermo del Toro for “The Shape of Water,” Martin McDonagh for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Christopher Nolan for “Dunkirk,” Ridley Scott for “All The Money in the World” and Spielberg for “The Post.”

Portman wore black in solidarity with the Time’s Up initiative, which has raised millions to go towards legal fees for survivors of sexual harassment and assault.