Actor David Harbour received a standing ovation at the 2017 Screen Actors Guild Awards Sunday for a fiery speech about actors' obligation to stand up to bullies and fight back against monsters, like the heroes in his hit show, "Stranger Things."
Its cast won a SAG award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, and Harbour, who plays detective Jim Hopper in the Netflix series, took the stage along with Winona Ryder and the rest of the actors to accept the award.
After thanking Netflix, Harbour went on to say, "And I would like to say that in light of all that's going on in the world today, it's difficult to celebrate the already celebrated 'Stranger Things,' but this award from you, who take your craft seriously and earnestly believe, like me, that great acting can change the world, is a call to arms from our fellow craftsmen and -women to go deeper and, through our art, to battle against fear, self-centeredness, exclusivity of our predominantly narcissistic culture; craft and cultivate a more empathetic and understanding society by revealing intimate truths that serve as a forceful reminder to folks that when they feel broken and afraid and tired, they are not alone. We are united in that we are all human beings and we are all together on this horrible, painful, joyous, exciting and mysterious ride that is being alive."
The speech then continued to build as stars like Taraji P. Henson, of "Hidden Figures" and "Empire," started to cheer him on.
Harbour continued, "Now as we act and the continuing narrative of 'Stranger Things,' we 1983 mid-westerners will repel bullies. We will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no hope. We will get past the lies. We will hunt monsters and when we are at a loss amidst the hypocrisy and casual violence of certain individuals and institutions, we will, as per chief Jim Hopper, punch some people in the face when they seek to destroy the weak and the disenfranchised and the marginalized and we will do it all with soul, heart and with joy."
By the end of the speech, the entire SAG Awards audience was on their feet, including "People vs. O.J. Simpson" star Courtney B. Vance, who looked amazed by Harbour.
Harbour concluded his speech by saying, "We thank you for this responsibility. Thank you."
It was one of the most impassioned political remarks at a remarkably political SAG Award ceremony, amid backlash over President Donald Trump's ban on refugees and travelers from seven Middle Eastern countries.