Decked out in a frizzy afro wig and suede jacket, a typically freewheeling Cher introduced son Chaz Bono at the 23rd Annual GLAAD Media Awards in L.A. last night, where Bono was picking up the Stephen F. Kolzak Award. “I don’t have anything prepared—I’m so nervous because my pronouns for my child jump all over the fucking place,” the legendary pop diva joked with the crowd before getting a little sentimental: “Chaz has the most courage of almost anyone I know. The other day I was having a big meltdown and Chaz said, ‘Are you going to come to the [GLAAD Media Awards],’ and I went ‘Chaz, you know, I’m not doing well right now’ and… he texted me and said ‘I turned into a very understanding, smart man and you can call on me.’ And it made me feel so good, like I could lean on someone. It touched my heart.”
In his accepting the award, given to an openly LGBT personality who has worked toward eliminating homophobia or transphobia, Bono thanked GLAAD for teaching him to see the media as “the greatest activist tool that we have at our disposal.”
He also credited the group for helping him weather a few media storms: “From when it first came out that I was transitioning, GLAAD was right there, out front in the media. And really everything that I’ve done since then, they have been a partner for me to be able to go to when Million Moms is coming out against me or Keith Ablow is telling people that me being on Dancing with the Stars is somehow going to be damaging to children. They have really been a partner for me all the way.”
Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson, who helped create the youth-oriented Straight But Not Narrow campaign, received the Vanguard Award from Benicio del Toro, who directed the young star in the short film “7 Days in Havana.”
Speaking of Straight But Not Narrow, Hutcherson said, “We wanted to create a place where straight people felt safe coming out and saying ‘It’s okay to be gay.’ And I didn’t know one, so we decided we were going to make one and we have. It’s gaining momentum and it means the world to me.”
Other celebrities at the star-studded affair include including Ellen DeGeneres, Betty White (Hot in Cleveland), Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family), Kim Wayans (Pariah), Sara Gilbert, singer Jason Mraz, Max Adler and Grant Gustin (Glee), Miriam Shor (GCB); Kat Graham (The Vampire Diaries); Trevor Donovan (90210), Perez Hilton, Gilles Marini (Switched at Birth), Guillermo Diaz (Scandal); Milla Jovovich, Ali Larter (Heroes), Real Housewives’ Kyle Richards and Lisa Vanderpump, drag legend Lady Bunny, Raven (RuPaul’s Drag U); Reza Farahan (Shahs of Sunset) and Madison Hildebrand (Million Dollar Listing).
The following is a complete list of GLAAD Media Award recipients announced Saturday in Los Angeles.
* Stephen F. Kolzak Award: Chaz Bono
* Vanguard Award: Josh Hutcherson
* Outstanding Film – Wide Release: Beginners (Focus Features)
* Outstanding Documentary: Becoming Chaz (OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network)
* Outstanding Comedy Series: Modern Family (ABC)
* Outstanding Individual Episode: TIE: “Prom” Drop Dead Diva (Lifetime) and “Beards” Hot in Cleveland (TV Land)
Check back soon for party photos, quotes, news and more from the gala!