Costume Designer Ruth Carter Becomes First Black Woman to Win 2 Oscars

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever costume designer Ruth Carter made history Sunday night, when she became the first Black woman to win two career Oscars.

Moments after Carter picked up the statuette for best costume design, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced on Twitter she had just broken a barrier.

The costumer took the stage wearing a strapless yellow gown with fuchsia lining, and paired the design with matching platform heels and braided hair.

Related Story: Oscars 2023 – Complete Winners List From Michelle Yeoh to Ruth Carter

Box office champion Black Panther: Wakanda Forever cast includes (L-R): Florence Kasumba as Ayo, Angela Bassett as Ramonda, Danai Gurira as Okoye Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2022 MARVEL.
Carter designed the stunning costumes in ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.’

“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,” Carter said in her acceptance speech.

She thanked director Ryan Coogler, and asked late Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman to look after her mother in the afterlife.

“This film prepared me for this moment,” she said referring to her mother’s death. “Chadwick, please take care of mom.”

Carter won her first Oscar for designing the costumes for Black Panther (2018).

The Massachusetts native graduated from Hampton University and got her start working for theater companies.

She later broke into the film industry on Spike Lee’s School Daze (1988) and Keenen Ivory Wayans’ I’m Gonna Git You Sucka (1988). Lee continued to collaborate with Carter and hired her to work on the costumes for his movies Do the Right Thing (1989), Mo’ Better Blues (1990), Jungle Fever (1991), Malcolm X (1992) and other projects.

Carter has since partnered with many other famous directors, including with Steven Spielberg on Amistad (1997), John Singleton on Four Brothers (2005); Lee Daniels on The Butler (2013), Ava DuVernay on Selma (2014), as well as Jerry Seinfeld for the Seinfeld pilot.

Watch Ruth Carter give her acceptance speech in the video below.