Some viewers think Emma Watson used her moment in the spotlight at the 2022 BAFTAs to subtly address J.K. Rowling.
Over the past few years, the Harry Potter author has come under fire for her controversial comments about the transgender community and gender identity. One of the latest tweets, which referred to a legislative bill on International Women's Day as "We Who Must Not Be Named Day," sparked backlash earlier this month. And after Emma graced the stage at the BAFTAs on March 13, a few online users couldn't help but assume that a few of her words were directed at J.K. herself.
During the awards ceremony, comedian Rebel Wilson introduced the Harry Potter actress, who was presenting an award, by saying that Emma "calls herself a feminist, but we all know she's a witch." And as Emma took the podium, she emphasized, "I'm here for all the witches."
Immediately after the on-camera moment, a few Twitter users praised Emma for her choice of words, with one person tweeting, "I love the shade Emma Watson just threw at JK Rowling at the BAFTAs." Another echoed the same sentiment, simply writing that "Emma Watson is a queen for this."
A third added that Emma is the "feminist that we should all aim to be, inclusive, supportive and refuses to step on those more oppressed."
Although it may have been subtle, fans have good reason to think that Emma might have been calling out the author. In June 2020, she stated that "Trans people are who they say they are and deserve to live their lives without being constantly questioned or told they aren't who they say they are."
"Transgender women are women," he wrote in blog post published by The Trevor Project in July 2020. "Any statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter."
He continued, "It's clear that we need to do more to support transgender and nonbinary people," the actor wrote, "not invalidate their identities, and not cause further harm."
E! News has reached out to J.K.'s reps for comment.