(PNS reporting from HOLLYWOOD) Something was missing on last night’s already barely diverse Oscars show:
Latina actress and icon Lupe Ontiveros was outrageously not included in the In Memoriam segment of the 2013 Oscars telecast, nor in the Oscars Web Gallery.
The veteran actress, who passed away in July, was missing from the annual segment when Hollywood’s own are remembered, if for only three seconds.
This reporter reached out to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences and spoke with longtime Academy member, film producer Irving Oldenwhyte.
Oldenwhyte was incredulous when I brought up the fact that Lupe Ontiveros was excluded. “Why would we put her in that segment? That’s for people in the talkies!” said Oldenwhyte.
When informed that Lupe Ontiveros had acted in dozens of films, including Selena, El Norte, As Good As It Gets, The Goonies and many more, including countless TV series, Oldenwhyte remained astonished. “She’s an actress? I thought she was a maid.”
Over the course of 35 years, Ontiveros indeed had portrayed maids and other domestic workers over 150 times by her own accounting. She took pride in portraying working-class women, but also wished for more complex and non-stereotypical roles.
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“In fact I was wondering if she could come in today, instead of her usual Wednesday, as I had a little Oscars after party last night,” said the 79-year-old retired producer.
I had to reiterate to Oldenwhyte that Ontiveros was deceased, and not an actual maid, but an actress. “A Latina actress in Hollywood, that’s novel! Now that would make an excellent movie.” the veteran retired producer sputtered excitedly.
“I bet you that kid Ben Affleck can play her.”
- RELATED: Lupe Ontiveros (1942-2012) RIP
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