This year the Academy Awards were, once again, “so white.” The reason this was a problem was that people of color weren’t being represented in specific categories which meant that people of color wouldn’t win any type of award. However, most of the discussion was about how the black community wasn’t being represented. My issue is that every single other minority group was basically ignored during this discussion. The majority of people didn’t discuss how the Latino group and other minority groups also had no representation. I agree that the black community isn’t being represented and I agree that they should be but they aren’t the only ones that need to be represented. With terrible representations for people of color and white people taking roles meant for people of color it makes it extremely hard for people of color to be represented.
Due to the lack of Latinos who have made been recognized for their talent I want to use this article to acknowledge the Latino actors, actresses, directors, composers, and cinematographers who have won an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, a Primetime Emmy or all three.
The honor of being the first Hispanic actor to win an Academy Award belongs to Puerto Rican Jose Ferrer. He also was the first Hispanic actor to be nominated more than once. He won Best Actor in a Leading role in 1950 for Cyrano de Bergerac. Mexican-American Actor Anthony Quinn won Best Actor in a Supporting Role in 1952 for Viva Zapata! thus becoming the first Mexican actor to win an Oscar. He also won this category in 1956 for “Lust for Life“.
Javier Bardem, a Spanish actor, won an Oscar in 2008 for Best Supporting Actor in the film No Country for Old Men. Another Puerto Rican to win an Oscar was Benicio Del Toro who won Best Actor in a Supporting Role in 2000 for the film Traffic.
Emile Kuri, who was born in Mexico, was nominated for Best Art Direction eight times and won twice. He won for The Heiress (1949) and for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954). In 1995, Argentine painter and film set designer Eugenio Zanetti won Best Art Direction for Restoration.
Emmanuel Lubezki is a Mexican cinematographer who has been nominated in the category of Best Cinematography a total of eight times. He won for Gravity in 2014, Birdman in 2015, and this year, 2016, he won for the The Revenant. Another Mexican to win the award for Best Cinematography is Guillermo Navarro who won in 2006 for Pan’s Labyrinth.
Mexican production designer Eugenio Caballero and Spanish film set decorator and art director Pilar Revuelta won Best Art Direction for Pan’s Labyrinth in 2006. Chilean-born cinematographer Claudio Miranda won the award for Best Cinematography in 2012 for his work on Life of Pi.
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, a Mexican Director, has won Best Director a total of two times, the first in 2015 for Birdman and the second in 2016 for The Revenant. He became the third director to win this category back to back and the first Latino to do so. Alfonso Cuaron, a Mexican director, won both the Best Director and Best Film Editing awards for Gravity in 2014 after having been nominated in the categories of Best Film Editing, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Adapted Screenplay.
Luis Bacalov, an Argentinian-Italian composer, won the award for Best Music-Original Score for the film The Postman. Argentine composer, Gustavo Santaolalla won Best Music-Original Score in 2005 and 2006 for his work on Brokeback Mountain and Babel. Uruguayan musician Jorge Drexler won Best Music-Original Score in 2004 for The Motorcycle Diaries. He was the first Uruguayan to be nominated and the first Uruguayan to win an Academy Award.
Rita Moreno, a Puerto Rican actress, won Best Supporting Actress in 1961 for the film West Side Story. She was also the first Puerto Rican to be nominated for this category. In 2008, Spaniard actress Penelope Cruz won Best Supporting Actress for Vicky Cristina Barcelona becoming the first actress from Spain to be nominated and win this category. Another winner of the Best Supporting Actress category is Kenyan-Mexican actress Lupita Nyong’o for her role in 12 Years A Slave in 2014. Brigitte Broch, a German-born Mexican, won Best Art Direction in 2001 for Moulin Rouge!. Mexican make-up artist Beatrice De Alba won Best Makeup in 2002 for her work on Frida.
Counting up all these Latinos results in a total of 21 Latinos who have won an Academy Award in the categories of Best Art Direction, Best Director, Best Actor in a Leading Role, Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Best Music-Original Score, Best Film Editing, Best Cinematography and Best Makeup.
For a look at Latino/as who have been nominated for an Academy Award click here.
Rita Moreno, the Puerto Rican actress, won a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress for West Side Story for her role as Anita in 1961. Luis Puenzo, an Argentine director, won a Golden Globe in 1985 for the film The Official Story.
Edward James Olmos, a Mexican actor, has won two Golden Globes. The first in 1986 in the category of Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television for his role in Miami Vice and he won the same award again in 1995 for his role in The Burning Season.
In 1990, Cuban actor Andy Garcia won a Globe for the category of Best Supporting Actor for the film The Godfather Part III for his role as Vincent Mancini. Nuyorican actor Jimmy Smits won a Globe for Best Actor in a TV Drama Series for his role as Bobby Simone on the show NYPD Blue.
Pedro Almodovar, a Spanish screenwriter, producer, and director, has won two Golden Globes in the Best Foreign Language Film category. One in 1999 for All About My Mother and another in 2002 for Talk to Her. Benicio Del Toro won a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Traffic (the film which also earned him an Oscar.)
Alejandro Amenabar, a Spanish-Chilean director, won a Golden Globe in 2004 in the category of Best Foreign Language Film for The Sea Inside. (Which featured Academy Award Winner Javier Bardem). Mexican director, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu earned a Golden Globe in 2006 for Babel. He has also won Golden Globes for Best Screenplay for Birdman and Best Director for The Revenant.
In 2007, America Ferrera took home the Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a TV Series for her role as Betty in Ugly Betty. Continuing with Latino winners at the 2007 Golden Globes, Javier Bardem won Best Supporting Actor for his role in No Country for Old Men. (Which also earned him an Oscar.)
Last year, in 2015, after eight years of no Latina winning the category of Best Actress in a Television Series or Comedy, Gina Rodriguez took home the Globe for her role as Jane in Jane the Virgin. (A show that has good representations of Latinos.)
This year Oscar Isaac, a Guatemalan actor, won the Golden Globe for Best Actor in A Limited Series or Motion Picture for his work in the HBO movie Show Me A Hero. Gael Garcia Bernal, a Mexican actor, won the Globe for Best Performance in a Television Series Musical or Comedy for his role in Mozart in the Jungle. (The show won Best Comedy Series.)
Counting up all the Latinos and Latinas only a total of 14 have won a Golden Globe.
The talented Rita Moreno has two Emmy awards to her name. She won the Individual Performance – Variety Or Music Program award in 1977 for The Muppet Show and in 1978 she won Outstanding Lead Actress – Single Appearance in a Drama or Comedy Series for The Rockford Files.
In 1978, Ricardo Montalban won an Emmy in the category of Outstanding Single Performance by a Supporting Actor in a Comedy or Drama Series for How the West Was Won. In 1985, Edward James Olmos won the award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his role in Miami Vice.
Jimmy Smits has been nominated for an Emmy 12 times but has only won once. He won Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his role in L.A. Law. Colombian actor John Leguizamo won the award for Individual Performance Variety or Music Program for his one-man show Freak in 1999.
In 2002 Kenny Ortega won Outstanding Choreography and Outstanding Directing for a Variety, Music or Comedy Program for his role in the XIX Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony. In 2006, he won Outstanding Choreography for the film High School Musical. In 2007, America Ferrera won in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for her role in Ugly Betty.
In total, there are 7 Latinos who have won a Primetime Emmy.
Combining the numbers results in only 42 Latinos who have won either an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, an Emmy or all three. Comparing that to a total of 117 (30 Golden Globes, 31 Oscars, 56 Emmys) people who identify as either African American or Black who have won one, two, or all three of these awards. When researching the number of Asians and Pacific Islanders that have won these acting awards, I couldn’t find any information for the Golden Globes or the Emmys but a total of 38 have won Academy Awards. The majority of all the awards won by people of color are typically behind the scenes.
A total of 2,947 Oscar statues have presented meaning that only 90 awards have been handed out to non-white people. With an estimation of about 1,898 Golden Globes having been handed out means that only 88 (excluding number of Asian people since I couldn’t find number of Asian winners) awards have been handed out to people of color. About 1,742 Emmy Awards having been handed out that means that only 63 (excluding number of Asian people since couldn’t find a number for Asian winners) have been handed out to non-white people.
If we add everything up means that 241 awards out of 6,587 have gone to people of color. People of color aren’t winning acting awards because for some reason Hollywood still believes that the white man should portray a person of color. Just take a look at this article which describes multiple times in which white actors were cast as a different race.
Latinos, African-Americans, Asians, and other minority groups need opportunities to portray intellectuals instead of criminals and maybe white actors shouldn’t accept roles meant for people of color. If we aren’t given the chance, how will we ever succeed?
Check out the Huffington post’s article 16 Times Latinos Were Honest Hollywood’s Lack of Diversity to get some perspectives from talented Latinos.
This is the seventh article of the column titled “Living in White America.” Every month there will be a new article discussing how one immigrant group, Hispanics/Latinos, live in America. This column will have articles dealing with anything and everything that concerns Hispanics/Latinos, this could include political and social talks. Some articles may discuss a culture of a different Hispanic/Latino group and interviews with a variety of Hispanics /Latinos will be added as well as interviews with non-Hispanics asking for their opinion. Discrimination against Hispanics and Latinos has gone on long enough and now it’s time people get a look into a world they dislike so much.