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Do You Have to be Black & Trashy to Win an Oscar?

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Friday, June 1, 2012

Do You Have to be Black & Trashy to Win an Oscar?

Only a select few have had the honor of winning an Academy Award.  Taking home the golden statue is no easy feat, especially for black women.  Let's face it, there just aren't that many roles for us in Hollywood.  Many of the films I watch mostly have an all white cast.  Sometimes, 'there's even a bit of color sprinkled in just to keep us happy' (as I like to say).  But when Halle Berry took home the Best Actress award on March 24, 2002 for her performance in "Monster's Ball," I felt like I won the darn thing.  I thought for sure it would open up so many doors for women of color in Hollywood.

However, I can't say that the flood gates have opened up for more black roles.  In fact, there is still a lot more fighting left to be done.  I feel that black women are highly overlooked when it comes to roles in Hollywood, and it makes me angry when people try to put our sistas down.  In a recent Uptown Magazine article, actress Michelle Rodriguez stated "you have to be trashy and black to get nominated. You can’t just be trashy.”  I had to read the quote a few times to make sure I didn't misunderstand the sentence.  I've seen "Monster's Ball."  While some scenes are a bit racy, I think Halle did a great job at playing Leticia.  I wouldn't consider it trashy.

Hattie McDaniel, Whoppi Goldberg, Jennifer Hudson, Mo'Nique, and Octavia Spencer have all received the Academy Award for supporting roles.

Hattie McDaniel courtesy of

Halle Berry

Whoopi Goldberg courtesy

Jennifer Hudson courtesy

Mo'Nique courtesy
Octavia Spencer courtesy

I don't recall any of their roles being trashy either.  I find it extremely disrespectful when anyone tries to diminish their hard work by saying nasty things like that.  It's just not right!  These women made history and they'll continue to pave the way for other black actresses in the future.  The first Academy Awards happened in 1929.  There have only been a few black actresses to win an Oscar.  That's sad.

My daughter will certainly learn about these historical black women who contributed to breaking down the color lines in hollywood.  Also, the important lesson here is -'don't hate...appreciate.'  It's better to give props and not try to tear others down.  Otherwise you just come off looking bitter.  That's certainly something I'll be passing on to Princess.

What do you think about Michelle Rodriguez's comment?

Weather Anchor Mama


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At June 1, 2012 at 12:43 PM , Blogger Team Jacob said...

Maybe she was drunk......

At June 1, 2012 at 2:04 PM , Blogger Nique said...

I think she had a valid point but she didn't have to word it that way. I definitely don't watch the Oscars or Golden Globe because there are so few deserving people of color. For example, Denzel Washington, Idris Elba and the cast of For Colored Girls are all deserving actors but I haven't seen them win anything recently. I just cant watch some of these people from sorry romantic comedies get awards when there are other way better movies with better actors not getting any recognition.

At June 1, 2012 at 2:20 PM , Blogger Blond Duck said...

I thought these were all lovely women!

At June 1, 2012 at 3:12 PM , Anonymous J said...

My girls are biracial. My husband and I talk about this a lot. Especially regarding my oldest daughter who is so aware now of who and what she sees on television. I was aware of it before having children but since I'm white, I've definitely had to open my eyes to who is being represented and who is not on television. When we watch t.v. together I try to make sure I'm watching television shows that have a variety of races represented. Which is not always so easy to do. The same with music. I try to expose them to a variety of artists. Being the that I am a white mother of biracial children, I have definitely learned to see things in a different way. I have read and heard that it's good to expose your children to other types of media like books and things.

At June 1, 2012 at 3:38 PM , Blogger Weather Anchor Mama said...

June, you are to be applauded. Believe it or not, there are some parents and grandparents of biracial kids who don't do that. Even though I'm black, I still have to be concsious of what I expose her to as well. It sounds like you're a pretty cool and down to earth mom. I plan to expose Princess to both sides. It's so important to teach our kids about their history.

At June 1, 2012 at 5:34 PM , Blogger caligo7 said...

Thanks WeatherAnchorMama. It can be a challenge but all worth it in the end. :)

At June 1, 2012 at 5:34 PM , Blogger caligo7 said...

OH and this is the same person that made the first comment..not sure why I didn't use my google profile :)

At June 1, 2012 at 11:07 PM , Blogger Amarie said...

Look at her career. Pretty much explains a lot.

At June 2, 2012 at 1:35 AM , Blogger Weather Anchor Mama said...

Haha! That's so true Amerie!

At June 2, 2012 at 5:23 AM , Anonymous Tammy said...

Stopping by from SITS to show some love.

At June 2, 2012 at 12:39 PM , Blogger Weather Anchor Mama said...

Thanks so much Tammy for stopping. Hope you come again soon!

At June 2, 2012 at 3:10 PM , Blogger Jenn and Casey said...

This is got to be hard - people of all races are still not well represented and appreciated in the public spotlight. One of the many reasons I stopped watching TV! Anyway, very interesting blog -and thank you for stopping by on our SITS day!

At June 3, 2012 at 12:49 PM , Blogger Joyness Sparkles said...

I love Hattie McDaniel and Octavia Spencer! I have never been a big fan of Whoppie Goldberg or Halle Berry as they are just not the kind of people I would invite to tea. I think the idea of "trashy" depends on the persons perspective. I am far more likely to condemn something/someone to be trashy wheras my sister would probably think it to be just fine. So is a matter of opinion.

Great post and lovely pictures! I am stopping by from the SITS Saturday Sharefest. :)

At June 4, 2012 at 5:28 PM , Blogger Weather Anchor Mama said...

Thanks Joyness! I appreciate you stopping by!:)

At June 9, 2012 at 3:59 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know what Michelle Rodriguez meant by that comment, but I think it was totally inappropriate. If she had something specific she was thinking of she should've found a better way to say it or not say anything at all. Making a blanket statement definitely made her look bitter and childish. Especially as a Latina I think she should have more respect for the long history of white-washing in the media and the little sprinklings of diversity that are currently breaking through. As for the women you wrote about above, Halle Berry and Mo'Nique do strike me on the trashy side, but that is based on some old ideas I have in remembrance, since I don't really watch much TV or movies. The others I think are really classy and did a great job! I'm a better late than never SITSter!

At June 9, 2012 at 10:56 PM , Blogger Weather Anchor Mama said...

Thanks so much Aniweda! I'm trying to figure out what Michelle meant too. Thanks so much for stopping by!


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