ABC’s Ugly Betty star America Ferrera has claimed that “opportunities don’t exist” for Latino actors in Hollywood, saying “it’s as difficult today as it was” twenty years ago.
America Ferrera — who appeared in the hit movie Barbie this year — made her comments in a recent interview with the BBC’s 100 Women, the broadcaster’s annual program focusing on feminism and women’s issues.
“While I enjoy an incredible career full of opportunity that I have fought hard for and worked hard for, I know that the vast reality for Latinos in this industry is that it’s as difficult today as it was 16 years ago, or even 22 years ago when I started out,” Ferrera said.
“They are anomalies, these moments where Latinos get to shine,” she added.
“And, of course, we’ve had those moments, but I feel like we’ve all been waiting a really long time for the watershed. It’s complicated to reconcile the almost fairy tale story of my journey with what I know is the reality for the vast majority of people like me.”
She said Latino roles tend to fall into two categories — “a poor immigrant criminal, or a hyper-sexualized Latina.”
Ferrera won an Emmy Award for Ugly Betty in 2007.
“It’s 2023, and I’m still the only one, which I think points exactly to the issue,” she told the BBC. “It took so long because the opportunities don’t exist.”
As Breitbart News reported, Hispanic and Latino actors and filmmakers are still being left behind in Hollywood, according to a study by the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative.
The study found that only ten lead or co-lead roles across the top 100 earning movies of 2022 went to Hispanic or Latino actors. Among those, eight of them went to females.
Over the course of 16 years, only 75 Hispanic or Latino actors — which was a little more than 4 percent — were cast in lead or co-lead roles.
Additionally, only five of them were aged 45 and older, with three of the older Latinas being played by Jennifer Lopez.