Hispanics In The Film Industry
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During the era of Frank Sinatras and Esther Williams being Hispanic in the film
industry was a struggle. Most were forced to change their names, accept roles as
members of other ethnic groups, and pretend to be of European descent. Dolores Del Rio
took a huge role in Hollywood. From 1925 through 1929 she starred in fifteen silent
films and still had yet to learn English. Her roles included her portrayal of French,
Russian, Polynesian, Indian and Italian women. During the cold-war era Del Rio was
barred from the United States for having aided anti-Franco refugees from the Spanish
civil war. She left Hollywood and throughout the forties and fifties worked in the
Mexican film industry and took part in introducing the fledging Mexican cinema to
international audiences.
Ricardo Montalban worked his way from Broadway, to Mexican Cinema, and
finally to Hollywood. His appearances in Hollywood films were never as a hero. In
Latin films he often played the lead role and hero but in Hollywood he was limited to the
portrayal of a Latin lover, a victim or the hero of the movies right-hand man. His
characters ranged from Indians, Japanese warlords, French dukes, Italian lovers, and
priests. In the film “Neptunes Daughter,” starring Esther Williams, Montalban marks
the first time a Latin actor pursues a romantic relationship with an Anglo and it became a
highly significant film for this reason. From the forties through the sixties Hispanic
actors were not profoundly accepted into the mainstream of Hollywood movie making,
few won critical acclaim and none received awards. Montalban founded Nosotros to
promote equal opportunities for Hispanic American actors and sponsored the golden
eagle awards to recognize their performances. After a thirty year career of steady
employment in the film industry Montalban found work became much harder to find with
a visible role as an equal rights activist. He made few television and movie appearances
after this. In Hollywood today Montalbans career would not have been forced to come
to an end. Many celebrities today are Political activists and donating more time and

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Mexican Film Industry And Hollywood Films. (April 2, 2021). Retrieved from https://www.freeessays.education/mexican-film-industry-and-hollywood-films-essay/