Oscars 'In Memoriam': Where Was Lupe Ontiveros?

Actress Lupe Ontiveros at the 2011 NCLR ALMA Awards.  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for NCLR)

Actress Lupe Ontiveros at the 2011 NCLR ALMA Awards. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for NCLR)  (2011 Getty Images)

Ben Affleck wasn’t the only one feeling snubbed by the Academy.

Many Latino fans were shocked that beloved Mexican-American actress Lupe Ontiveros, who died in July, was snubbed not once but twice in the Oscar’s ‘In Memoriam’ tribute.

With a 35-year-long career in Hollywood, including roles in such movies as "Selena," "As Good As It Gets," "Real Women Have Curves" and "The Goonies,” the Academy failed to mention Ontiveros in not only their televised tribute to the stars that had died in the past year but also in their ‘In Memoriam’ online gallery, which honored 114 stars not included in the telecast.

While Ontiveros was not the only prominent name left out of the Academy’s tribute – Andy Griffith nor Phyllis Diller were mentioned either – the believed reason behind the slight was what had people talking.

"Maybe @TheAcademy decided to exclude Lupe Ontiveros in the In Memoriam because she denounced racism in Hollywood,” Camila Quiroz wrote on Twitter.

Felix Sanchez, chairman and co-founder of National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, told Fox News Latino it was a grave injustice not just to Ontiveros, but to Latinos as well.

“The Oscar telecast tried to move forward with ‘Family Guy’ humor, but what would Consuela [the housekeeper in the animated comedy] have said about the failure to acknowledge Lupe Ontiveros' death?,” Sanchez said. “While Lupe Ontiveros may not have had Ernest Borgnine's storied career, she brought humor and reality to her roles.”

He said it illustrates the one-way relationship between Latinos and Hollywood — the Hispanic clout is limited to a select few.

"U.S. Latino actors remain mostly on the lower rungs of official Hollywood," Sanchez said. "The catch-22 comes from the disparity of the work: Latino actors of Lupe's generation played mostly low socioeconomic roles, and despite this truth, Lupe's filmology is substantial and many of her acting film credits are from films honored by their inclusion in the Library of Congress' prestigious National Film Registry."

The yearly list of Hollywood luminaries who have died has become one of the show's most hotly contested honors — one that has prompted aggressive, behind-the-scenes campaigning, according to a recent article in The New York Times. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences picks the most well-known artists and an additional 30 or so.

The Twitterse lit up with people outraged Ontiveros was denied the honor.

Ana Garcia, a Los Angeles-based television reporter, called the snub unforgivable. 

“Academy Awards: you left out a local treasure, actress Lupe Ontiveros who died in July. For many that's inexcusable,” she tweeted.

Throughout her career, Ontiveros had been an advocate for breaking Latino stereotypes in Hollywood.

In 2009, Ontiveros told CNN she was upset that she was continually being cast as a housekeeper.

"It's upsetting to any culture when that is the only projection you have of that culture," Ontiveros said. "You're pigeonholed, stereotyped. That means we don't like you. We forget that this country was founded by immigrants."

The actress, born Guadalupe Moreno in Texas, once estimated she had played a maid more than 300 times.

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