NEW YORK – Rosie Perez has not always found the roles she has wanted in Hollywood. The actress told the audience at the Tribeca Film Festival Daring Women Summit that she has often been offered stereotypical roles because she is Latina.
"How many crackhead ho scripts are you going to send me?" she recalled thinking. "I don't mind being a crackhead ho but... make me the lead," she joked.
She said other Hispanic people in Hollywood took her to lunch and told her to stop rocking the boat and questioning her opportunities.
"I don't want to be quiet," she said proudly. "I do want to rock the boat."
She said having other Latino people tell her to stand down was a tough experience.
"It was very, very painful to see fear coming from my own people," she said solemnly.
She said many Latino actors in Hollywood don't want to take on Latino characters because the roles are based on stereotypes.
"I would see so many scripts that had the line 'We have to stick together for mi familia,'" she said with an exaggerated accent. "Who talks like that?"
She said diversity in Hollywood is a problem all around. She said for Latinos, "It's gotten better but it still sucks."
But Perez insisted other races still have a long way to go in Hollywood.
"Hashtag the Oscars are so white, wait a few years," she advised. "It's not just going to be [African-Americans and Latinos speaking out] it's going to be Asians."
Perez also said older women in Hollywood face backlash.
Perez said a prominent older female actress came to her crying and said, "My agent told me I am not f--kable anymore."
The former "View" host said the actress she was describing does not get the roles she deserves, but she would not name who it was.
Still, Perez recognized though Hollywood has a long way to go, things are improving in terms of diversity.
"Things are changing and they are getting better."