Yalitza Aparicio makes history with an Oscar Nomination for her role in 'Roma'
She is the first indigenous woman to be nominated for the award of "Actress in a Leading Role."
Yalitza Aparicio was planning to be a teacher when a casting for “Roma “came to her hometown of Tlaxiaco, in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico. Although she had no acting experience, her sister convinced her to audition; now, Apraricio has been nominated for an Oscar Award for her role as Cleo, the domestic worker for an upper-middle class family in the 1970s.
Aparicio is the first indigenous woman to be nominated for the award of “Actress in a Leading Role,” and only the second Mexican woman to be nominated, following Salma Hayek for her role in “Frida.”
In a statement to ET after learning about the nomination, Aparicio said: “From the very first casting call to this morning, my ‘Roma’ journey has been extraordinary. As a daughter of a domestic worker and an indigenous woman myself, I am proud this movie will help those of us who feel invisible be seen.”
She continued, “I am extremely grateful to the Academy for recognizing ‘Roma’ and am honored to be part of Alfonso’s vision. Congratulations to Alfonso, the entire cast and crew, and my dear friend Marina De Tavira. I am so humbled and honored. Thank you.”
The movie was also nominated for nine other categories, including “Best Picture,” “Actress in a Supporting Role,” “Foreign Language Film,” and “Best Director.”
The black and white, Spanish-language film is based on the experiences of director Alfonso Cuarón, who was born and raised in Mexico City. Cleo’s character is based on Cuaron’s childhood nanny, Liboria “Libo” Rodriguez.
The nominations for the 91st Academy Awards, which will take place on Feb. 24, come shortly after the movie won two Golden Globes for “Best Director” and “Best Foreign Film.”
Aparicio shared her excitement about the nomination on Twitter and Instagram.
— Yalitza Aparicio Martínez (@YalitzaAparicio) January 22, 2019
Aparicio was recently featured on the cover of Vogue Mexico as well as in a video released by the publication, in which she said: “Certain stereotypes are being broken: that only people with a certain profile can be actresses or on the cover of magazines. Other faces of Mexico are now being recognized. It is something that makes me so happy and proud of my roots.”