If you’re surprised to learn Rosie Perez hasn’t made an appearance at the Oscars ceremony since she was nominated for an award almost three decades ago, she’s right there with you.
The 56-year-old Do the Right Thing star told Variety in a piece published Thursday, April 8 that she’s hurt the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has yet to invite her back to Hollywood’s annual flagship event since she attended in 1994 as a Best Supporting Actress nominee for 1993’s Fearless. (The prize in the category ended up going to The Piano‘s Anna Paquin.)
“Not even to sit in the audience, not to present, nothing—and I’m a member,” Rosie said. “I love the Academy Awards. I cheer on my peers, but it hurts. It’s like when your home team doesn’t ask you to come back into the stadium after you got up to bat and hit the home run.”
The actress, who is of Puerto Rican descent, explained that it has been tough to deal with prejudice and racism as a woman of color in the industry.
“The biggest struggle has been navigating through other people’s shortcomings,” Perez says. “Other people’s bigotry, racism—and specifically the ones that don’t understand that they are bigots or racists.”
Rosie, who has been making the 2021 awards-circuit rounds as a cast member of HBO’s The Flight Attendant, has maintained a long and successful career since her breakout role in Spike Lee‘s 1989 drama Do the Right Thing, which was nominated for two Oscars.
Since then, her notable films include White Men Can’t Jump (1992), Untamed Heart (1993), It Could Happen to You (1994), Pineapple Express (2008) and Birds of Prey (2020).