Hattie McDaniel, Best Supporting Actress, Gone with the Wind (1940)
In 1940, Hattie McDaniel became the first African-American to take home an Oscar for her supporting role of Mammy in Gone with the Wind.
Responding to criticism from the black community for playing maids, McDaniel reportedly stated, “Why should I complain about making $700 a week playing a maid? If I didn’t, I’d be making $7 a week being one.”
Sadly, although the Academy bestowed her with its highest honor on Oscar night, McDaniel and her escort were forced to sit at a segregated table, apart from the rest of the Gone with the Wind cast, because of the color of their skin.
[Hattie McDaniel, Photo via]
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