The lack of diversity in Hollywood is frustrating for many film and TV lovers, but it's also upsetting to some working in the industry — America Ferrera, for instance. In a recent interview with The Huffington Post, the actress said she "takes it personally."
Ferrera was excited that fellow Latina actress Gina Rodriguez won a Golden Globe for Jane The Virgin, but the victory was bittersweet: “I’ve known Gina for years now, and she is an incredibly warm, genuine and gifted person. I’m very, very happy for her,… [But] it’s a little disheartening to know that there are only two of us.”
Ferrera went on to say:
“The problem isn’t in the awards. It’s not a Golden Globes problem, it’s not an award ceremony problem. It’s a creation of content issue. We need more in art and entertainment that is reflective of the world that we live in. And there’s just not enough reflection in it for women, for people of color. There’s still a huge amount of stories that have yet to be told, and we need those voices to find those platforms so that they can share those experiences.”
The actress — who starred in Ugly Betty and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants — wasn't just speaking as a Hollywood insider, but as someone who consumes entertainment. “As an audience member, I take it very personally, I take it extremely personally when I watch,” she explained. “I’m a huge lover of television and of film — I have been my whole life — and when there’s too much of the same thing and not enough to reflect the world that I live in, I take it personally.”
A recent study proved that diverse casts mean better ratings and a bigger box office, but Hollywood is still way behind in terms of including non-white people and women. Which hurts the business and individuals. As Ferrera put it: "As a member of our society, and as an audience member, I take it very personally when I see depictions of modern day that make me feel invisible — as a woman, as a Latina. I like to look at the art around me and see my experience reflected in it a little bit."