28th Screen Actors Guild Awards - Inside
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Ariana DeBose becomes the first Afro-Latina queer actor to win a SAG Award

After accepting her award, the Puerto Rican descent star said her winning indicates ‘that doors are opening’

Ariana DeBose becomes the first Afro-Latina queer actor to win a SAG Award in the best supporting actress category for her performance as Anita in Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story.

After accepting her award, the Puerto Rican descent star said her winning indicates “that doors are opening,” adding, “It’s an honor to an Afro Latina queer woman of color and a dancer and a singer and an actor.”

28th Screen Actors Guild Awards©GettyImages
Ariana DeBose winner of Outstanding Perfromance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role for West Side Story in the General Photo Room at the 28th Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Barker Hangar on Sunday, February 27, 2022.

DeBose also said that although she is the first, she will not be the last. “That’s the important part. Whatever firsts are attached to my name, they’re important to me, but I’m focused on the fact that if I’m the first of anything, it means I will not be the last.”

DeBose honored Chita Rivera and Rita Moreno and described what she is living as an honor. The legacy of the role “includes both Chita and Rita and now Ariana, and it’s really special to me,” she said as reported by NBC News. “And we’re all very different types of Latinas. There’s no one way to be Latina or Hispanic. There are many beautiful ways, and each and every one of us is a testament to that.”

Besides Ariana, the only Latinas nominated at the SAG Awards have been Salma Hayek in Frida (2002), Catalina Sandino Moreno in Maria Full of Grace (2004), Cameron Diaz for Being John Malkovich (1999), and Vanilla Sky (2001), Adriana Barraza for Babel (2006) and Jennifer Lopez for Hustlers (2019).

As we previously reported, Ariana DeBose is a name you should expect to see a lot in the coming months. DeBose is a seasoned Broadway actress, who, over the past years has become quite a presence in Hollywood.

She’s had roles in “Bring It On: The Musical” and earned her first Tony nomination for her work in “Summer: The Donna Summer Musical.” She starred in Ryan Murphy’s The Prom, alongside Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, and James Corden, and was cast in Schmigadoon!

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