Some Latina Actresses who paved the way.....

by latinofilmindustry | created - 03 Mar 2015 | updated - 03 Mar 2015 | Public

These Latina Actresses are the Global Matriarchs of Latino film. As mentors to the Latino Film Industry, they fought through stereotypes, dirscrimination, and segregated film type casting. If it were not for these pioneers, Latinas would not have the position in film that they do.

1. Katy Jurado

Actress | High Noon

Katy Jurado was born María Cristina Estela Marcela Jurado García into a wealthy family on January 16, 1924, in Guadalajara, Mexico. Her early years were spent amid luxury until her family's lands were confiscated by the federal government for redistribution to the landless peasantry. Despite the ...

2. Anita Page

Actress | The Broadway Melody

Beautiful Anita Page was one of the most famous and popular leading ladies during the last years of the silent screen and the first years of the talkie era. She was best known for starring in The Broadway Melody (1929), the first sound film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture. Her leading men...

3. Elena Sánchez Valenzuela

Actress | Santa

Elena Sánchez Valenzuela was born on March 2, 1899 in Mexico City, Mexico. She was an actress, known for Santa (1918), En la hacienda (1922) and Barranca trágica (1917). She died on September 30, 1950.

Elena Sánchez Valenzuela was born on March 2, 1900 in Mexico. She was an actress, known for Santa (1918), En la hacienda (1922) and Barranca trágica (1917). She died on September 30, 1950. See full bio » Born: March 2, 1900 in Mexico Died: September 30, 1950 (age 50) https://wfpp.cdrs.columbia.edu/pioneer/ccp-elena-sanchez-valenzuela/

4. Lupe Velez

Actress | The Girl from Mexico

Lupe Velez was born on July 18, 1908, in San Luis de Potosi, Mexico, as Maria Guadalupe Villalobos Velez. She was sent to Texas at the age of 13 to live in a convent. She later admitted that she wasn't much of a student because she was so rambunctious. She had planned to become a champion ...

5. Dolores del Rio

Actress | Las abandonadas

Dolores del Rio was the first Mexican movie star with international appeal and had a meteoric career in 1920s Hollywood (an extraordinary accomplishment for an Hispanic female on those years). She came from an aristocratic family in Durango. In the Mexican revolution of 1916, however, the family ...

6. Carmen Miranda

Actress | The Gang's All Here

Carmen Miranda was born Maria do Carmo Miranda da Cunha on February 9, 1909, near Porto, Portugal, in the town of Marco de Canavezes. Not long after her birth her family moved to Brazil, where her father was involved in the produce business. The family settled in the then-capital city of Rio de ...

7. Rita Hayworth

Actress | Gilda

Rita Hayworth was born Margarita Carmen Cansino on October 17, 1918, in Brooklyn, New York, into a family of dancers. Her father, Eduardo Cansino Reina, was a dancer as was his father before him. He emigrated from Spain in 1913. Rita's American mother, Volga Margaret (Hayworth), who was of mostly ...

8. Linda Darnell

Actress | A Letter to Three Wives

Linda Darnell, one of five children of a postal clerk, grew up fast. At 11, she was modeling clothes, giving her age as 16. At 13, she was appearing on the stage with little theater groups. Her mother encouraged her to audition when Hollywood talent scouts came to Dallas. She went to California and...

9. Sara Montiel

Actress | La violetera

Sara Montiel was born in the village of Campo de Criptana, province of Ciudad Real, in the region of Castille-La Mancha, Spain. Her parents were Isidoro Abad, a peasant, and Maria Vicenta Fernández, a door-to-door beautician. The future star was christened Maria Antonia Alejandra Abad Fernández. ...

10. María Félix

Actress | Enamorada

Doubtlessly the most famous Mexican movie star, María Félix created a larger-than-life character: herself. La Doña, as the star was known after the character of her 1943 movie Doña Bárbara, starred in 47 movies, most of them forgettable except for her presence in them. More a star than an actress, ...

María de los Ángeles Félix Güereña (Spanish: [maˈɾia ˈfeliks]; 8 April 1914 – 8 April 2002) was a Mexican film actress. She is considered one of the most important female figures of the Golden Age of Mexican cinema. She was also considered one of the most beautiful film actresses of her time, and one of the greatest erotic myths of Spanish-language cinema. Along with Pedro Armendáriz and Dolores del Río, she is one of the most important figures of Latin American cinema of the 1940s and 1950s. She is known by the nickname La Doña a name derived from her character in the film Doña Bárbara (1943). She is also known as María Bonita, thanks to the anthem composed exclusively for her, as a wedding gift by the composer Agustín Lara. She completed a film career that included 47 films made in Mexico, Spain, France, Italy and Argentina. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mar%C3%ADa_F%C3%A9lix

11. Susan Kohner

Actress | Imitation of Life

Susan Kohner was born on November 11, 1936 in Los Angeles, California. Her mother was actress Lupita Tovar, a successful performer from the 1930s and it was only natural that for Susan to gravitate toward acting. Her first role was in To Hell and Back (1955) in 1955. One more film in 1956 and one in...

First Hispanic-American to be nominated for Best Supporting Actress

12. Rita Moreno

Actress | West Side Story

Rita Moreno has had a thriving acting career for the better part of six decades. One of the very few performers (and the very first) to win an Oscar, an Emmy, a Tony and a Grammy, she was born Rosita Dolores Alverío in Humacao, Puerto Rico, on December 11, 1931, to seamstress Rosa María (Marcano) ...

First Hispanic-American to win an Academy Award-Best Supporting Actress-West Side Story

13. Raquel Welch

Actress | The Three Musketeers

A new reigning 1960s international sex symbol took to the cinematic throne as soon as Raquel Welch emerged from the sea in her purposely depleted, furry prehistoric bikini. Tantalizingly wet with her garb clinging to all the right amazonian places, One Million Years B.C. (1966), if nothing else, ...

14. Lina Romay

Actress | La comtesse noire

Stunningly comely and slinky brunette Lina Romay rates highly as one of the boldest, most sensuous, and enticing actresses to have appeared with tremendous frequency in a large volume of European horror and exploitation features made from the early 1970s to the early 21st century.

Romay was born ...

15. Shelley Morrison

Actress | Will & Grace

Despite remaining on the periphery of character stardom all these years, New York-born character actress Shelley Morrison has had a long and varied career since the early 60s. She started out on TV in such popular shows as The Farmer's Daughter (1963) and Laredo (1965), making a career out of an ...

16. Fernanda Montenegro

Actress | Central do Brasil

Arlette Pinheiro Esteves da Silva was born on 16th October 1929 in Rio de Janeiro. She adopted the name "Fernanda" because she thought it sounded good. "Montenegro" came after her family doctor.

In late 40s she was translating and adapting famous theater plays to radio. She begun her artistic life ...

17. Lynda Carter

Actress | Wonder Woman

Lynda Carter was born on July 24, 1951 in Phoenix, Arizona, USA as Linda Jean Cordova Carter. She is an actress, known for Wonder Woman (1975), Sky High (2005) and The Dukes of Hazzard (2005). She has been married to Robert Altman since January 29, 1984. They have two children. She was previously ...

Best known for her role in "Wonder Woman," Carter was born in Phoenix, Arizona, the daughter of Juanita (née Córdova) and Colby Carter.Her Mormon father had English and Scots-Irish ancestry, and her mother was of Spanish and Mexican descent. Carter made her public television debut on Lew King's Talent Show at age 5. During high school, Carter performed in a band called Just Us, consisting of a marimba, a conga drum, an acoustic guitar, and a stand-up bass played by another girl.

18. Norma Aleandro

Actress | La historia oficial

Norma Aleandro is the Grande Dame of Argentine theater and cinema not only because she was not content to have trodden the stage as early as the the age of nine, she is still active in theater and cinema in 2011. Her last film to date, Daniel Burman's La suerte en tus manos (2012) is in ...

19. Lupe Ontiveros

Actress | Chuck & Buck

Lupe Ontiveros was born on September 17, 1942 in El Paso, Texas, USA as Guadalupe Moreno. She is known for her work on Chuck & Buck (2000), Real Women Have Curves (2002) and The Goonies (1985). She was married to Elias P. Ontiveros. She died on July 26, 2012 in Whittier, California, USA.

Lupe Ontiveros was born on September 17, 1942 in El Paso, Texas, USA as Guadalupe Moreno. She is known for her work on As Good as It Gets (1997), The Goonies (1985) and Real Women Have Curves (2002). She was married to Elias Ontiveros. She died on July 26, 2012 in Whittier, California, USA.

20. Elizabeth Peña

Actress | Rush Hour

Elizabeth's love for the arts came naturally, as her father was a well-known playwright, actor, director and novelist, so it is not hard to understand that by the time she was eight, Cuban-American Elizabeth Pena already had designs to become an actress. Born in Elizabeth, New Jersey, and raised in...

21. Maria Conchita Alonso

Actress | The Running Man

Maria Conchita Alonso was born Maria Concepcion Alonso Bustillo on June 29, 1957 in Cienfuegos, Cuba, but raised in Caracas, Venezuela. She was crowned Miss Teenager World in 1971 and later as Miss Distrito Federal became the first runner up in the Miss Venezuela 1975 competition placing later that...

22. Salma Hayek

Actress | Frida

One of Hollywood's most dazzling leading actresses, Salma Hayek was born on September 2, 1966, in the oil boomtown of Coatzacoalcos, Mexico. Hayek has freely admitted that she and her brother, Sami, were spoiled rotten by her well-to-do businessman father, Sami Hayek Dominguez, and her ...

First and only Hispanic-American to be nominated for Best Actress-Frida

23. Joanna Kerns

Actress | Knocked Up

Joanna Kerns was born on February 12, 1953 in San Francisco, California, USA as Joanne Crussie DeVarona. She is an actress and director, known for Knocked Up (2007), Growing Pains (1985) and Girl, Interrupted (1999). She has been married to Marc Appleton since September 30, 1994. She was previously...

Joanna Kerns was born on February 12, 1953 in San Francisco, California, USA as Joanne Crussie DeVarona. She is an actress and director, known for Growing Pains (1985), Knocked Up (2007) and Girl, Interrupted (1999). She has been married to Marc Appleton since September 30, 1994. She was previously married to Richard Kerns. Born: Joanne Crussie DeVarona February 12, 1953 in San Francisco, California, USA

24. Elpidia Carrillo

Actress | Predator

Elpidia Carrillo was born on August 16, 1961 in Paracuaro, Michoacan, Mexico. She is an actress and producer, known for Predator (1987), Nine Lives (2005) and Salvador (1986).

25. Constance Marie

Actress | George Lopez

Constance Marie was a very busy actress in 2002, juggling two primetime series: a short-lived one-hour drama American Family (2002), which aired on PBS and a half-hour sitcom, George Lopez (2002) on ABC.

On the critically praised American Family (2002), Marie starred alongside Edward James Olmos, ...

26. Jenny Gago

Actress | Bound by Honor

Jenny Gago is one of Hollywood's most versatile and respected Latina actresses. Her powerful portrayal of the matriarch Maria Sanchez in Gregory Nava's hit film, My Family (1995), was a critically acclaimed contribution to what she describes as "an honorable and poignant script."

Gago has starred in...

27. Jennifer Lopez

Actress | The Boy Next Door

Jennifer Lynn Lopez was born in the The Bronx on July 24, 1969. She is the middle of three musically-inclined sisters, Leslie Scholl, a homemaker, and Lynda Lopez, a DJ on New York's WKTU, a VH1 VJ, and a morning news show correspondent on New York's Channel 11. Jennifer always dreamed of being a ...

28. Dyana Ortelli

Actress | ¡Three Amigos!

Dyana Ortelli was born on May 1, 1961 in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico as Dyana Elizondo. She is known for her work on ¡Three Amigos! (1986), Coco (2017) and Get the Gringo (2012).

Dyana Ortelli was born on May 1, 1961 in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico as Dyana Elizondo. She is known for her work on American Me (1992), ¡Three Amigos! (1986) and La Bamba (1987).

29. Evelina Fernández

Actress | Flatliners

Fernández is an award-winning actor and writer. Born and raised in East Los Angeles, she attended Garfield High School, East L.A. College and Cal State University, Los Angeles, While at Cal State, she found her niche in Chicano Theater. Ms. Fernandez has starred in film roles with Edward James Olmos...

30. Annayaz Lizarraga

Actress | The Grey Strip

Annayaz Lizarraga is an actress, known for The Grey Strip (2010).

31. Vira Montes

Actress | American Me

Vira Montes is an actress, known for American Me (1992), T.J. Hooker (1982) and That Summer in LA (2000).

32. Mercedes Ruehl

Actress | The Fisher King

Mercedes Ruehl lent her craft to many television and film roles before arriving to her most successfully received role: Anne Napolitano, the emotionally driven and flamboyant video-store owner, and girlfriend to a a fallen radio star (played by Jeff Bridges) in Terry Gilliam's masterpiece The ...

The first Cuban-American to win an Academy Award

33. Rosie Perez

Actress | White Men Can't Jump

Rosie Perez was born in Bushwick, Brooklyn, New York City to Lydia Perez and Ismael Serrano, a merchant marine. She is of Puerto Rican descent. Rosie attended Grover Cleveland High School located in Ridgewood, Queens, New York, and later enrolled at Los Angeles City College in Los Angeles, ...

Oscar Nominated-Best Supporting Actress-Fearless



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