Friday, June 10, 2011

Honoring Ms. Hattie

Happy Birthday to the late Academy Award winning actress, Hattie McDaniel, born June 10, 1898 in Wichita, Kansas, to former slaves; she was the youngest of 13 children.  Although Ms. McDaniel has starred in many films, she is best known for her role as a Mammy in Gone with the Wind (1939). Ms. McDaniel won the prestigious Academy Award for her role as best supporting actress; in fact, she was the first African American to win the Academy Award.

Despite the menial roles given to African American actors and actresses at the time, Ms. McDaniel made the best of these roles and gave them a uniqueness and meaning that positioned her as a trailblazer for those to come. Ms. McDaniel was also a professional singer-songwriter, comedian, stage actress, radio performer, and television star. She was definitely a woman of many talents. Ms. Hattie died October 26, 1952 from breast cancer. She was 57.

In 2010, African American comedienne and actress and Academy Award winner, Mo'Nique of the Mo'Nique Show and film, Precious 2009, purchased the rights to Hattie McDaniel’s life story; she is also set to portray the late actress in a film adaptation directed by Lee Daniels. She purchased the story because she admired McDaniel for her courage against all the odds as a black woman in America in the early 20th Century. I take my hat off to native Marylander, Mo’Nique, for honoring a woman who many have purposely tried to forget. I’m looking forward to Hattie mcDaniel’s story. I am certain that Mo'Nique will do a wonderful job. She is in her own right destined for more greatness. Peace~


JJ said...

Hattie was wonderful! Congrats.

get zapped said...

Fabulous story - amazing woman! Thanks for sharing.

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