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Yalitza Aparicio Admits Her Greatest Fear Is Speaking In Public And Not Being Able To Express Herself Correctly

Fans of “Roma” actress Yalitza Aparicio might be surprised to learn that the 25-year-old Tlaxiaco, Oaxaca native has a very common fear that you wouldn’t expect an actress to have. Even though she comes off as a glamorous actress who has graced the cover of “Vogue” and been nominated for an Oscar, Aparicio is just a young woman who has normal fears like the rest of us.

At the TIME 100’s Gala, Aparicio admitted that she is afraid of “speaking in public” and not expressing herself correctly.

While walking the red carpet at the TIME 100’s Gala, Aparicio was asked what some of her fears are. As usual, Aparicio answered with her standard honesty and candidness. Aparicio spoke through her translator, who also happened to be “Roma” producer Gabriela Rodriguez

“Speaking in public, speaking in front of the camera and being fearful of not being able to express myself correctly,” was Aparicio’s response.

Aparicio had no acting experience before landing the role of Cleo in Alfonso Cuaron’s semi-autobiographical Oscar-winning movie, so adjusting to the novelty of being the center of attention must’ve been challenging, to say the least.

When further asked about how she musters up the courage to face her fears head on, Aparicio insisted that it was a “process”.

“It took me time in the beginning when we were shooting the film,” she said. “It was day by day, and [it was the] same with the red carpets. In the beginning, it was a struggle and after I got used to it, it got better.”

Aparicio was attending the TIME 100 event because she had been named by TIME as one of the 100 most influential people of the year. “Roma” director Alfonso Cuaron himself wrote her tribute in TIME magazine, writing that Aparicio has the ability to “take any task that’s put in front of her and excel in ways no one thought possible”.

Aparicio was also celebrated for being a “force of change and empowerment for indigenous women” and for “embracing the symbolic value of what she has done” in the entertainment industry.

As for us, we appreciate Aparicio’s honesty when it comes to the challenges she’s faced since embarking on this new career path. It’s not often that we see celebrities embracing their vulnerability and getting real about what it takes to navigate fame when the world’s eyes are constantly watching. Aparicio’s willingness to share her inner life with her fans makes us love her even more.

Yalitza Aparicio Says She’s Waiting For A Role That Won’t Pigeonhole ‘Because of Appearance”

Entertainment

Yalitza Aparicio Says She’s Waiting For A Role That Won’t Pigeonhole ‘Because of Appearance”

Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty

Since the start of her acting career, Oaxacan actress Yalitza Aparicio has been sure to see that her work helps uphold her community. While many actors on the rise tend to focus on racking up more acting roles and fame, Aparicio has been much more vocal about her desire to focus on her advocacy and work for organizations like Cine Too. What’s more, ensuring that she secures proper representation for Indigenous people like herself.

While Aparicio first made headlines and won our hearts with her performance in the 2018 film Roma the Indigenous actress has yet to appear in another role on screen.

It turns out, it isn’t for a lack of offers.

Speaking with Indie Wire about her career, Aparicio has said that she is taking her time to find a role that properly represents her and her community.

“My objective in my career is to give visibility to all of us who have been kept in the dark for so long,” Aparicio claimed in a recent interview with IndieWire. “The acting projects I’m working on are moving slowly because I’m putting all my efforts in not being pigeonholed because of my appearance.”

Aparicio, who is 26-years-old, was born in Tlaxiaco, Oaxaca, rocketed to fame when she took on the role of Cleo in Alfonso Cuarón’s 2018 movie Roma. The film, which was nominated for various Academy Awards followed Aparicio as Cleo a housekeeper who works in a wealthy household in Mexico City’s Colonia Roma. Aparicio’s role brought her praise not just for her skills but for her role in solidifying a much-needed portrayal of Mexico’s Indigenous community.

Still, despite the praise and fame, the role brought her, Aparicio is adamant that her next role will be something greater.

“I come from a community where there’s no movie theater, and as a consequence, the population — especially the children that grow up in those communities — has less of an interest in the cinematic arts. [Cine Too] has the possibility to reach these children and provide an opportunity to instill in them the passion for cinema and teach them about this art form,” she explained in her interview. “I’m conscious that every step I take may open doors for someone else and at the same time it’s an opportunity for society to realize we are part of it and that we are here,”

In her interview, Aparicio points out that while she is very aware that Indigenous filmmakers and allies “have a complicated job because these things can’t be changed overnight,” she is still pushing for real change.

“Wherever I go, I’ll always be proudly representing our Indigenous communities,” she asserted. “We can show people that the only limits are within us.”

Yalitza Sparks A Conversation About The Derogatory Term ‘Prieta’

Things That Matter

Yalitza Sparks A Conversation About The Derogatory Term ‘Prieta’

Frazer Harrison / Getty

Prieta. It might translate literally to brown but the word holds quite a bit of weight in the Mexican community where it is viewed as a racist term for dark-skinned people.

Recently, Roma actress Yalitza Aparicio opened up about having the term used against her as a child and again as she’s obtained celebrity status.

This week, Aparicio spoke out about racism in Mexico in a post called “Recuerdos De Mi México” to her Twitter page and explained why she had reclaimed the word “prieta.”

In a post shared on Twitter, a user by the name of Rosario Estrad @rosario55920512 a poem reclaiming the term prieta read “They call me prieta and think it is an insult. Prieta, like the fertile soil under my bare feet. Prieta, like the night. Prieta, the bronze race.”

“That’s right, I’m brown, pretty brown and with my head held high,” Aparicio wrote in a retweet about the post. “I share this text for those who use this word offensively.

Prieta is a word with different connotations in different cultures and countries.

As Remezcla points out, in Mexico “prieta” is used as a derogatory for Brown or darker-skinned people. The term is most often used by lighter-skinned people and in Caribbean countries and Central America, the term is used in an alternate form “prieto” but still with derogatory undercurrents. Aparicio’s decision to reclaim the word has sparked conversations about whether it is okay for non-Black people (no matter how dark or light) to use or claim the term.

Last month, Aparicio penned a New York Times op-ed about the discrimination she’s been forced to endure in and outside of the Latin American community.

Writing about how her role in Roma gave her a platform that allowed her to speak about racism in the Latin community, Aparicio wrote “At that time, Mexico was experiencing political and social upheaval. National turmoil brought to the fore problems that still persist to this day, namely the normalization of classism, racism, and denigration, along with other forms of segregation and belittlement based on skin color, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or social class.”