Nearly 50 years later, the Academy of Movement Image Arts and Sciences is formally apologizing to Littlefeather for the mistreatment she skilled throughout her speech and within the years to observe.
“The abuse you endured due to this assertion was unwarranted and unjustified,” Academy President David Rubin wrote in a letter to Littlefeather. “The emotional burden you may have lived by way of and the price to your individual profession in our business are irreparable. For too lengthy the braveness you confirmed has been unacknowledged. For this, we provide each our deepest apologies and our honest admiration.”
In a press release, Littlefeather referred to as the upcoming occasion, throughout which she’ll obtain the apology in individual, “a dream come true.”
“Relating to the Academy’s apology to me, we Indians are very affected person folks — it is solely been 50 years!” she mentioned. “We have to maintain our humorousness about this always. It is our methodology of survival.”
A number of Indigenous artists will carry out in the course of the occasion for Littlefeather, together with Hen Runningwater, co-chair of the Academy’s Indigenous Alliance, and Virginia Carmelo, a descendent of the Tongva individuals who will lead a land acknowledgment.
“It’s profoundly heartening to see how a lot has modified since I didn’t settle for the Academy Award 50 years in the past,” Littlefeather mentioned.
Her speech earned boos and applause
When Brando gained finest actor for his starring position in “The Godfather,” he was absent. In his stead, he requested Littlefeather, then an actress and activist, to attend the ceremony — and to refuse the award on his behalf.
After the ceremony, Littlefeather mentioned she was “silenced” and struggled to seek out work within the movie business. She devoted a lot of her profession post-Oscars to activism and founding performing arts organizations for Indigenous actors.
Regardless of the condemnation she obtained from some in Hollywood who disagreed together with her defenses of Native People, Littlefeather mentioned she obtained reward and assist from leaders like Coretta Scott King and Cesar Chavez.
“I knew I had performed the fitting factor,” she instructed A.Body.