Hollywood Is Intimidated By Beautiful Black Women…

Let me just say, I am not here to criticize the looks of any women, nor am I here to promote that one form of beauty is better than another. But, Hollywood has insecurities when it comes to giving recognition to Beautiful Black Women in films. Viola Davis, a very beautiful woman, may receive an Oscar nomination for her role of Abilene in the film adaptation of The Help. I think Davis is very talented and attractive woman, yet it seems that in order to receive recognition in Hollywood a Black woman has to conform to the mammy, jezebel or sapphire roles. Not only does she have to fufill these stereotypes, but she also needs to be MADE to look less physically appealing than her white counterparts. Black Girl with Long Hair wrote about this phenomenon in her post.

Black women in Hollywood are portrayed as unappealing as possible. Viola Davis is an attractive woman, but they made her look homely in that movie…why I don’t know…As if ALL Black women who were maids were unappealing. My great-grandmother was a domestic, she cared for a white family and from what I understand, she was an articulate, ambitious and attractive  woman. I don’t know why Hollywood is obsessed with portraying ALL Black women as cumbersome mammies…

If you look at Black women who receive Oscars, they always portray characters who exemplify the ole mammy or jezebel stereotypes. Hattie McDaniel was the first Black woman to win an Oscar for her 1939 portrayal of Mammy in “Gone with the Wind.” While, Ms McDaniel was extraordinary in her acting , her character conformed to both the asexual mammy and domineering sapphire stereotypes. Halle Berry won her Oscar for best actress in Monster’s Ball by portraying a Jezebel and Monique won her Oscar in Precious for portraying the welfare queen stereotype and the immoral Black mother stereotype.

Now, all of these women are beautiful and talented…but it’s just sad to me that the only time a Black actress receives any recognition in Hollywood is when she is portraying these roles. Do you think if a Black actress like Angela Bassett (she SO should have won an Oscar by now) portrayed Cleopatra, Queen Nzinga or Hatshepsut, she would receive an Oscar…? I don’t know that she would because Cleopatra, Nzinga and Hatshepsut do not conform to the traditional image of Black women in Hollywood.

Hollywood likes to portray Black woman as being the least attractive and physically appealing of all women. The reason for this goes back to slavery. You see the whole origin of the mammy caricature started because during slavery (and even during Jim Crow) white men regularly raped Black women and kept Black women as mistresses. You see the story of Celia, Harriet Jacobs for more information.  These type of forced or coerced relationships went on all around the world, not just in the United States. In order to excuse the white men for their sexual relationships with their Black slaves, they created the mammy caricature. She was a cumbersome, elderly, asexual Black woman. This stereotype was designed to make Black women look so UNAPPEALING that white men wouldn’t POSSIBLY want any type of sexual relationship with them. This helped to protect the ego of their white wives as well as excuse the white men for their crimes against Black women’s bodies.

This same mentality persists to this day and it’s evidenced in Hollywood. We can’t have beautiful, articulate Black women being portrayed positively in Hollywood because that would threaten the beauty hierarchy that benefits their white counterparts. This is why women like Kenya Moore, Angela Bassett, Meagan Goode and Nicole Beharie don’t get the same opportunities as other non-Black actresses. They’re all beautiful, articulate and intelligent Black actresses who don’t conform to society’s stereotypes of Black womanhood.

Nicole Beharie played the sh*t out of her role in American Violet, but for some reason, that movie hardly received any mainstream recognition or accolades and it was based on a true story.

This just goes to show that Hollywood is obviously offended and threatened by beautiful, articulate and non-stereotypical portrayals of Black women.

I believe images like this one are the types of images Hollywood likes to see of Black women:

Let’s analyze this still from Martin Lawrence’s Big Momma’s House 2:


We’ve got the mammy caricature in the obese, elderly Black woman who is laying on the beach contrasted with the thin, blonde and appealing white women. Obviously this is a parody of Bo Derek running down the beach in her cornrows. We are mocking the Black woman for daring to want to match the beauty of “the beautiful white woman.” The ironic thing is, Bo Derek’s cornrows are something Black women have always done, so really Bo Derek was imitating the beauty of Black women, not the other way around. But still, in this photo we’re mocking the Black woman for imitating the beauty that was stolen from her in the first place…

But, this is the story…we’ve all seen it. The big lips on Angelina Jolie are God’s gift to the world, but Black women have always had lips like that, Kim Kardashian and J.Lo’s booties are praised like they’re the first and only women to have that body type, when MANY Black women have always had that body shape NATURALLY…but that’s how they do us…

Historically, people have always capitalized off of Black women’s bodies…going all the way back to slavery, why should it change now?…

But, the most important thing is for Black women to learn to recognize these stereotypes for what they are. This is why movies like Precious, Monster’s Ball and The Help are given such recognition by Hollywood, while other movies like American Violet and Rain don’t get their due credit in Hollywood.

PICTURES! Gorgeous Black Women that the Media Doesn’t Want You to See!

12 thoughts on “Hollywood Is Intimidated By Beautiful Black Women…”

  1. I also loved Nicole in American Violet. I still feel to this day that Angela Bassett deserved the Best Actress Oscar for her role as Tina Turner in ‘What’s love got to do with I’t. She gave the best performance of her life in that movie. Halle sucks and $%^s Billy Bob in Monster’s Ball and receives the Oscar for that performance. Halle is not even black, and is no where close to Angela’s’ caliber as an actress, yet, she was deemed more worthy of that illustrious recognition.

    Through my own day to day observances there is an inherent expectation that if you are a black woman you automatically are supposed to: look uglier, be overweight, be academically incompetent, and poor. You are allowed to be funny, and athletically inclined, but nothing else. Black women are so damn phenomenal, hardworking go-getters, and innovators. That’s why I love women like Oprah and Michelle Obama because they are high profile black women who are doing the thing, and there are millions of black women just like them scattered all across the globe. Loved this post!


    1. thanks for your comment. I know Angela B. deserved some mad recognition for her role in What’s Love Got to Do With It,” she got ripped off completely she is one of the best actresses in Hollywood easily, but grotesquely underrated. she was offered halle berry’s role in monster’s ball, but turned it down because she didn’t like that she had to “play a whore,” in that one sex scene with Billy Bob. I also think that she is beautiful and has a nice shape and is intelligent (she went to yale acting) and this is too much for Hollywood to handle. the image they want of black women is the obese, inarticulate, mammified Black women to keep the hierarchy in favor of white actresses…


  2. As an aspiring writer and scholar (presently in college), I constantly find myself having to represent the both the intelligence and beauty of the Black woman. Although I am proud to be able to represent both, it can be exhausting! Society has such low expectations of us–some of which is our own fault because of the poor choices we seem to make en mass. Just a look at the 70% unwed birth rate speaks volumes! We so undervalue ourselves, and it is unfortunate that more Black men do not stand up for us the way White males have traditionally stood up for White women. Black women have to rise up to take our rightful places in this world. Once we begin to love ourselves and hold each other in high esteem, the world will take notice!


  3. I couldn’t care less what YT thinks of Us, or how they try to depict Us. I once had a man try to make fun of my artwork, when he was losing to me in an argument. He wasn’t my man, was a fool, and couldn’t handle that I left him no room to prove a silly postulation. But when he started trying to tell me my art pieces were ‘ugly, anyway!’ it was so OBVIOUSLY NOT TRUE? That I gave him a look of, ‘Oh, Pleeeeeze, don’t EVEN try it!’ I laughed and HE HAD TO SNICKER and started laughing ALSO, cause he COULDN’T DENY MY WORK WAS GORGEOUS!!! But if I had had a LOW SELF WORTH? He would have won.

    THESE YT pEOPLE ARE OUR ENEMY, for goodness sakes!!! Whom We have forced to act like Our ‘friend’, and thus We shouldn’t wonder why they keep revealing, in whatever little way they have, that they HATE US. The question is, do We let them convince US that We are ‘Hateable’?


  4. His story (history) should have already taught
    us that we can wait until hell freezes over for
    white folks to see us as their intellectual
    and physical (beauty) equal.

    Since their Jesus is falsely portrayed all over the
    world as white, blond and blue eyed, their
    standard of beauty starts right there and everyone
    one else is measured by this.

    Black people have always put off our dreams,
    aspirations and goals hoping that they will
    give us a break. Black women, and women
    of color spend billions annually trying to conform
    to their standard of beauty. And now an increasing
    number of Black men are caught up in chasing the
    Clairol blond they see on TV.

    This madness has got to stop. We must embrace
    and love one another for who we are and what we are.
    Our forefathers created their own movies and distributed
    them for our own enjoyment while employing
    Black actors and actresses in the process.

    Neilsen reports that despite the bad economy, Black folks
    are on track to spending $1 trillion by 2015 see here http://bit.ly/pzCTDk
    These big Black churches that we have now can serve
    as our own theatres. We must look back to our history
    to have a larger vision of our future. See what this madness
    is doing to our children. Click here http://bit.ly/w2Gm4F
    The choice is ours.


  5. Any attempt to overshadow white women is a problem for white, Jewish, Hollywood. Why else do they promote skinny bi-racial women as the Black beauty norm as well as its ideal.

    Aint that something?

    White power within the mass media is oppressing future generations of Black girls and grooming Black boys to perceive dark-skinned, Negroid-featured black females as somehow abnormal.

    And all because white people actually do not like being white, and are made to white and uncomfortable every time a person of color comes into view. So, Black woman are gonna cause white folks all kinds of issues.


  6. Let’s stop this dangerous practice of referring to the Halle Berrys of the world as not black. She is no more black or white than most black ppl in this country. She just knows who her white ancestors are. She even states that she is black.

    Anyways, loved the article. I hope we make it a point to see the movie Joyful Noise WHILE IT IS STILL IN THE THEATERS. It is chock full of attractive black women in actually love scenes (wow!).


  7. This was a great article. Hollywood does it’s best to downplay the beauty of black women. Black women are the finest women on the planet. They know that,so they don’t ever want the black woman to get her shine!


  8. They do their BEST to downplay our beauty..so what else is new? I think they did it so they woukd keep the money in the family years ago. If the mulatto women were raped by the white men. What would their kids be? WHITE! the jim crow laws were made to seperate. BTW i was looking for that crazy mammy pic with the white man the other day: where did you find it?….as a side note: Jesus Was NOT BLACK but the people who were, was described as black in the Bible: a man named Simon, but since there were 3 Simons. He was described as Black Simon… To be different from Peter..Zippoeah Moses wife who probably looked like Alek Wek…(you should read how they tried to make her white on youtube) they said Moses had TWO WIVES..LOL…they cant believe he had only one and she was black…look what GOD did to Miriam when she complained about her color


  9. I am a black woman who dates interracially in real life and I love seeing on-screen interracial romances between beautiful black women and handsome non-black men. That really makes my heart smile. 🙂

    However, I have noticed that even when they allow black women to be part of shows where they are appealing, if they are in a relationship with a non black man, they always find some petty reason to break them up. I.E.,’Danny and Lacey'(Twisted) Lacey realizes that “It’s always been Jo”(the blonde girl) and they break up.

    ‘Todd and Evangeline'(One Life To Live). Evangeline falls into a mysterious coma(which she never comes out of) the day before they are to marry.

    ‘Jeremy and Bonnie'(Vampire Diaries). They both die at some point. Then Bonnie sacrifices her life to bring Jeremy back. She has success reviving him, but at this point, she ends up trading places with him and is dead. They can see and communicate with each other, but not FEEL each other. So, no sex, kissing, or touching(What era is this the 60’s?)

    ‘Lalah and Christian'(One Life To Live). Lalah disappears months before they are to get married. When Christian finally locates her, he learns that she has run off with and fallen in love with another man on some remote island they once vacationed on.

    They always find some reason to break the black woman/white man relationships up and make them prefer the white lady over the black lady. It’s totally unfair and biased.

    I have noticed since I was 8 years old, how the media has been conveying the message to black women and girls that we’re 4th banana to White and Latin Women. It’s not true of course! We ARE ALL EQUALS.

    God will make it all right some day. Black girls will get our due and be appreciated, cherished and recognized the way we deserve to be. Racial harmony will conquer all. 🙂


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