WESTDORF, Manhattan — An injustice is set to be righted on the Hollywood Walk of Fame after a documentary highlighted the lack of recognition for an influential star.
Juanita Moore is ready to finally get her own star on the Walk of Fame, over a decade after her death in 2014.
Before her long life ended at the age of 99, Moore paved the way for other black performers in Hollywood, but as a new documentary makes clear, Moore never received the recognition she so much deserved.
She received an Oscar for “Imitation of Life” in 1959 for playing a black housekeeper whose daughter passes as white.
She has made over 70 films but her name is unknown to so many.
“Her legacy was that she was persevering,” said her grandson, Kirk Kelleykahn. “She kept going. She never stopped.”
He calls the film he made about her “A Star Without A Star” because those in charge refused to give her a posthumous star until his documentary pressured them to include his grandmother.
“I’m glad she’s going to get one and I’m glad we stuck with the film,” said Kelleykahn. “But I think it should have been much sooner.”
The obstacles Kelleykahn faced in getting her this honor mirrored her own struggle in the 1950s.
“Those were different times,” says the late Sidney Poitier in the new documentary. “You had to behave in a certain stereotypical way to get a job, get a job, and keep a job, so it was slow going.”
After being nominated for the role of a maid, Moore made a decision.
“I didn’t want to carry the trays anymore,” says Moore in an interview in the documentary.
Moore refused to play such roles any longer and was unemployed for over a year.
“It was awful,” Kelleykahn said. “What it says about Hollywood is that they wouldn’t break the stereotype. You’ve got an Oscar nomination and, ‘Okay, we’re just going to keep you as a maid.'”
Moore returned to domestic roles but still managed to break through in parts like the nun she played on The Singing Nun.
A younger cast member, T’keyah Crystal Keymah, appears in the documentary and calls Moore “one of those people who not only looks like me, but made me proud to look like.” “
A Star Without A Star” calls Moore “a pioneer in a time and place where this was not allowed”.
The film alludes to a brief run Cinema Village in Manhattan from Friday, December 30th
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https://abc7.com/juanita-moore-documentary-a-star-without-village-cinema/12620005/ A Star Without a Star is the untold story of Juanita Moore’s legacy