Sacheen Littlefeather sisters want her cut from 2023 Oscars
As one of the most memorable figures in Oscar history — Will Smith notwithstanding — Sachin Littlefeather is virtually assured a spot in the In Memoriam segment when the show airs Sunday, March 12, on ABC.
But her family instead let the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences forget about the late actress.
Rosalind Cruz, Littlefeather’s sister, told the Post on Monday that “the biggest blunder in the history of the Oscars” will continue to be publicly recognized.
“They will [include her] Because they need to cover for themselves,” Cruise, 65, said of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. “They are supporting a pretender and perpetuating lies and slander of our family and they don’t care.”
Littlefeather, who died of breast cancer in October aged 75, established herself in Oscar history in 1973 when she refused Marlon Brando’s best actor Oscar on his behalf. The “Godfather” actor chose Littlefeather to do so in protest of Hollywood’s mistreatment of Native Americans in the film.
“I’m Apache and I’m the chair of the National Native American Affirmative Image Committee,” she introduced herself in the speech.
But in the weeks after his death, Littlefeather’s sisters, Cruise and Trudy Orlandi, blasted the activist as a “race fraud” who fabricated his legacy to advance in Hollywood.
Cruise said she fully expects the awards show to honor her late sister despite DNA evidence disproving Littlefeather’s “lie” to 85 million Oscar viewers by claiming Apache.
“What is the academy going to do? Are they going to continue to try to save face and brush it all under the rug?” Cruz continued. “It wouldn’t surprise me one bit.
“I don’t think he should be mentioned at all – period. It’s a hoax and has nothing to do with the truth,” he gushes of his famous sister, Marie Louise Cruz. (Her parents were of Mexican and European heritage.) “She may be mentioned only as the woman who turned down an Oscar for Marlon Brando, who called herself Sachin Littlefeather, but was of Native American heritage. was not.”
In late October, Cruise detailed her family history to the Post, saying she watched in disbelief from her grandparents’ home in rural Salinas, California, in 1973, when her older sister appeared at the Oscars.
“He lied,” Cruz told the Post then.
Cruise and Orlandi also want the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures to remove its tribute to Sachin from its Los Angeles museum, where Littlefeather’s Oscar speech was held. Exhibition of the most famous moments of the award ceremony.
“We request that the academy close immediately and refrain from lionizing or perpetuating the myth of Sachin Littlefeather,” reads a February 22 letter from the sisters to the academy, which was obtained by The Post. “Any tribute to him should be removed to protect our family and the public from continued fraud.”
Cruise is now seeking a lawyer to explore possible legal action. He said both he and Orlandi face online harassment in light of Sachin’s outing as being of Mexican heritage.
“Now all his notoriety is coming back to us,” Cruise said of Littlefeather. “I don’t care what they say about me, but it affects my sister [Orlandi, 72]. This is a horror story for us as a family. “
In June, months before Littlefeather’s death, the Academy formally apologized to the actress, issuing a statement of reconciliation for her blacklisting after the Oscar stunt.
a “Academy Visual History with Sachin Littlefeather“A detailed interview with Jacqueline Stewart, director of the Academy Museum, includes a disclaimer.
“The content of oral history interviews is personal, experiential, and interpretive and, by its very nature, relies on individuals’ memories, perceptions, and opinions,” reads the disclaimer. “Interviews should not be construed as statements of fact.”
Littlefeather was also honored by the Academy in September, including its “long-awaited apology statement” and live Native American performances. video show.
Messages seeking comment were not immediately returned Monday, but the Academy Museum previously acknowledged claims disputing the late actress’ background.
“Neither the museum nor the Academy comment on the In Memoriam segment prior to the telecast,” an Academy spokesperson told the Post. We respectfully decline to comment on the sisters’ claim.”
In October, told the Post: “This is something that both Littlefeather and the Native American community have consistently addressed since the 1970s. Native American and indigenous identity is deeply complex and layered, particularly in the United States, and these communities have long battled erasure and misrepresentation. With the support of its Indigenous Alliance – an Academy member affinity group – the Academy recognizes self-identity.”
Cruz said Monday that the sisters’ Feb. 22 letter, advising the academy to “take the warning seriously,” went unanswered.
“No, absolutely not,” Cruz said when asked if he expected an answer. “These people have no moral compass. It’s an insult to Native Americans, and the Academy is supporting someone they know is a fraud.”