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Rachel Zegler References Her Invitation Snub During the Oscars

Golden Globe award-winner Rachel Zegler might have only become famous last year with her first big role as Maria in the Steven Spielberg adaptation of West Side Story (for which she won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress), but the actress has quickly amassed a huge fanbase — and after her fans aggressively pressured the Academy online to give her an invitation to the Oscars, star Rachel Zegler did get an Oscars invitation…but less than a week before the Oscars, and as a presenter instead of a guest at Oscar night.

ariana debose d23

Ariana DeBose in ‘West Side Story’ as Anita. Ariana DeBose won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the Steven Spielberg movie. Credit: D23

Once she’d finally secured an invitation to the Oscars (with her movie West Side Story receiving seven Oscar nominations, and her co-star Ariana DeBose winning the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Anita), the actress and singer couldn’t let her initial invitation snub go without at least one sassy reference to it on Oscar night.

rachel zegler

Star Rachel Zegler Credit: @kaleteter

During her scripted presentation of the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects (alongside Jacob Elordi), star Rachel Zegler took advantage of Jacob’s line about being an Australian actor who never thought that he’d be onstage at the Oscars. “And I never thought that I would be here six days ago,” Rachel Zegler immediately added with a smile. “Dreams can come true and quickly, too.” Her comment received a laugh from audiences, and praise from her fans online.

The Academy Awards are known for their thinly-veiled drama (especially since the hosts of the Oscars often ‘roast’ or mock Oscar nominees in the audience a lot during their monologues, and the hosts of the 94th Academy Awards were no exception in that regard), but this year the drama and scandal was far less veiled than usual.

Academy Awards

Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes took the stage to co-host the 94th Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles and Hollywood. Credit: D23

Passive-aggressive comments from attendees or jokes from presenters went too far this year, resulting in actor Will Smith actually walking onstage and slapping comedian Chris Rock in the face after he made an insensitive joke about Will Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett-Smith.

Will Smith Slapping Chris Rock in the Face

Will Smith slapping Chris Rock in the face Credit: ABC

West Side Story star Rachel Zegler didn’t directly say anything negative about the Academy when she was initially snubbed for an invitation; instead, she stuck to fairly neutral platitudes and it was her fans on social media who were outraged at the news that a lead actress from an Oscar-nominated film wasn’t invited to the Oscars. In fact, the Academy itself often isn’t in charge of invitations, anyway; it was more likely that it was Disney who decided Rachel shouldn’t be invited, because she was in London at Pinewood Studios filming the new live-action Snow White movie (in which she is playing the classic Disney princess).

About Sharon

Sharon is from New England. She's a writer, animal lover, and, of course, a Disney Fanatic! Sharon's two main focuses in her work are Disney's correlations with pop culture and the significance of Disney princesses (which was the basis for her college thesis). When she's not writing about Disney, Sharon spends her time singing, dancing, and cavorting with woodland creatures.