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West Side Story’s Rachel Zegler Gets Honest About Not Being Invited To The Oscars

Rachel Zegler in West Side Story
(Image credit: 20th Century Films)

Steven Spielberg's West Side Story is one of the most celebrated movies at this year's Oscars. Following the critical acclaim earned during its theatrical run, the bold musical remake is nominated in seven different categories, including Best Picture and Best Director. It's clearly a film that voters fell in love with – and yet for an undisclosed reason, the actual star of the movie, Rachel Zegler, was not invited to attend the Hollywood ceremony.

There is less than a week to go before the big show is broadcast around the world, but apparently the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has yet to contact the young actor about being an in-person presence. This oddity came to light thanks to Zegler herself, who wrote a pair of comments about the situation on a recent Instagram post. A follower remarked that they were excited to see what West Side Story's Maria would be wearing at the Oscars, and her initial blunt response was:

i'm not invited so sweatpants and my boyfriend's flannel

As you would expect, this revelation quickly inspired both outrage and questions from her fans and followers, who continued to post to the thread and tag her. She eventually returned to the comments section with a longer explanation of the situation.

According to Rachel Zegler, she reached out to the Academy about trying to get an invite to the Oscars, but her efforts were unsuccessful. She seems to have made peace with the situation, but she is also still holding out hope that circumstances will change and there will be a seat for her at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood on Sunday. She wrote:

idk y’all i have tried it all but it doesn’t seem to be happening :’) i will root for west side story from my couch and be proud of the work we so tirelessly did 3 years ago. i hope some last minute miracle occurs and i can celebrate our film in person but hey, that’s how it goes sometimes, i guess. thanks for all the shock and outrage— i’m disappointed, too. but that’s okay. so proud of our movie.

You can check out Rachel Zegler's Instagram post below, which she initially wrote as a photo-centric look back at the first three months of 2022:

Surely the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is going to be feeling a bit of pressure about this situation, so we'll just have to wait and see if anything changes and if the West Side Story star ends up getting an invite. It certainly has to be a situation that is easier to fix than the other controversies that have popped up this year – like the decision to axe eight categories from the television broadcast and feature a musical performance for a song that isn't among this year's nominees.

The 94th Academy Awards will be held this Sunday, with Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes hosting, and the broadcast set to air on ABC. Head over to our rundown of the 2022 Oscar Nominations to get a preview of what to expect, and use the days ahead to watch/stream the movies you haven't seen yet.

NJ native who calls LA home; lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran; endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.