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VIDEO: Rita Moreno on Her Career, Racism, WEST SIDE STORY, and More


"I think that perseverance is my middle name," she said.

Rita Moreno recently sat down with 60 Minutes to talk about her exceptional career, enduring racism, West Side Story, and more.

In the interview, Moreno speaks with Bill Whitaker about the turmoil she went through early in her career, her 1961 portrayal of Anita in "West Side Story," and her new role in Steven Spielberg's upcoming adaptation of the Broadway classic.

Reflecting on how she achieved the level of success she has found, Moreno said, "I think that perseverance is my middle name. It's just something-- truly, that I think I inherited from my mom."

She talked about the struggles she faced as a child at the beginning of her career, including being sexually abused by her agent when she was a teen.

"I want women to know that all the awards in the world will never make up for the things I have experienced in my life," she said. "The be-all and end-all is respect and self-respect which took me a long time to earn."

Finally, Moreno discussed the upcoming remake of West Side Story, directed by Steven Spielberg, who made a point to cast only Hispanic actors as the Puerto Rican characters.

"I think Hollywood has changed," Moreno said. "I think there are still things yet to be addressed. The representation that Hispanics get is almost nil. There are so many talented people among Hispanics. Jennifer Lopez can't be the only one."

Watch the full interview below.

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