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Guadalupe "Lupe" Ontiveros (September 17, 1942 a?? July 26, 2012) was an American film and television actress. Ontiveros acted in numerous films like Selena and television shows, often playing a maid or, more recently, an all-knowing grandmother. She was nominated for an Emmy Award for her work on Desperate Housewives and received critical acclaim for her role in Chuck and Buck, for which she won the National Board of Review award for Best Supporting Actress, and was also nominated for an Independent Spirit Award.


Ontiveros was born Guadalupe Moreno in El Paso, Texas, the daughter of Luz "Lucita" CastaA?A?n and Juan Moreno, middle-class Mexican immigrants who overcame a lack of formal education and were owners of a tortilla factory and two restaurants in El Paso. She graduated from El Paso High School and went on to study at Texas Woman's University in Denton, Texas, where she received a bachelor's degree in social work. She was raised Roman Catholic.
After her marriage, she and her husband moved to California to realize his dream of starting an automotive business. During a period of professional dissatisfaction with her social service career, Ontiveros was trying to decide whether to go back to school for a nursing degree when she saw an article about a need for local film "extras". With her husband's encouragement, she began with that simple job and parlayed it into a long stage and screen career. Prior to acting, Ontiveros worked for 18 years as a social worker, and she continued as an activist with many of the same causes with which she worked in that profession, such as domestic violence prevention and AIDS awareness and prevention, among other health issues.
Ontiveros once estimated that she had played a maid at least 150 times on stage and screen;[citation needed] she wanted to see more diverse roles available to Latina actors, noting "I'm proud to represent those hands that labor in this country. I've given every maid I've ever portrayed so

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