Celebra Books, a division of Penguin Group (USA), announced the acquisition of legendary film, television, and stage performer Rita Moreno's untitled memoir. Executive Editor Denise Silvestro acquired world rights to the book from Dan Strone, CEO of Trident Media Group. The book will be published in winter 2013.
In her memoir, Moreno will write about moving from Puerto Rico to New York as a young girl, discovering singing and dancing, acting in television shows like “Electric Company” and “Oz,” her Oscar-winning role in West Side Story, dealing with discrimination throughout her career, and coming to terms with her heritage and "otherness" in Hollywood. She will also share stories about dating Elvis Presley and Howard Hughes, the tumultuous romance with Marlon Brando that ended in her suicide attempt, and the joy of her 45-year marriage. Moreno is one of the few performers today who holds an Emmy, a Grammy, a Tony and an Oscar.
“I was born Rosita Dolores, became Rita, and was serially cast as Latina, Thai, Native American Indian, Eastern Indian, Gypsy, and Cajun...," Moreno writes. "I played a generic ethnic maiden with an all purpose foreign accent. I was a spit-fire so long, it is now time to Flame-Out! I lived through the hilarious days of early Hollywood Hyperbole — my first picture was So Young, So Bad, which was subtitled What Made Them this Way? I went on to dance with Gene Kelly, seduce Laurence Harvey (on screen), ‘service’ Yul Brynner and Jack Nicholson, and mingle with the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, Ava Gardner and Clark Gable. I am still kicking my 80-year-old legs and my career and life have never been better! After all the tumult of pretending to be someone else and a near fatal affair with Marlon Brando, I have landed on my feet — on stage and off. Happy at last in my own skin, I am Rosita Dolores from Puerto Rico, and proud of it!"
"The incomparable Rita Moreno is truly a force of nature and undeniably one of the greatest living legends in entertainment," says Raymond Garcia, publisher of Celebra Books. "Her fearless and fascinating memoir will most certainly be among her greatest contributions."
A performer for more than 60 years whose work encompasses film, television, and theater, Rita Moreno is one of the few artists to win an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony. She has also received a Golden Globe Award and a National Medal of Honor. Moreno recently concluded a sold-out run of her one-woman show, Life Without Makeup, at the Berkeley Repertory Theater in Berkeley, California, and is currently playing a Jewish mother on the TV Land series, Happily Divorced.