This biography by Carlton Jackson tracks the joys and challenges of Hattie's life and career, and suggests that Hattie was an "unwitting reformer" ~ helping to change the racist conventions of the entertainment industry by example rather than words.
In 2010, actress Mo'Nique won the Best Supporting Actress Academy Award for her role in the film Precious (2009). She began her acceptance speech by thanking Hattie "for enduring all that she had to, so that I would not have to." In an additional homage, Mo'Nique wore a royal blue dress and gardenias in her hair ~ paying tribute to Hattie's Oscar ensemble in 1940. When asked about her fashion choices on the red carpet, Mo'Nique said to a reporter: "Hattie McDaniel, I feel you all over me, and it's time the world felt you all over them." In the 70 years between Hattie’s and Mo’Nique’s wins, only three other black actresses ~ Whoopi Goldberg, Halle Berry and Jennifer Hudson ~ had taken home Oscars.