Oscars: First Asian American Best Actress


Justina (Yijia) Liu, Staff Writer

On a historic night for diversity in Hollywood in 2023, Michelle Yeoh made history as the first Asian American actress to win an Oscar for Best Actress. Yeoh received the award for her powerful performance in Everything Everywhere All at Once, a film that explores the complexities of identity and the human experience.

Yeoh’s win is significant not only because she is the first Asian American actress to receive the prestigious award but also because it highlights the ongoing struggle for representation and inclusivity in the entertainment industry. For years, Hollywood has been criticized for its lack of diversity and the underrepresentation of people of color, particularly Asian Americans.

“She is really amazing and her art is great. As an Asian, I feel proud and feel like everything is possible” said freshman Koen Shum.

As Yeoh acknowledged in her acceptance speech, her win represents a beacon of hope for all Asians and who have been waiting for their moment to shine. She spoke directly to the young children who might have been watching the Oscars and seeing someone who looks like them being recognized for their talents and hard work.

Yeoh’s win comes at a time when the Asian American community is facing increased discrimination and violence, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans has highlighted the urgent need for greater representation and visibility in all areas of society, including the entertainment industry.

By breaking barriers and making history, Yeoh has shown that Asian Americans can and should have a place in Hollywood. Her win is a step in the right direction, but there is still much work to be done to ensure that all voices are heard and all stories are told.

In addition to her win, Yeoh has also been a vocal advocate for diversity and inclusivity in Hollywood. She has spoken out against the lack of opportunities for people of color in the industry and has called on Hollywood to do more to address the issue.

“I think it is really important for greater representation even on Broadway. I am very happy for Michelle and hope that more people can be like her,” said senior Shuying Chen. 

As Yeoh said in her acceptance speech, “For all the little boys and girls who look like me watching tonight, this is a beacon of hope and possibilities.” 

Her win is a reminder that representation matters, and that everyone deserves to see themselves reflected on screen. By celebrating diversity and embracing inclusivity, Hollywood can truly become a place where everyone has a chance to shine.


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