Michelle Yeoh becomes first Asian Best Actress Oscar winner

Michelle Yeoh

Michelle Yeoh made history at the Oscars 2023 tonight (March 12), becoming the first Asian person to win Best Actress at the event.

The ceremony took place at Los Angeles’ Dolby Theatre tonight, with Everything Everywhere All At Once taking home the most awards.

Yeoh’s award for Best Actress was one of the film’s seven trophies collected, honouring her for her role as Evelyn Wang. “Thank you, thank you,” she said as she got up on stage to accept the award. “For all the little boys and girls who look like me watching tonight, this is the beacon of hope and possibilities – this is proof that [if you] dream big, dreams do come true.”

She added a message for women around the world, telling them not to “let anybody ever tell you that you are past your prime – never give up”. After thanking the directors the Daniels, studio A24, and the cast and crew, Yeoh turned her attention to her family.

“I have to dedicate this to my mum and all the mums in the world because they are the real superheroes,” she said. “Without them, none of us would be here tonight.”

As she wrapped up her speech, Yeoh added: “Thank you to the Academy; this is history in the making.” Yeoh is the first Asian person to win the award for Best Actress. She is also on the second person of colour to collect the trophy, following Halle Berry in 2002.

Everything Everywhere All At Once’s Ke Huy Quan also won his first Oscar tonight for his part in the movie. During his acceptance speech, he reflected on his journey to the awards show, calling it “the American dream”. Jamie Lee Curtis won Best Supporting Actress and called for “more women anywhere, anytime, all at once”, while the film was named Best Picture.

Elsewhere at the Oscars 2023, an “uncomfortable” red carpet interview with Hugh Grant has gone viral online after the star gave concise answers and appeared to raise his eyebrows at presenter Ashley Graham. Jimmy Kimmel also addressed last year’s Will Smith slap in his opening monologue, while Brendan Fraser won his first Oscar for The Whale.

Performances came from Lady Gaga, who delivered an emotional rendition of ‘Hold My Hand’, and David Byrne, Son Lux and Stephanie Hsu. Byrne wore the hot dog fingers from Everything Everywhere All At Once. Rihanna also received a standing ovation for her performance of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever‘s ‘Lift Me Up’.

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