Admiring Women in Entertainment — Michelle Yeoh

Michelle Yeoh makes history as the first Asian woman to receive an Oscar for Best Actress in her performance for “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” Graphic by: Maddie Bataille | Photo Editor

Michelle Yeoh is probably one of my favorite Asian actresses. As an Asian American, I love seeing Asian women in the TV and film industry because you don’t see them a lot.

According to Michelle Lhooq, a writer for Gentleman’s Quarterly, Yeoh was born as Yeoh Choo Kheng in Ipoh, Malaysia, on Aug. 6, 1962. Her parents are Yeoh Kian Geik, who was a lawyer and Janet Yeoh.

Lhooq also said that before acting, Yeoh wanted to be a ballet dancer. She studied at the Royal Academy of Dance in London, England. In her final year at the Academy, her dancing career ended when her mother put her into the Miss Malaysia beauty pageant.

“‘Oh god,’ Yeoh says when I mention her pageant queen past. ‘I’m going Mom, what on earth are you talking about? This is crazy!’ I wasn’t the one who wanted to put the dress on—I liked the rough and tumble more,’” according to Lhooq.

She also said Yeoh decided to compete to get her mom off her back but she won. Later on she got a call to shoot a commercial in Hong Kong which started her acting career.

In an interview from the talk show “Live with Kelly and Ryan,” Yeoh said the commercial was about a watch and she met actor and martial artist Jackie Chan.

“I was given an opportunity to do a commercial in Hong Kong and it was with Jackie Chan. I remember they said ‘Oh we’re doing this commercial with Sing Lung.’ At the time, I couldn’t speak Cantonese or read Chinese so when I was in the makeup chair, I saw him. I was like oh my god, that’s Jackie Chan,’” according to Yeoh. said that after the commercial, she went on to film many movies including “Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” “Crazy Rich Asians,” “Tomorrow Never Dies” and her newest one “Everything Everywhere all at Once.” 

My favorite one out of these films has to be “Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” as I am a Marvel fan. added that Yeoh has won many awards and been nominated for others throughout her life. Her most recent award was an Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role for “Everything Everywhere All At Once.”

Not only did she win the award, but according to ABC7 on, she was the first Asian woman to receive it. However, Yeoh was not the only one who was happy about it, her mother was too.

ABC7  said Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, held an Oscar 95 watch party. As her family watched Yeoh walk to the stage, they screamed and jumped up and down.

“Janet Yeoh cried for joy when the Oscar was announced for her little princess,” ABC7 said.

Michelle Yeoh is just an inspiration to me. Her talent is impeccable and the fact that she does martial arts without prior training just makes me love her even more. She can put herself into any role and kill it. I encourage you to check her out because I know you’ll love her too.