“Everything Everywhere All at Once” won seven Oscars, including for best picture and best screenplay. Daniel Kwan, who is Chinese-American, and Daniel Scheinert shared the award for Best Director. The film is about an immigrant family in the United States.
“The world is opening up to the fact that genius does not originate from individuals like us on stage, but rather, genius emerges from the collective,” Kwan said during his acceptance speech. “We are all products of our context. We are all descendants of something and someone, and I would like to acknowledge my context: my immigrant parents.”
Ke Huy Quan of “Everything Everywhere All at Once” also gave a tearful speech when accepting the Best Supporting Actor award, saying his journey “started on a boat” and with a year-long stay in a refugee camp. Quan, 51, fled his native Vietnam as a child and spent time in a camp in Hong Kong before settling in the United States.
“And somehow I ended up here, on Hollywood’s biggest stage,” he said to the sound of cheers from the crowd. “They say stories like this only happen in movies. I can’t believe this is happening to me. This – this is the American Dream.”
The real winners of this year’s Academy Awards are Asian American weirdos
The evening marked a milestone in the entertainment industry for Asian artists who have historically underrepresented in American film and television. A 2021 analysis by the University of Southern California Annenberg found that only 5.9 percent of speaking roles in films between 2007 and 2019 involved Asian Pacific Islander (API) characters. About 44 of the 1,300 films surveyed had leads or co-leads from Asian Pacific Islanders.
Neither of the main characters were women over 40, a phenomenon Yeoh, 60, seems to be aware of. “Ladies, don’t let anyone tell you that you’re ever past your prime,” she said during her acceptance speech.
Meet the Asian woman nominated before Michelle Yeoh for the Oscar for Best Actress
Composer MM Keeravani and artist-lyricist Chandrabose, both from India, won the award for Best Original Song, “Naatu Naatu”, which was performed on stage at the Academy Awards.
“The Elephant Whisperers” made history as the first Indian documentary to win an Oscar.