It wasn’t too long ago that we didn’t see Asian-American actresses graze the movie screen as the main lead. It wasn’t too long ago that we didn’t even see them on a television show either. We want to thank it’s safe to say that Asian-American representation in America was scarce, and their stories weren’t being told to amplify their stories. With actresses such as Brenda Song speaking out on not being “Asian enough” to be cast in a Hollywood film or late-night host Lily Singh celebrating how in 2019 she was the Asian woman to have her late-night show. As we said, it’s been taking us some time, and while the list is steadily growing, we wanted to celebrate these five queens who are helping build this foundation.
Her start may have begun as your favorite bubbly and sometimes air-headed accountant on the hit show, The Office in 2005, but what you don’t know is that she also served behind the scenes as a writer, executive producer, and director. Her career also brought us fresh stories in Hollywood, such as The Mindy Project. Along with her new hit show on Netflix, Never Have I Ever, which I binged in two-days because the storytelling of Hindu traditions and culture mixed with teenage drama was honestly refreshing.
Ali Wong is not your typical funny comedian mom. Her stand-ups will have you rolling over laughing with how raw and honest they are. This break-out star started her career as a writer for sitcoms and popular favorites such as ABC’s Fresh Off the Boat. While still writing for your on-screen preferences, she put out a Netflix comedy special entitled, Baby Cobra in 2016. Not to mention she did this while 7-months pregnant. Then turned around and did it again while pregnant (yes, still) with her second child for another hit comedy special entitled, Hard Knock Wife in 2018. Since then, we have seen more of her, and honestly, we can’t get enough.
Constance Wu is becoming a fan favorite, and we love how she captured our hearts in 2018’s blockbuster hit, Crazy Rich Asians. Not to mention starring in the first sitcom to showcase Asian-American culture. While her fan base is growing, so is our love for her and her dimensional roles.
The YouTube star turned media personality didn’t become a fan-favorite overnight. With her success on the once-popular app, Vine, she took her talents to create random shopping ventures and skits, showcasing her bubbly and energetic comedy skills. Now, we see this 23-year old star hosting red carpets for Vogue and appearing in her own YouTube premium series, Liza On Demand.
This young actress is becoming an overnight sensation with her quirky and lovable role as Lara Jean Convey on the hit Netflix movie, To All The Boys I’ve Ever Loved. The coming of age movie displayed how complicated teenage feelings are. Creating such a fandom around this story, that Netflix produced a sequel that shot to #1 overnight. We can’t wait to see where this young actress lands next.
While the playing field is diversifying and we have a chance to have a different view of the world from these actresses, personalities, and writers, we should take a moment to celebrate and give these queens their roses.