Michelle Yeoh reveals 'best thing' about awards season success
Michelle Yeoh believes the "best thing" about her awards success is she is no longer only receiving scripts for "Asian-looking" characters.
The 60-year-old star triumphed in the Best Actress category at a string of ceremonies this year, including the Oscars, Screen Actors Guild Awards and Golden Globes for her role as Evelyn Quan Wang in 'Everything Everywhere All At Once', and she is pleased to be offering a wider variety of roles.
Speaking during the Kering Women in Motion talks at Cannes Film Festival, she said: "The best thing that has happened is I receive a script that doesn’t describe the character as a Chinese or Asian-looking person.
"We are actors. We are supposed to act. We are supposed to step into roles that are given to us and do our job as best we can. That, for me, is the biggest step forward.”
Michelle reflected on her first time at Cannes over 20 years ago with 'Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon' and said she felt it was "quite obvious" Hollywood wasn't ready to celebrate Asian actors back then.
She said: “There were so many great Asian, Chinese movies that came out at that time.
“But if you look at all the films that get nominated here in Cannes and get awards, very rarely, especially at the Oscars…they would nominate best director, best film, everything. You wonder how do you get there without the actors? So, it seems a little odd.
“When ‘Crouching Tiger’ came out, people were saying, ‘No one in America will watch this film because they don’t know how to read subtitles.’ But guess what? Americans do know how to read.”
And she believes 'Everything Everywhere All At Once's success is proof that audiences are interested in diverse storytelling.
She said: “It’s just a matter of pushing the envelope and refusing to say that this is the ‘normal way.’ In the ‘normal way,’ would ‘Everything Everywhere All At Once’ would have been nominated? Chances are no, five to 10 years ago."