After the Lana Condor thing happened, we were at a screening in New York, and a bunch of people kept going up to my publicist and the Daniels’ publicist, who are both Asian, and they were like, “Congratulations, your performance is incredible.” And they were like, “Huh?”
So listen, this ride is amazing, but that is real. We have not transcended this moment, right? James Hong [who plays Yeoh’s father] started acting at a time when people wouldn’t even say his name, they would literally just call him “Chinaman” and say “Get on your mark.” Michelle waited almost 40 years for her first chance of being No. 1 on the call sheet, and Ke left acting for [nearly] 20 years. As successful as this film has been, the biggest fear on the other side is “What if this is my last chance?”
The biggest thing I’ve learned from this past year is how to continue to show up for myself. This is not something I ever thought I would be in the conversation for, but I know I brought something to this project that is completely singular. Sometimes, things have made me want to just completely disappear into the background, but there are people who felt something in this character, people who are rooting for roles like this to exist, people who are rooting, also, for me to elbow more space or even just to stand here.