Youn Yuh-Jung Makes History After Winning Oscar for Best Supporting Actress

Youn Yuh-jung

Youn Yuh-jung gave an unforgettable speech after making history as the first Korean actress to win an Academy Award on Sunday night.

The 73-year-old star, who has 50 years of film and television credits, won best supporting actress for her performance in “Minari” — Lee Isaac Chung’s semi-autobiographical tale of a Korean family that immigrates to rural Arkansas in the 1980s.

Brad Pitt, whose company Plan B co-produced “Minari,” presented the award. Youn began her acceptance speech by playfully calling out his absence on set, according to Variety.

“Finally,” she said. “It’s an honor to meet you.”

Youn is the second Asian actress to win the category after Japanese star Miyoshi Umeki, who received it in 1957 for “Sayonara.”

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Youn played Soon-ja, the family’s feisty, unorthodox grandmother known for her herbal medicines and love for Mountain Dew soda.

In her speech, Youn recalled only watching the Oscars back home in South Korea, which made Sunday’s experience surreal.

“Me, being here by myself, I cannot believe I’m here … let me pull myself together,” she said.

Youn also seized the chance to share how her name is frequently mispronounced in her travels.

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“As you know, I’m from Korea. Actually, my name is Yuh-Jung Youn. Most European people call me Yuh Youn and some of them call me Yuh-Jung.” she said. “But tonight, you are all forgiven.”

Youn and “Minari” itself have received critical acclaim throughout the awards season, with the actor winning a Screen Actors Guild (SAG) award and a British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) award, according to CNN.

Youn also acknowledged her fellow nominees — Amanda Seyfried, Olivia Colman, Maria Bakalova and Glenn Close, whom she has long admired — on Sunday’s event.

She concluded her speech thanking her sons “who make me go out and work.” Backstage, the Associated Press asked her of the bump in Asian films.

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“It’s about time. It’s very nice to understand each other and we should embrace each other,” she said.

Twitter users also went wild over Youn’s speech.

Feature Images via A24 (left) and Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences / ABC7 (right; screenshot)

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