Anna May Wong will be the first Asian American present in the US currency

Pioneering Chinese-American actress Anna May Wong will be the first Asian American to appear in the US currency as part of a program that includes prominent women in American neighborhoods.

Wong, who is considered the first Chinese-American movie star in Hollywood, is the fifth and last woman to appear individually in a quarter this year.

The quarter, which goes into general circulation on Monday, will see President George Washington on one side and Wong on the other.

An American Quarter with Anna May Wong.US Mint

Ventris C. Gibson, director of the US Mint, called Wong “a courageous supporter who advocated greater representation and more multidimensional roles for Asian American actors.”

“This quarter is designed to reflect the breadth and depth of Anna May Wong’s accomplishments, as she has overcome the challenges and obstacles she faced throughout her life,” Gibson said in a statement.

Wong, whose birth name was Wong Liu Tsong, was born in Los Angeles in 1905 to Chinese immigrants, according to IMDB. She was cast in her first role at age 14 as an extra in the movie “The Red Lantern” and she continued to play in minor parts until her starring role in “The Toll of the Sea” in 1922.

Wong had a substantial acting career despite the limited roles available to Asian-born actors in Hollywood at the time and anti-hybridisation laws that prevented her from kissing any person of another race, according to the New York Historical Society Museum. and Library.

He has worked in theater, film and television, appearing in over 60 films, including silent films and one of the earliest made in Technicolor.

She also became the first Asian-American leading actress on an American television show, “The Gallery of Madame Liu-Tsong,” in which she played a Chinese detective.

Wong appeared on stages in London and New York and eventually traveled to Europe to work in British, French and German films after suffering discrimination in the United States

She was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960. She died in 1961 at the age of 56.

“She is remembered as an international film star, a fashion icon, a pioneer of television and a champion for greater representation of Asian Americans in film. She continues to inspire actors and directors today, “the United States Mint said on her website.

The American Women Quarters Program began this year and includes five women each year through 2025, including native Hawaiian hula teacher Edith Kanaka’ole in 2023.

Gemma Chan, best known for her roles in “Crazy Rich Asians” and “Eternals,” will play Wong in an upcoming biopic about the star’s life; she is also the executive producer of the film.

“A dream!” Chan said on Instagram.

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