Watch: Youn Yuh Jung Makes History As 1st Korean Actress To Win At Academy Awards + Shares Witty Speech

Youn Yuh Jung has made history!

The 93rd Academy Awards is being held on April 25 (local time) at Los Angeles Union Station and Dolby Theater. “Minari” was nominated for six awards at the awards including “Minari” for Best Picture, Steven Yeun for Best Actor, Youn Yuh Jung for Best Supporting Actress, Lee Isaac Chung for Best Director, Lee Isaac Chung for Best Original Screenplay, and Emile Mosseri for Best Original Score.

Youn Yuh Jung was announced as the winner of Best Supporting Actress, which was presented by Brad Pitt, the executive producer of “Minari.” Youn Yuh Jung has now become the first Korean actress and the second Asian actress to score an Oscar. Youn Yuh Jung was up against Maria Bakalova (“Borat Subsequent Moviefilm”), Glenn Close (“Hillbilly Elegy”), Olivia Colman (“The Father”), and Amanda Seyfried (“Mank”) for Best Supporting Actress.

Stepping on stage, Youn Yuh Jung humorously asked Brad Pitt where he had been while they were filming in Tulsa, adding that she was honored to finally meet him. She began her speech saying, “As you know, I’m from Korea. Actually, my name is Yuh Jung Youn. Most European people call me Yuh Yung, and some of them call me Yoo Jung. But tonight, you are all forgiven. Usually, when I’m living in the other part of the world, I just watch the television. It is the Oscars. But even on the television, just watching, like a television program for us. But me being here by myself, I cannot believe I’m here.”

After sharing that she had to “pull herself together,” she continued, “Tremendous thanks to the Academy members who voted for me. Next in the speech they usually say, thank you for the wonderful ‘Minari’ family. Steven, Isaac, Ye Ri, Noel, Alan. We became a family. Above all, Lee Isaac Chung, without him, I couldn’t be here tonight. He was our captain and my director. So tremendous thanks to you.

“See, I don’t believe in competition. How can I win over Glenn Close? I’ve been watching so many of her performances. All the nominees, five nominees, we are the winners for the different movies. We played different roles, so we cannot compete with each other. Tonight, I’m here because I have just a little bit of luck. Maybe I’m luckier than you. Also maybe, it’s American hospitality for the Korean actor? I’m not sure, but anyway, thank you so much.

“I’d like to thank my two boys who make me go out and work. So this is the result. Because mommy worked so hard. And I’d like to dedicate this award for my first director Kim Ki Young who was a genius director that I made a movie together with. My first movie. I think he would be very happy if he was still alive. Thank you very much. Tremendous thank you to everybody.”

“Minari,” directed by Lee Issac Chung and based on his real-life experiences, is about a family of South Korean immigrants who try to start a new life in rural America during the 1980s. The film stars Steven Yeun, Han Ye Ri, Alan Kim, Noel Kate Cho, Youn Yuh Jung, and Will Patton. Youn Yuh Jung played the role of Soonja, who moves to Arkansas, United States to help her daughter’s family settle down.

Youn Yuh Jung made her debut in 1966. She rose to stardom with the drama “Jang Hee Bin” in 1971 and made her film debut through director Kim Ki Young’s “Fire Woman” and “The Insect Woman.”

Congratulations to Youn Yuh Jung on the historic achievement!

Watch her full speech below:

Also check out her movie “Beasts Clawing at Straws” with subtitles here:

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