Asian Reporter, V30, #02 (January 20, 2020), page 9.
Awkwafina makes Golden Globes history with
Farewell acting win
By Jonathan Landrum Jr.
AP Entertainment Writer
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Awkwafina said she had a
"mind-blowing" experience after learning backstage she made
history at the Golden Globes.
The rapper and actress became the first woman of Asian
descent to win a Golden Globe for best actress in a musical or
comedy film for her starring role in The Farewell. She’s
best known for her comic role in Crazy Rich Asians.
Awkwafina believes she has more to prove.
"It’s pretty mind-blowing," she said. "It feels incredible.
There’s also another feeling that you are going to do more. I
hope this is just the beginning."
Awkwafina shifted course to play a young woman in a Chinese
family that is keeping their matriarch’s cancer a secret from
her in director Lulu Wang’s The Farewell. She said she
particularly related to the film.
"Immigrants in this country who were raised to feel very
American ... and when we go back where, you know, we’re told
that you don’t belong here and you go back to where you belong,"
she said. "You feel like a stranger there and this constant
feeling of being lost in translation. And I think that’s what
really resonated with me in The Farewell.
The win is part of a breakout two-year run for the
31-year-old actress, who had a breakthrough year in 2018 after
appearances in Crazy Rich Asians and Ocean’s 8.
* * *
Awkwafina gets second season of new cable
network comedy series
By Beth Harris
The Associated Press
PASADENA, Calif. — Awkwafina may not have an Oscar
nomination, but the breakout star has already secured a
second-season renewal of her new Comedy Central series.
"Awkwafina is Nora from Queens" debuts January 22. The
network said it was adding a second season for the show based on
Awkwafina’s real life growing up in the New York borough of
Awkwafina joined Jennifer Lopez, Eddie Murphy, Robert De Niro,
and Beyoncé among the big names who didn’t receive a nod when
Oscar nominations were announced. Awkwafina became the first
actress of Asian descent to win a Golden Globe award in a
leading actress category for The Farewell.
"My emotional reaction to all of this is that I’m grateful
for this journey," she said about being shut out for the Oscars.
"I’ve had a pretty exciting ride and with this show and movies,
we’ve seen this year that representation existed. I can’t be
more grateful to do what I do and be recognized a little bit at
least is incredible."
Awkwafina, whose real name is Nora Lum, created the half-hour
show in which she co-stars with B.D. Wong, Bowen Yang, and Lori
Tan Chinn. Awkwafina also has writing and executive producer
duties. She was raised by her Chinese-American father and
grandparents alongside her cousin after her Korean-American
mother died when she was a child.
"I loved hanging out with my grandma in my 20s. Great food,"
Awkwafina told a TV critics meeting.
As a teenager, she came up with the name Awkwafina in a nod
to the awkwardness she felt and as an alter ego to her outwardly
"I made a point to draw on very true realities of my life
growing up. The character of Nora, I don’t think she’s overdrawn
in any way," Awkwafina said of the show. "I didn’t find a need
in her to go for anything that wasn’t truly herself. I hope it
inspires young kids not to be afraid to be themselves."