The United States will mint a coin engraved with the picture of actress Anna May Wong, who worked in Hollywood at a time of open prejudice and stereotyping, for the first time next week.
Anna May Wong, an actress, is scheduled to become the first Asian American to appear on US money. She will be featured on American quarters as part of an attempt to highlight prominent women. Wong, who is widely regarded as Hollywood’s first Chinese American film star, is the coin’s fifth and final female face this year.
Mint designer, who assisted in the coin’s creation, Emily Damstra said, “In addition to the hard work, determination, and skill that Anna May Wong brought to the profession of acting, I believe it was her face and expressive gestures that really captivated movie audiences, so I included these elements.”
On Monday, the quarter will go into public circulation. On one side, it will depict President George Washington, and on the other, Wong.
Wong was described as “a gutsy campaigner who championed for more representation and more multi-dimensional parts for Asian American actors” by Ventris Gibson, director of the US Mint.
She added that this quarter is intended to highlight the breadth and depth of Anna May Wong’s accomplishments, who surmounted challenges and barriers during her lifetime.
Mint Director Ventris Gibson stated that the fifth coin in their American Women Quarters Program celebrates Anna May Wong, a bold advocate who fought for improved representation and more multi-dimensional roles for Asian American performers.
Beginning this year, the American Women Quarters Program will showcase five women each year through 2025. Edith Kanaka’ole, a native Hawaiian hula teacher, has been recognized as one of the 2023 choices.
About Anna May Wong
Throughout her career, Anna May Wong appeared in over 60 films, including silent pictures and one of the first in technicolor.
Wong was also the first Asian American lead actress in a US television show, The Gallery of Madame Liu-Tsong, where she portrayed a Chinese investigator. After experiencing discrimination in the United States, she relocated to Europe to work in English, French, and German films. She was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960, but died the following year at the age of 56.
Gemma Chan, well known for her roles in Crazy Rich Asians and Marvel’s Eternals, will play Wong in a forthcoming biopic on the actor’s life.