Friday, May 27, 2016
The U.T.C.: Ziyi Zhang
Back in 2000, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon made a splash here in the States. It was a box office smash, won several Oscars, and introduced audiences to a discovery named Ziyi Zhang who played the ferocious yet young and naive warrior Jen.
Since then, she's found a balance between American films and Chinese films, starring in Rush Hour 2 along with Hero and House of Flying Daggers where she was BAFTA nominated. Yet she would never really pop here in the States because as a lot of us know, Hollywood is a place that thinks Asians exist in stories pertaining to Asian culture.
When it seemed like Zhang would get Oscar nominated for a story pertaining to Asian culture with Memoirs Of A Geisha, collecting a Globe, SAG, and BAFTA nod, she still unfortunately missed out despite the film picking up a handful of Oscar wins and nominations. Even if Zhang wouldn't have derailed the Reese Witherspoon train, her being nominated would've at least added some diversity to the Best Actress category.
For quite some time, she's stuck to Chinese films. But thankfully J.J. Abrams recently came a calling, casting her in the sci-fi film God Particle opposite David Oyelowo, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Chris O'Dowd. Sci-Fi might not be the Academy’s number one genre. But the film at least thankfully has Zhang back in the American spotlight.