Hollywood trailblazer Anna May Wong to be first Asian American featured on U.S. currency
Anna May Wong, the groundbreaking Asian-American filmmaker who has been a part of the documentary film scene for decades, is set to become the first Asian-American to be featured on actual U.S. currency. Wong — who was named the 2019 American Cinematographer of the Year by The Hollywood Reporter — recently announced that she is working with the Federal Reserve on the production of a commemorative coin featuring her iconic photo on the reverse side.
The coin is a “public service program,” according to the Federal Reserve, and will be released as the “Anna May Wong-Federal Reserve 2018 Coin.” The Mint has no plans to create a special edition coin of the coin, but Wong has been in touch with the Reserve about her idea to create a special collector coin.
“As the only Asian-American woman working in Hollywood, Ms. Wong’s extraordinary accomplishments and dedication to creating opportunities for women, particularly in film, have made her an internationally recognized cultural icon,” said the Reserve’s Assistant Secretary for Research and Statistics, James Fan, in the release announcing the coin. “Ms. Wong’s work in the documentary film and television industries, particularly the documentary ‘Boys Don’t Cry,’ and her commitment to improving the lives of Asian Americans, particularly in the film industry, has also made her a public figure of national note.”
Wong, who began her career as a documentary director, has won five Academy Awards, six Golden Globes, four Screen Actors Guild Awards and two Emmys. She made history with her groundbreaking 2017 documentary and subsequent Netflix series, “Boys Don’t Cry,” which won a National Board of Review Award, a 2017 Critics’ Choice Award, a 2017 Emmy and an NAACP Image Award. The series is an adaptation of the 2000 memoir by Miriam Toews, and featured the voices of Miriam’s three sons, Adam, Andrew and Jeremy, as well as her other sons,