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Sandra Oh Just Became the First Asian Woman Nominated for a Best Actress Emmy

Sandra Oh

BBC America + James White + Corbis Outline

Sandra Oh has been nominated for best actress in a drama at the 2018 Emmy Awards. The beloved actress’s portrayal of MI5 agent Eve Polastri in BBC America’s quirky crime drama Killing Eve was critically acclaimed; the show was picked up for a second season before the first had even aired.

The nomination is the first for Oh in the category, and also the first for an Asian actress in that category.

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In May, Oh told ELLE.com that the lack of great roles for Asian-American actresses was “a heartbreak that I feel for my community of Asian-Americans and people who are just not represented, who are not reflected.” The actress said she’d internalized the bias to the extent that she didn’t even realize her agent wanted her to audition for the lead part in Killing Eve: “I’m quickly scrolling through my phone, trying to find my part, and I’m talking to my agent like, ‘I don’t get it. What’s the part?’ because I was like, I can’t play an assassin, obviously it’s gonna be a young hot girl, I don’t get it, what’s my part?”

Oh was nominated five years in a row, from 2005 to 2009, for her role as Dr. Cristina Yang in Grey’s Anatomy.

The other nominees in the category are Claire Foy (The Crown), Elisabeth Moss (The Handmaid’s Tale), Evan Rachel Wood (Westworld), Keri Russell (The Americans),and Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black).

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