The Deeper Meaning of Michelle Yeoh’s Refusal to Get Off Golden Globes Stage After Exit Music

The star won the best actress award for her role in ‘Everything Everywhere All At Once.’

Michelle Yeoh poses with Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy Golden Globes award.

Michelle Yeoh won the Golden Globe award in the Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy category on Tuesday, Jan. 10. The Everything Everywhere All At Once star gave a moving acceptance speech that was rudely cut off by exit music, and the way that the 60-year-old handled it spoke volumes.

“Whew! O.K. I’m just gonna stand here and take this all in,” she said. “Forty years, not letting go of this. So just quickly, thank you Hollywood Foreign Press for giving me this honor. It’s been an amazing journey and incredible fight to be here today, but I think it’s been worth it.”

In the film, Yeoh plays Evelyn Quan Wang, a Chinese-American immigrant who is desperately trying to save her laundromat business.

The Crazy Rich Asians star thanked the “goofy, insanely smart and wonderful geniuses” of the film, directors and screenwriters Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, who “had the courage to write a very ordinary immigrant Asian woman, mother, daughter.”

“When I first came to Hollywood, it was a dream come true until I got here. Because look at this face,” she said. “Someone said to me, ‘You’re a minority’ [and] ‘You speak English?’ And then I said, ‘Yeah, the flight here was about 13 hours long, so I learned on the way.’”

Yeoh is the second Asian American woman to win in the category, after Awkwafina in 2020 for her performance in The Farewell.

“As time went by—I turned 60 last year—and I think all of you women understand this as the days, years, numbers get bigger, the opportunities get smaller, as well,” she added. “Then along came the best gift: Everything Everywhere All at Once.

As the exit music began to play, Yeoh turned and said, “Shut up, please. I can beat you up, O.K.” Then she laughed and continued speaking.

The moment went viral, and for Asian American women everywhere, who are too familiar with being cut out of spaces, Yeoh’s remarks meant the world.

“I was given this gift of playing this woman who resonated so deeply with me and with so many people because at the end of the day, in whatever universe she was at, she was just fighting for love for her family,” the Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star continued. “This movie, for me, was such an homage to so many women like that around us who are sometimes invisible, who we take for granted.”

Fans expressed their support in the comments of the YouTube video of her speech.

“She deserved all the time in the world on that stage,” someone wrote. “She’s a legend.”

“I literally grew up with this lady. As a child, I would tune in every Saturday for Kung Fu Theatre which always showed Jackie Chan movies,” another fan added. “Then James Bond, Crouching Tiger, Star Trek episodes, Crazy Rich Asians and finally Everything Everywhere All At Once. I have to say, I don’t know if I have ever been more proud of a person I don’t know. She brought a lot of joy to many people and generations.”

Yeoh shows no signs of stopping. She is currently filming Wicked with Ariana Grande and will appear in Avatar 3. Both films are slated to release in 2024.

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Ananya Panchal


Ananya Panchal is a NYC-based Lifestyle & Trending News writer at SI Swimsuit. Before joining the Swim team, the Boston University Alum worked for culture & entertainment beats at Bustle, The San Francisco Chronicle and the TODAY Show. When Ananya is not writing or doom-scrolling on social media, she can be found playing sudoku, rewatching One Tree Hill or trying new restaurants. She's also a coffee and chocolate (separately) enthusiast.