And here’s why.
In the Primetime Emmy Awards’ 68-year history, only one actor of Asian descent has ever won an Emmy for acting.
It was in 2010, when Archie Panjabi won the award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her role as Kalinda Sharma on CBS’s The Good Wife.
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After winning her Emmy, Panjabi stressed the importance of seeing fully realized characters on television.
“Most of the roles I was ever offered and did play were so relevant to my ethnicity, and I’m very grateful for those opportunities. But I’ve always believed that I’d like to play a role where my ethnicity isn’t the most important thing,” she told reporters in the press room. “So to be given this opportunity to play such an interesting character where, up until now, we haven’t even mentioned her ethnicity, is a dream come true … I think it’s the way it should be for young people, to watch TV where the characters are from different backgrounds … but it’s not all about their race and background.”
After her 2010 win, Panjabi was subsequently nominated for an Emmy in the same category in 2011 and 2012 (both for her role on The Good Wife). 🎉🎊
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But if you’re wondering why there hasn’t been more recognition of actors of Asian descent at the Emmys, it’s in large part due to the lack of prominent roles for Asian actors in Hollywood.