Oscar winner Chloe Zhao, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, and actors Riz Ahmed and Olivia Munn have been named among the 100 Most Impactful Asians of the Year.
Officials at non-profit organisation Gold House have unveiled their annual A100 list of the top Asians, Asian-Americans, and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) who have been working to increase representation of their race and heritage in the public eye, with other honourees including K-pop stars Blackpink, H.E.R., Olivia Rodrigo, Gemma Chan, Kelly Marie Tran, and Simu Liu, the lead of the upcoming Disney/Marvel blockbuster Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.
Addressing the qualities displayed by each individual to make the cut over a challenging year, during which members of the AAPI community have faced increased instances of anti-Asian hate crimes, Bing Chen, president and co-founder of Gold House, said, “Our leaders can no longer just be great – they must be good. They can’t just represent us in celebration – they must also elevate us when we’re in pain.
“That’s why this year’s Gold House A100 List spotlights leaders who were excellent in achievement and eminent in activism. This is, in so many ways, the fight for our lives – and we need fighters who see that.”
Those selected for the A100 were picked by a panel of judges, including George Takei, Daniel Dae Kim, Michelle Yeoh, Lea Salonga, Bob Iger, and Michael B. Jordan.
Reacting to the news, actor Simu Liu told Variety: “It’s a tremendous honour to be recognised by my community. I’ve been fortunate enough to have worked on a number of definitive projects within the Asian diaspora, and have been a direct benefactor of the efforts of organisations like Gold House.
“I’m fiercely proud of my Asian American/Canadian heritage, and I’m extremely excited to continue showing the world what it means to be unapologetically Asian.”
“I want an Asian American movie to break a billion dollars at the global box office. But just one is not enough. I want to see more; I want to see seconds, and thirds, and fourths, and fifths,” he added. “We cannot settle for just ‘firsts.'”
And Sound of Metal Oscar nominee Riz Ahmed declared: “It feels great to be part of this list alongside all these incredible people. I’m excited to play my part alongside them in helping to stretch culture and take audiences with us to new places, both as an artist and through my (production) company Lefthanded.”
Rappers Anderson.Paak and Saweetie, actress Auli’i Cravalho, comedian Ronny Chieng, writer/director Lee Isaac Chung, tennis champ Naomi Osaka, TV personality Padma Lakshmi, and YouTube influencer Patrick Starr also make the A100 cut for 2021.
– Cover Media