Hollywood trailblazer Anna May Wong to be first Asian American featured on U.S. currency
Anna May Wong, the trailblazing Asian American actress who appeared in such acclaimed films as “The Color Purple” and “Shaft,” as well as the television show “Touched by an Angel,” will be the first Asian American actress and first Asian American woman to ever appear on the United States’ currency, NBC announced Monday.
According to a statement from the network, Wong, who was born in San Francisco, will be featured on the nation’s largest circulating bank note. Wong will appear on the $2 bill in the U.S., as well as the $5 bill and $ $50 bill.
Wong will also have a limited-edition $100 bill featuring her face on the reverse. The new $100 bill will be the first bank note in the U.S. to feature Wong’s face on the reverse, NBC said.
“I am thrilled to be joining the ranks of the few notable individuals who have had a bank note made,” Wong said in a statement. “I am excited to be able to see this bank note that has my face prominently displayed on the reverse.”
Wong’s presence on U.S. currency comes two months after she received a Presidential Medal of Freedom, an award that is presented to Americans who have made extraordinary contributions to public service and the enhancement of national character. On the way to the Oval Office to present the award, President Obama cited Wong as one of his personal heroes.
“Anna May has been my personal hero and the inspiration for so many things I’ve done in my life,” President Obama said at the White House medal awarding ceremony. “I’m very grateful to Anna in all of the ways she’s blessed my life. It’s a role model for me.”
Wong also appeared on ABC’s “Shooter” earlier this year in an episode that chronicled the deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas. She was joined in the episode by fellow acting family members Shonda Rhimes, Robin Williams,