On Thursday, the 36-year-old actress nabbed a Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy nomination for her role in Crazy Rich Asians, marking the first time in more than 40 years that an Asian woman has scored the honor. The film itself was also nominated for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy.
Prior to Wu, Yvonne Elliman was just the third Asian woman to score a nod in the category for her work in Jesus Christ Superstar in 1974. Miyoshi Umeki came before her, getting a nomination in the category for her role in Flower Drum Song at the 1962 ceremony. The 1956 awards show marked the first nomination for an Asian woman in the category, when Machiko Kyo was recognized for starring in The Teahouse of the August Moon.
If Wu winds up with the Globe this year — she’s facing off against Emily Blunt, Charlize Theron, Elsie Fisher and Olivia Colman — she’ll be the first Asian woman to win the category.
In a statement to ET, Jon M. Chu, the director of Crazy Rich Asians, expressed great excitement over both Wu’s and the film’s nominations.
“Can I put emojis in a quote? Because 😮😭🙏❤️ Not in my wildest dreams did I ever think our movie would be embraced to this magnitude by the audience and now the HFPA,” Chu said. “What an honor to be included on such a beautiful list of diverse human experience stories amongst storytellers I have looked up to my entire life. I could not be more proud of our movie, our cast, our community and our industry. In response to Eleanor Young, we were always good enough.”
Wu was delighted by Thursday’s happy news, which she found out a bit after everyone else thanks to a technological mishap.
“What a morning to have had my phone on Do Not Disturb Mode till now,” she quipped in a tweet. “I’m ecstatic but also in shock! Thank you @goldenglobes !!!”
In a tweet on Thursday, Chu revealed his method for getting the news to Wu. “I jumped up and ran around the couch with my baby this morning when I heard,” he wrote. “Then I called you over and over until you woke up! So proud. So happy!”
In a second tweet, Chu called both Wu’s and the film’s recognition “the proudest moment” of his career.
Wu reacted to Chu’s sweet message, calling him “a true visionary and an extraordinary leader.”
The 76th Annual Golden Globes air Jan. 6 on NBC. Watch the video below for more on this year’s ceremony: