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Gemma Chan and Olivia Munn honored for their work in the Asian American community

Actresses Olivia Munn and Gemma Chan received awards for being an inspiration to the Asian American community. On Wednesday in New York, at the Apex for Youth Inspiration Awards Gala, the two women along with Credit Karma founder, Kenneth Lim, were given special awards for being a positive role model for Asian Americans, reports AOL. Apex is an organization that helps underserved and immigrant Asian communities in New York City. The three Asian role models were celebrated for their contributions to the Asian community.

Gemma Chan had an amazing last year and continued to do so this year. Last year, she starred in the box office hit “Crazy Rich Asians” which was the first major motion Hollywood picture with an all Asian cast since the “Joy Luck Club.” She also starred in this year’s blockbuster “Captain Marvel” and she has signed on to star in multiple projects. Ever since her big break, she has been vocal about making Hollywood more diverse.

“I feel very fortunate to have had the last year that I’ve had and to be part of these projects which have shifted the needle in terms of representation,” she said. “I think it’s important that we keep pushing forward. To me, this isn’t just a passing trend. 

“It’s about the fact that audiences really want authenticity in storytelling. Our storytelling is richer and stronger when it’s coming from a greater number of viewpoints.” 

Olivia Munn had a rough last year. Before her movie “The Predator” premiered, she found out that she was working with a registered sex offender on the movie. Munn called out the director Shane Black and the studio for not informing her she was working with a sex offender. Consequently, this led to the sex offender’s scene being cut out of the movie. However, she felt alone in this fight because she felt her co-workers were not by her side.

At the 27th annual Apex awards show, she recalled her mother gave her a call after she went public with the details of the incident.

“The thing about my mom is that she’s always been very blunt and that’s something I’ve always loved because there’s no hidden meaning, it’s always getting to the truth of things. My mom was always scary to us as kids — she was the disciplinarian — and my sister is a badass lawyer and super scary in our family, too,” Munn explained, according to WWD. “She’s like, ‘You know, your sister and I were talking. We were wondering, when did you become so fearless?’ I was like, ‘What do you mean, mom? You’re pretty scary yourself.’ She’s like, ‘No, no, I know how to scare people — but I don’t think I would have done what you did. I’m so proud that you’re fearless. No matter what I taught you, that’s something that you had in yourself.”

Munn continued, “I was never quiet. I was smart because I’m not gonna speak about things publicly — up until 2017, before Me Too, people didn’t even care. People didn’t believe women. But privately, I always talked about it. I’ve always been emboldened to speak the truth, that’s something my mom instilled in me. It’s just that now, people are listening.”

Gemma Chan took to Instagram to say she was “honoured to receive the 2019 Inspiration Award.” Additionally, she stated some dire facts about Asians in New York. For instance, she said that “1 in 2” Asians are born in poverty in the city.

Congratulations to Gemma Chan and Olivia Munn on their awards for helping Asian Americans out by being so inspirational.

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