Miyoshi Umeki Overview:

Actress, Miyoshi Umeki, was born on May 8, 1929 in Otaru, Japan. Umeki died at the age of 78 on Aug 28, 2007 in Licking, MO and was laid to rest in Boone Creek Cemetery in Licking, MO.

HONORS and AWARDS:

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Miyoshi Umeki was nominated for one Academy Award, winning for Best Supporting Actress for Sayonara (as Katsumi) in 1957.

Academy Awards

YearAwardFilm nameRoleResult
1957Best Supporting ActressSayonara (1957)KatsumiWon
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Miyoshi Umeki Quotes:

Wang Ta: Would you like to dance?
Mei Li: I don't know how, but I will walk around with you while you dance.


Mei Li: [to Wang Chi-Yang] This is beautiful and very outspoken.


Mei Li: Very pretty.


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Best Supporting Actress Oscar 1957






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Miyoshi Umeki Facts
Was already famous as Nancy Umeki in Japan with several hit songs and film appearances to her credit before coming to the U.S. in 1955.

One of eight actors of Asian descent nominated for an Academy Award in an acting category. The others are Sessue Hayakawa nominated for The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957), Mako nominated for The Sand Pebbles (1966), Ben Kingsley who won Best Actor for Gandhi (1982), Haing S. Ngor who won Best Supporting Actor for The Killing Fields (1984), Pat Morita nominated for The Karate Kid (1984), Ken Watanabe nominated for The Last Samurai (2003) and Rinko Kikuchi nominated for Babel (2006).

As of 2011, she is the only person of East Asian descent to win an Academy Award for acting.

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