Everything Everywhere All At Once facts: Why did Oscar 2023 nominee Michelle Yeoh almost reject the movie?

Michelle Yeoh
Michelle Yeoh nominated in the 2023 Oscars' Best Actress category for her role in A24's Everything Everywhere All At Once (Image via IMDb)

Critically acclaimed Everything Everywhere All At Once's lead actor Michelle Yeoh disclosed that she nearly rejected Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert's sci-fi blockbuster due to her character's original name. Yeoh has been nominated for the Best Actress category in the 95th Oscars for her role as Evelyn Wang in the film.

Yeoh has bagged two SAG Awards and a Golden Globe for her role in A24's Everything Everywhere All At Once, while the film itself has managed to become the most award-winning film of all time, surpassing the previous records set by The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.

Aside from her lead role in the multiverse sci-fi, the 60-year-old actress appeared in Crazy Rich Asians, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, and The Witcher: Blood Origin, among other limited roles.


Michelle Yeoh insisted on her character's name-change for the Oscars-nominated Everything Everywhere All At Once and the filmmakers complied

youtube-cover

The leading lady of the most nominated film, Everything Everywhere All at Once, at the 2023 Oscars, Michelle Yeoh has revealed in the past that she almost turned down the pivotal role over her character’s initial name during the early stages of the production.

In an interview with Variety for the series Actors on Actors last December, Yeoh revealed that her iconic role, which furthered the film's success, almost didn't work for her because of the character’s name, Michelle Wang, in the initial pitch. She claimed that the issue occurred despite her being extremely content with the role and taking the creative lead in every other respect.

During the interview, the Crazy Rich Asians actress said,

"This is like a roller coaster, right? Put away your phones, put on your safety belts. With the Daniels, I had to see if they were certifiably insane, in the best possible way. It’s very important that I feel the director is a visionary and I’m one of their tools."

Even though Michelle Yeoh was overcome with emotion when she first read the script, she insisted on the change. For her, the decision was a make-or-break deal, and luckily, the filmmakers complied with her demands, renaming the character Evelyn Quan Wang.

"The only thing I said to them was, 'The character cannot be called Michelle Wang. They're like, 'But why? It's so you.' I'm like, 'No, I'm not an Asian immigrant mother who's running a laundromat. She needs her own voice.' That was the only thing. I'm like, 'If you don't change the name, I'm not coming in.'"

The Michelle Yeoh-starrer Everything Everywhere All At Once received multiple award nominations

youtube-cover

In the film, Michelle Yeoh's Evelyn Wang is a laundromat owner who travels through multiverses while attempting to uphold her business and reunite with her family. Wang must communicate with different versions of herself in every alternate universe to prevent a colossal disaster from happening.

The remaining cast members of Everything Everywhere All At Once include Ke Huy Quan as Waymond Wang, Stephanie Hsu as Joy/Jobu Tupaki, James Hong as Gong Gong, Jenny Slate as Debbie, and Jamie Lee Curtis as Deirdre Beaubeirdre.

Ke Huy Quan, alongside Michelle Yeoh, recently bagged an award at the 2023 Golden Globe Awards in the best supporting actor category and is nominated for the same at the 95th Oscars. Curtis, Hsu, and the Daniels are among the other stars associated with the film who have also been nominated for the upcoming ceremony.

Everything Everywhere All At Once garnered positive reviews ever since its initial theater debut about a year ago in March 2022 and went on to become A24's highest-earning picture to date, grossing $103 million worldwide.

Quick Links

Edited by Babylona Bora