Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

How ‘EEAAO’ Made International News And Oscars History

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at VCU chapter.

As someone who accidentally watched this film with my mom, “Everything, Everywhere, All At Once” is a truly unforgettable film. As “a film about laundry, taxes and exploring other universes,” “EEAAO” is equal parts lighthearted and dynamic, its concepts hard to grasp from a simple description. Since its release in March of 2022, social media has been completely bombarded with fan edits, audience testimonials and googly eyes as the heartfelt message hit the hearts of those who watched, making them think about life and those around them.

It is raunchy and silly and colorful and sad and fascinating. I loved it. And just as much as we as a generation loved “the multiverse sci-fi comedy,” so did the Oscars. This year “EEAAO” stole the show, making not only Oscars’ history but international headlines and creating general Asian-American exposure. Here are some of the ways “Everything, Everywhere, All At Once” changed the Oscars’ image while catapulting its message across the world.

oscar 3679610 1920?width=1024&height=1024&fit=cover&auto=webp
Felicity Warner / HCM
First Asian Women to Win Best Actress

Michelle Yeoh finally achieved an accomplishment many have been striving for for decades: she was the first Asian to win the Best Actress award in all nearly 10 decades of the Oscars’ existence. Yeoh’s family and friends watched on the other side of the world in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia as she beat out powerhouses such as two-time Oscar winner Cate Blanchett, Ana De Armas, Andrea Riseborough and Michelle Williams to win the award.

The billboards on display in the country referred to her as “the pride of Malaysia” ahead of her big win. “For all the little boys and girls who look like me watching tonight, this is a beacon of hope and possibilities,” Yeoh stated as she accepted her award.

“This is proof that dreams … dream big and dreams do come true.”

seven Wins, one Night

Taking home seven out of the 11 awards it was nominated for, “Everything, Everywhere, All At Once” achieved a coveted place on a list of films riddled with Oscar accolades. Accompanying “EEAAO” in having seven Oscar wins in one night as the following:

“Gravity” (2013)

“Shakespeare in Love” (1998)

“Schindler’s List” (1993)

“Dances with Wolves” (1990)

“Out of Africa” (1985)

“The Sting” (1973)

“Patton” (1970)

“Lawrence of Arabia” (1962)

“The Bridge on the River Kwai” (1957)

“The Best Years of Our Lives” (1946)

“Going My Way” (1944)

An Immigrant Wins

Arguably the most heartfelt story of the night came from Ke Huy Quan’s win for the year’s Best Supporting Actor. As a former child star featured in classic films such as “The Goonies” and “Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom” back in the 1980s, he finally got his flowers. Accepting his award with pure childlike excitement Quan stated, “My mom is 84 years old and she is at home watching. Ma, I just won an Oscar!” 

In celebration, it is easy to forget that his journey was not an easy one. Quan’s story “started on a boat” and that, after spending a year in a refugee camp, “somehow (he) ended up here on Hollywood’s biggest stage.” He went on to say, “they say stories like this only happen in the movies. I cannot believe this is happening to me — this is the American dream.”

The Second Asian Directorial “Hat Trick”

“Everything, Everywhere, All At Once” marks A24’s second best picture win after “Moonlight”‘s controversial victory over “La La Land” at the 2016 Oscar Awards (also known as “envelope gate”).

Yet with this year’s win, there was no denying the Daniels’ and their accolades as Kwan became the second Asian to pull off the “hat trick” in Oscar history after Bong Joon Ho’s wins in 2019 with his film “Parasite.” This is referring to winning best picture, director AND screenplay.

The film also set records in other Asian categories as it is also the fourth Asian directing winner and the third movie to win best picture with Asian producers.

Jamie Lee Curtis finally Wins

As many of us know and love her from “Freaky Friday” and the “Halloween” movie franchise, this was Jaime Lee Curtis’s FIRST Oscar nomination EVER. At 64 years old, she has done literally almost every genre over her decades in the film industry. However, “Everything Everywhere All At Once” finally got her the golden ticket.

When accepting her award, she went on to say, “I know it looks like I am standing up here on my own but I am not,” she said, getting emotional on stage. “There are hundreds of people and hundreds of people — we just won an Oscar…”

To all of the people who have supported the genre movies that I have made for hundreds and hundreds of thousands — we just won an Oscar together.”

Taylor Carey is a passionate writer and global citizen majoring in History and minoring in Political Science here at Virginia Commonwealth University. Taylor enjoys traveling, is a huge foodie and focuses her writing on social issues and current events. When she is not writing you can catch her fulfilling her Vice Presidential role as a Sigma Sigma Sigma sister and officer, cooking her favorite foods or in the Cabell Library working ahead on her homework!