The actress bested fellow nominees Olivia Colman, Maria Bakalova, Amanda Seyfried and Glenn Close

By Alexia Fernández
April 25, 2021 10:20 PM
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Youn Yuh-jung has taken home the Oscar!

The 73-year-old won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her performance in Minari during Sunday night's Academy Awards. Also nominated in the category were Olivia Colman (The Father), Maria Bakalova (Borat Subsequent Moviefilm), Amanda Seyfried (Mank) and Glenn Close (Hillbilly Elegy).

Youn addressed her fellow nominees as she accepted the honor, saying, "We played a different role, so we cannot compete [with] each other. Tonight I'm here as just ... I have just a little bit [of] luck. I think maybe, I'm luckier than you."

YUH-JUNG YOUN Minari Academy Awards
Youn Yuh-jung
| Credit: ABC

Youn also thanked her "two boys who made me go out and work." "This is the result, because Mommy worked so hard," she continued.

Along with bringing home her first Oscar, Youn experienced another first on Sunday: meeting Brad Pitt, who presented her with the award. "Finally! Nice to meet you," she said to Pitt, 57, upon taking the stage.

Youn portrays the indomitable matriarch of Lee Isaac Chung's Minari, which follows an Asian family as they leave California for Arkansas to follow their American dream of owning a farm.

Youn, who has been acting in South Korea for over 50 years, is the first Korean actress to ever win a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. She told Deadline earlier this month that making history as the first South Korean actress to be nominated was "very stressful."

"I was just very happy being nominated. I never even dreamed about being nominated for an Oscar," she said. "People will be very happy for me if I get the win, but it's very stressful. It's not like I'm representing the country by going to the Olympics, but I feel like I'm competing for my country. It's stressful."

steven yeun in Minari
Credit: Josh Ethan Johnson

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Youn has been called South Korea's Meryl Streep but the actress insists she is only herself.

"I feel sorry for me and for Meryl Streep — she doesn't know me!" Youn told the outlet, laughing. "To be honest with you, I don't like to be compared with somebody. I don't like to be the competition. I admire her work and everything, but there's a story for her and there's a story for me. I'm Korean."

The 93rd Academy Awards are airing live on ABC at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.