Ipoh-born Michelle Yeoh won the Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role at the 95th Academy Awards held at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles today.
This is for her brilliant role as Chinese-American immigrant Evelyn Quan in the movie “Everything Everywhere All At Once”, who while being audited by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), discovered that she must connect with parallel universe versions of herself to prevent a powerful being from destroying the multiverse.
Yeoh, 60, created history by being the first Asian actress to win in this category.
Tinsel Town’s dollar hungry fraternity barely knew where Malaysia was as they hung round Jho Low’s largess. Likewise, ignorance of Michelle Yeoh’s own connections to the 1MDB story undoubtedly played into her good fortune at the Academy Awards.
Leo DiCaprio arguably missed his Oscar thanks to the exposure over Wolf of Wall Street which was bankrolled by Najib and 1MDB’s stolen money. Yeoh was lucky that few in Hollywood appear to know how she too was being bankrolled by Najib at the very same time and duly lent all her celebrity to support his G13 election prospects and talk up his subsequent regime.
However, everyone in Malaysia does – after all, she’s refused to apologise saying she was merely expressing her opinion in support of a politician she admires.
Today the staggering sums earned by her French boyfriend for taking on the role of ‘tourism ambassador’ under Najib (including to cover holiday trips for the duo) have again done the rounds on social media – and it has tainted the satisfaction most would feel about their local born actress winning an Oscar in a film brandishing such a classic aspirational Hollywood title – “Everything Everywhere All at Once”.
Ms Yeoh, who has long lived the life of a global sophisticate alongside her partner, Jean Todd, and spends little time in Malaysia, chose to play the victim claiming her Oscar on behalf of “people who look like me” and even older women.
She was spared the real life audit in her moment of triumph. However, according to disparaging material circulating back home, Yeoh is a daughter of privilege whose father was a politically connected businessman and MCA official who embraced the corrupted BN regime.
So, unsurprisingly perhaps, civil society and reform were not Yeoh’s thing. She has been only too comfortable championing Najib, speaking at his rallies and turning a blind eye to his blatant corruption
“We have a leader here who has done so many good things and will do more. I hope from the bottom of my heart that he will remain as the Prime Minister and I ask all of you to give him a strong mandate”
Yeoh memorably gushed in 2013. The fact her partner had received a plot of land and huge allowances including RM380,000 to cover their holidays, was dismissed by Najib’s spokesperson with the explanation “When he gets to meet people or contacts in Europe, RM1mil is nothing”.
According to reports, the spokesman added that Todt had even arranged to meet a top film producer and people from the Paris-based Hello! magazine, adding: “You think we can get that kind of access easily? No way!”
Yeoh sang for her supper then. However, it has not stopped her dashing in to co-produce a rival film production to The Sarawak Report [in which SR declares an interest] relating to the story Billion Dollar Whale which, like Wolf of Wall Street focuses on the lavish theft and waste indulged in by Najib and his side-kick Jho Low – all at the expense of the Malaysian people.
Ms Yeoh therefore clearly intends to carry on having her cake and eating it. Playing the victim and playing the Malaysian when effectively she is neither and making money out of the grotesque story of her fellow Malaysian Jho Low and his disgraced Bossku – a man whom Yeoh was happy to profit from and to support wholeheartedly when it suited.
What a performance!