Mattel, the toy manufacturer behind the Barbie doll, has unveiled an Anna May Wong Barbie in honor of Asian-American and Pacific Islanders Heritage Month. The doll is part of the company’s “Inspiring Women” series, which features dolls in the likeness of pioneering women such as Amelia Earhart and Frida Kahlo.
Wong’s niece, Anna Wong, collaborated with the brand to create the figure’s look.
“I did not hesitate at all. It was such an honor and so exciting,” her niece told AP. “I wanted to make sure they got her facial features and clothing correct. And they did!” She also expressed her delight that Asian children will now be able to play with a doll that looks like them.
The doll features the actress with her signature elegant bangs and smoky eye shadow, dressed in a red gown with a golden dragon design and cape, inspired by her appearance in the 1934 movie Limehouse Blues.
Anna May Wong, who was born in Los Angeles in 1905, was widely regarded as the first Asian-American film star, as she was the first Asian-American woman to lead a U.S. television show, “The Gallery of Madame Liu-Tsong.” Wong featured in more than 60 films during her career, including one of the first films made in Technicolor, earning worldwide recognition.
The celebrity received recognition in 1960 when she received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She died a year later at 56 due to a heart attack.
In addition to her achievements in the entertainment industry, Wong is also the first Asian American to be featured on U.S. currency.
Wong’s achievements and legacy have inspired many. The Anna May Wong Barbie is a fitting tribute to a woman who blazed a trail for others to follow and a celebration of her legacy that will inspire generations to come.
Featured Image Source: Mattel