TORONTO – Canadian-Korean actress Sandra Oh, 46, has made history as the first Asian woman to earn an Emmy nomination for lead actress in a drama.
But long before her acclaimed turn as a whipsmart intelligence agent in the rookie BBC America drama “Killing Eve,” the Ottawa-bred Oh amassed a diverse list of credits big and small, on film and in television, and in a variety of genres. The show premieres in Canada July 22 on Bravo.
She’s become known for a nimble touch capable of elevating even the smallest part, and a proud Canuck willing to flip between star-studded U.S. gigs and small indie film projects.
Here’s a look at some of the film and TV hallmarks that showcase Oh’s diverse range:
1. “Grey’s Anatomy” — It’s hard to think of Oh without mentioning her decade-long stint on ABC’s soapy medical megahit, and vice versa. Her beloved run as straight-shooting Dr. Cristina Yang still lingers with fans who haven’t been shy about pleading online for her return. While Oh has said it was tough for her to leave the series, she’s also clearly indicated she’s moved on to new challenges. And with the early success she’s notched with “Killing Eve,” she looks well on her way to crafting another indelible TV icon.
2. “Sideways” — Then there’s this Oscar-winning favourite from 2004, a wine country comedy in which Oh manages to stand out in the best-friend role alongside Virginia Madsen, Paul Giamatti and Thomas Haden Church. This time she plays Stephanie, who works in a winery where she meets Giamatti’s snooty Miles and the womanizing Jack with whom she embarks on an affair. Stephanie goes ballistic when she learns Jack is about to be married.
3. Oh, Canada! — Oh’s Canuck credits are lengthy both before and after her move to Los Angeles, with the actress often expressing her commitment to support emerging talent in her homeland. That includes providing the central voice in the recent animated feature “Window Horses,” and this year’s Vancouver-set dramedy “Meditation Park,” which reunited Oh with director Mina Shum, who also helmed her electric turn in 1994’s “Double Happiness.”
4. Don McKellar — Speaking of Canada, this homegrown writer/actor/director shares a significant portion of Oh’s Canadian credits, including 2008’s “Blindness,” 1998’s “The Red Violin,” 1998’s “Last Night,” “Meditation Park,” 2017’s “Window Horses,” the animated series “Odd Job Jack” and an episode CBC-TV’s defunct “Michael: Every Day,” in which she made a guest appearance.
5. Animation domination — Oh doesn’t need to appear onscreen to stand out. She’s embraced a solid number of animated projects in which she lends her nimble voice to a variety of titles: the Quebec winter adventure “Snowtime!”, the adult animated sitcom “American Dad!”, the children’s musical comedy “Phineas and Ferb,” and “Mulan 2,” among them.