Like most formal events this year, the 2021 Screen Actors Guild Awards lacked much of its usual flair. But in spite of the ceremony’s lack of a traditional red carpet, Jamie Chung found a way to make a topical statement with a well-placed, custom-designed accessory.
The “Lovecraft Country” star was photographed outside a Brooklyn, New York, firehouse in a red Oscar de la Renta gown. She held a clutch by Edie Parker, who has also designed handbags for Kate Hudson and Emma Roberts, among other stars.
Chung’s bag was emblazoned with the words “Stop Asian Hate” in gold lettering, alluding to the recent surge in discrimination and violence against Asian Americans in the U.S.
“In some Asian cultures, the color red symbolizes joy, luck and happiness,” Chung wrote on Instagram. “In Korean culture it symbolizes creation, passion and power.”
“I’m so proud of my history and heritage,” she added.
The sentiment recalled Laverne Cox’s 2019 Emmy Awards look. At the time, the “Orange Is the New Black” star carried an Edie Parker bag bearing the date on which the Supreme Court would begin hearing arguments over whether LGBTQ workers should be protected under federal anti-discrimination laws.
Chung, whose credits include ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” and Fox’s “The Gifted,” said witnessing recent incidents of anti-Asian discrimination ― many of which are believed to have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic ― was “terribly frightening.”
“It’s infuriating because discrimination is nothing new for Asian Americans,” she told People in an interview last month. “I think only now people are becoming aware of how bad it’s gotten and it’s disappointing that more media outlets aren’t sharing these stories. ... We can all do our part to help educate and advocate for each other. We can’t let up until we see real systemic change for all communities of color.”
The 37-year-old is among of host of stars, including “Killing Eve” star Sandra Oh and “Saturday Night Live” cast member Bowen Yang, who have condemned the growing trend of discrimination. Last week, K-pop band BTS recalled their own experiences with racism in an emotional statement posted to social media.