Skip To Content
  • APA badge

18 Sandra Oh Facts That'll Make You Love Her More Than You Already Do

Including the best and worst career advice she's ever gotten.

1. Sandra Oh originally read for the part of Miranda Bailey.


But after she noticed the part of Cristina, she decided to "practice asking for what she wanted in her life," and pushed to audition for the part of Cristina.

2. She's a self-proclaimed "very messy person."


She admits this is one trait she shares with her character in Grey's Anatomy.

3. She's the first Asian to win two Golden Globes.

Kevin Winter / Getty Images

She was also its first Asian host. And speaking of firsts: She's also the first Asian woman to be nominated in the Emmy's Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series category and the first Asian to be nominated for BAFTA's Best Actress in a TV Series category.

4. Her love of acting started when she took ballet lessons at the age of four.


Her parents enrolled her in the hopes of correcting her pigeon-toed gait. She says she sometimes think she's "a dancer stumbling around in a dancer's life."

5. And her first acting gig was for a "Don't Drink and Drive" PSA.

Though, she says she started acting professionally at the age of 15.

6. Her favorite shows growing up were Fame and The Carol Burnett Show.


Of the latter, Oh says her love of it "says so much about her," commenting on how the lead actress' spontaneity and special brand of comedy infected her with a joy for acting.

7. "It's a marathon, not a sprint," is the best career advice she's ever received.

Walt Disney

The words were courtesy of producer and director Mike Tollin. The worst advice came from someone who told her to "go back home (to Canada) and get famous, and then come back to Los Angeles."

8. The best prop she's ever taken from a set is the rug from Owen and Cristina's apartment (from Grey's Anatomy) before they broke up.


She says it is now in her living room.

9. Three things that are always in her dressing room are a toothbrush, ear plugs, and vitamins.


10. Oh's biggest piece of advice for actors is to "concentrate on your art" and "hang in there as long as possible."


Specifically, Oh says "getting to the truth of things" has been a driving force for her. Her other advice for artists is to "hang in there as long as possible," saying that a lot of acting is ultimately a numbers game. She says that putting her face in stories again and again has helped people (presumably, casting agents and directors) consider her in roles that they may not have been open to before.

11. As a child of immigrant Korean parents, Oh says that (at the outset of her career) she imposed "tremendous [and] binding pressure" on herself to somehow pay back her parents' investment in her family.

12. When Oh first read the Killing Eve script, she didn't realize she was being considered for the lead role.

Emma Mcintyre / Getty Images

“She assumed we wanted her for someone other than Eve,” Waller-Bridge told TIME. Regarding the unconscious (and often conscious) bias she sees in casting, Oh has said, however, that she's worked with a lot of people who can see past it, and that "they happen to be women and women of color."

13. She's set to voice a part in Invincible, an eight-part Amazon series based on the superhero comic., Mike Coppola / Getty Images

It won't be her first time lending her voice to an animated part, though. She's also had voice roles in Mulan II and The Land Before Time XIII: The Wisdom of Friends.

14. Oh admits she's obsessed with "skincare, food, her backyard, and her nieces and nephews."

Emma Mcintyre / Getty Images

Though she says she does try and avoid "states of obsession" in general.

15. At 25, she said her dream part was "any role in a Chekhov play."

16. She had her first boyfriend when she was 18.

Vince Bucci / Getty Images

She attributes this to her strict parents.

17. The most awkward place she's been recognized is at a spa in Los Angeles.


She's specifically referring to Korean spas, which require patrons to take off all their clothes.

18. She said affirmative action helped her get her foot in the door in the acting world.

Emma Mcintyre / Getty Images

According to Oh, Canada's mandated diversity helped her be considered for roles that she otherwise would've been passed up for.

For Asians waiting for their own moment in the spotlight, Oh assures them that it will come, but that until that day, they must work on the change within themselves. "It's just suffering waiting for the larger structure to change," says Oh. "Hollywood is like a bad boyfriend. Why are you waiting for him to text you? Just go out with your friends or on your own and have a good time!"

Check out how BuzzFeed is celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month!

Ellie Sunakawa / BuzzFeed

BuzzFeed Daily

Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

Newsletter signup form