Nov. 20th, 1963
Coloane Island, Macau
Ming-Na's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Ming-Na (translated her name means "enlightenment") was born on the island of Macau, a Portuguese territory located 40 miles from Hong Kong that was returned to China in 1999. Her mother Lin Chan Wen divorced her father when Ming-Na was only a toddler. She has an older brother named Jonathan. After the divorce, they moved to Hong Kong where her mother became a nurse. There her mother met Soo Lim Yee, a Chinese-American businessman. They soon married and at age 4, Ming-Na moved with her family to Queens, New York. Five years later, they transferred to Yee's hometown of Pittsburgh where his family runs the Chinatown Inn restaurant. Jonathan and half-brother, Leong, now manage this restaurant. Struggling to fit in at school, she changed her name to Maggie & Doris. She found a love for acting while appearing in a third grade Easter play, where she played a "klutzy" bunny. Her mother was not excited about her desire to pursue acting, She preferred that she go into medicine. Nonetheless, Ming-Na graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a degree in theater. She got her first acting job in 1988 on the soap "As the World Turns" (1956). Her big break came when she was cast in The Joy Luck Club (1993). When she needed a ride to the premiere of the film, her acting instructor sent one of his students, Eric Michael Zee. The two started dating in 1994 after Ming-Na moved permanently to LA and married in 1995. Ming-Na dropped her last name, Wen, at that time. She says she is now like Ann-Margret. Zee is a screenwriter and, with Ming-Na, manages At Last, an Asian boy band.
- She was one of the very first Chinese American actresses to have a contract role on the TV series _"As the World Turns" (1956)_ (qv).
- Speaks Mandarin, as do her daughter and son.
- Chosen by Goldsea Asian American Daily as one of the "100 Most Inspiring Asian Americans of All Time" (ranked #49).
- Graduated from Mt. Lebanon High School, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1981.
- Is a Star Wars fan
- Graduated from Carnegie Mellon University.
- Second child, a boy named Cooper Dominic, was born on 13 October 2005 at 2:23 at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica. He weighed in at 8 lbs, 9 oz.
- One of People Magazine's 100 Most Beautiful People in the World (2008).