Kelly Hu

One of the most successful Asian-American actresses of all time, Kelly Hu found her greatest success in genre projects, mostly fantasy, action and horror. After becoming the first Asian-American Miss Teen USA in history, Hu broke into Hollywood with a series of sitcom guest spots and her first film role, in "Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan" (1989). Television allowed the athletic Hu to achieve prominence by playing martial arts expert policewomen on "Nash Bridges" (CBS, 1996-2001) and "Martial Law" (CBS, 1998-2000), which led to further big screen successes as fantasy characters. These included a psychic queen in the sword-and-sandals epic "The Scorpion King" (2002) and, most famously, the steel-clawed assassin Lady Deathstrike in "X2: X-Men United" (2003). A string of voiceover work followed, as well as high-profile roles on a variety of TV dramas and procedurals, including "Army Wives" (Lifetime, 2007-13), "NCIS: Los Angeles" (CBS, 2009- ), "The Vampire Diaries" (The CW, 2009-17) and "Hawaii Five-0" (CBS, 2010- ). Although the lack of colorblind casting in Hollywood may have limited Hu's professional heights, the actress worked consistently, building a lengthy résumé that was impressive by any standards.