Elizabeth Sung, a character actress whose 30-year career included such popular TV series as The Young and the Restless, The Sopranos and Curb Your Enthusiasm and films including Memoirs of a Geisha and The Joy Luck Club, has died. She was 63. The Associated Press reported that she died Tuesday but gave no other details.
A Hong King native, Sung also was a Juilliard-trained dancer and an acting coach/teacher. She did a stint in the American Film Institute’s Directing Workshop for Women in the mid-1990s, and her graduate thesis short film, The Water Ghost, earned her an MBA in directing from AFI.
But by then she already had been racking up credits as an actress, guesting on series including The Equalizer, China Beach, Murder, She Wrote and Knots Landing and appearing on the big screen in Tango & Cash and The Joy Luck Club. Perhaps her most high-profile role was as restaurateur Luan in The Young and the Restless in 1994-95.
Sung had worked steadily since then as well, in such films as Lethal Weapon 4, Falling for Grace and Memoirs of a Geisha but with a focus on episodic TV. Her long his of guest roles on the small screen since the mid-’90s range from Picket Fences, Charmed, NYPD Blue and Touched by an Angel to House, Desperate Housewives, CSI, NCIS: Los Angeles, Hawaii Five-O and Curb Your Enthusiasm. Her most recent credits include Shameless, Elementary, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders and Disjointed.
Sung is survived by husband, actor-screenwriter Peter Tulipan; her sisters, Diana Sung and Margaret Au-Yeung; niece Elizabeth Sieverding; and nephew Philip Sieverding. The family asks that those wishing to honor her make a donation to the Elizabeth Sung Memorial Scholarship Fund at Visual Communications. Proceeds will be used to expand opportunities for emerging Asian-Pacific-American talent.