1991 Japanese commercial for Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past featuring a female Link.
"Did you know that Link is a girl? She’s a high school student we found through our audition. Link, the hero of The Legend of Zelda, is male, but when we were thinking about how to put it into live action we decided a boyish-looking girl would be better than a real boy." — Yoshiaki Kuratsune, creative director