When Randall Park was a student at UCLA, he thought about pursuing a career in academia. Thanks partially to some creative writing classes — in which he wrote a part for himself in a student production — he decided to try acting instead. After playing a governor on “Veep” and North Korean dictator Kim Jung-Un in the controversial film, “The Interview,” Park landed the role of family patriarch Louis Huang on the ABC sitcom, “Fresh Off the Boat.” The third season premiere will air on Oct. 11.
Long before I became a fancy reporter (stop laughing, ya’ll!), I worked in a factory. It was one of the most mind numbing jobs I’ve ever had. At that job, I learned how difficult it was to earn a few dollars. I also learned that prejudice sometimes is harbored by other minorities, who are afraid that their own social status will decline if they align themselves with another person of color.
Have you ever been to a restaurant where they serve everyone but you? Here’s what we did.
September 4, 2012
Posted by: Jae-Ha Kim
Category: Go Away With..., Interviews
Tags: "Animal Practice", "Fantasy Island", "MADtv", "Star Trek", Bangkok, Bobby Lee, Eminem, Eric Stonestreet, Go Away With..., Korean-American, Maui, San Diego, Seattle, Soot Bull Jeep, Starbucks, Texas
Born in San Diego, Calif., actor Bobby Lee’s career started after he dropped out of college. He got a job doing whatever needed to be done at the Comedy Store, before he worked up the nerve to try his hand at doing stand-up. Many television viewers remember Lee from his days on Fox’s MADtv.” He may currently be seen in the Blu-ray release of “The Dictator,” which is being promoted as ‘“banned and unrated,’ the version you couldn’t see in theaters.” Lee also is one of the co-stars of the NBC series “Animal Practice.” To stay in touch with the comedian, you may follow him on Twitter @bobbyleelive.
When Vince Vaughn suggested that Steve Byrne create a sitcom, the comic — who’s Irish and Korean — came up with the premise for the TBS series “Sullivan and Son.” Vaughn — a longtime friend and supporter — is an executive producer of the show, where Byrne plays a fictionalized version of himself. “My daughter was born the day before the first table read,” says Byrne, 38. “My wife gave birth at 9:30 at night and I got in to work at 7 or 8 in the morning and I was beaming. The whole cast and crew were clapping and congratulating me. It felt like a good omen.”
November 24, 2009
Posted by: Jae-Ha Kim
Category: Books, Go Away With..., Interviews
Tags: "Everything Asian", Alaska, Anchorage, Asian American, Eee PC, Homer, immigrants, Korean-American, netbook
With his critically acclaimed debut novel “Everything Asian,” Sung J. Woo succinctly and poignantly captures a year in the life of a 12-year-old immigrant who tries to navigate life in the United States, while also trying to understand his estranged father. A resident of Washington, N.J., the 38-year-old author chats about his recent trip to Alaska, how he gets the best hotel deals and why he often feels like a tourist — even when he’s not far from home.
Best known as Ari Gold’s much maligned assistant Lloyd on “Entourage,” Rex Lee has become a fan favorite on the hit HBO series. With just a stare and a well-placed word, Lee is a scene-stealer, especially when he spars with his cantankerous boss Ari (Jeremy Piven). “I found out after I got the role that they didn’t have an Asian American actor in mind for the part originally,” says Lee, 39. “Women auditioned, African Americans, everyone. I was told they didn’t quite know what they wanted until I walked through the door and showed them what they wanted.” Laughing, he adds, “And I choose to believe that!”
Margaret Cho knows a thing or two about traveling. After beginning her standup career at 16, she toured the United States nonstop, bringing her unique brand of comedy to venues across the country. At 26, she broke barriers with her short-lived ABC sitcom “All-American Girl,” where she played a fictionalized version of herself. It was the first American television series where all the lead actors were Asian-American. In her standup routines, Cho talks frankly about how producers asked her at times to try to be more — and less — Asian. Now 39, Cho is ready to debut her new VH1 series “The Cho Show.”
It has been a busy year for John Cho. He has been cast as Sulu in the upcoming “Star Trek” film to be released in 2009 and he reprised his role as the stoner Harold in “Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay” – the sequel to the 2004 hit comedy “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle.” But the 35-year-old actor — who was born in Seoul, South Korea, and raised in Los Angeles — is about to tackle his most important role: that of dad. Cho and his wife, actress Kerri Higuchi, are expecting their first child – a son – at the end of May. “I’m taking a maternity leave with my wife,” Cho says, laughing. “We’re really anxious to meet this baby. I can’t wait.”
April 13, 2005
Posted by: Jae-Ha Kim
Category: Features, Issues
Tags: "Lost", "Memoirs of a Geisha", "Miss Saigon", "Sideways", Asian actors, Asian American, Bai Ling, Daniel Dae Kim, geisha, Gong Li, Grey's Anatomy, Jet Li, Korean, Korean-American, Sandra Oh, Steven Spielberg, Yunjin Kim, Ziyi Zhang
Once relegated to playing houseboys, prostitutes and extras on “M*A*S*H,” Asian-American actors are now appearing on prime-time television not as exoticized versions of reality, but as real people. Sandra Oh, superb in “Sideways,” is a star in the new medical drama “Grey’s Anatomy,” which has kicked “Boston Legal” to the curb and taken the prime slot after “Desperate Housewives” on Sunday nights at ABC. Or turn on ABC’s other hit drama, “Lost,” and you’ll notice not one, but two Asian regulars. Korean-American actors Daniel Dae Kim and Yunjin Kim (no relation to each other — or me) portray a married Korean couple stranded on the creepy island with a crew of folks including a pregnant woman, an Iraqi hottie, a fat dude, an African-American father and his son, a dog and a hobbit (or at least a guy who played a hobbit in “Lord of the Rings”).