월요일, 7월 22, 2024
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5 Korean Faces in U.S. TV

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In the upcoming years, America has seen more and more Korean representatives of American television. Let’s look at 5 of Korea’s reps in the United States entertainment industry, featuring famous works known by the world and underrated pieces you should watch.

  1. John Cho played Hikaru Sulu of Star Trek

With 6 awards and 8 nominations, John Yohan Cho is best known for his role in Abrams’ Startrek (2009). Born in Seoul, South Korea, and graduating from the University of California at Berkeley, Cho taught at a high school in L.A. with his English B.A. Later, he began to act with the East West Players, self-labeled as “the nation’s premier Asian American Theatre”.

Other featured films:

  • Searching (2018): David Kim
  • Yellow (1997): Joey
  • Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle (2004): Harold Lee
  • Big Fat Liar (2002): Dustin “Dusty” Wong
  • Wish Dragon (2021): Long (voice)
  1. Sandra Oh played Dr. Christina Yang of Grey’s Anatomy

The famous TV series Grey’s Anatomy (2005-2014)features a fan-loved character named Dr. Christina Yang. Dr. Yang is played by Korean-American Sandra Oh who was born to Korean parents in Canada. She “began her career as a ballet dancer and eventually studied drama at the National Theatre School in Montreal” (IMDb). With an impressive 26 wins and 79 nominations, Oh has an amazing acting career and is an inspiration to not just American, but all aspiring Asians ready to step into the world of acting.

Other featured films:

  • Double Happiness (1995): Jade Li
  • Killing Eve (2018-2022): Eve Polastri
  • Last Night (1999): Sandra
  • Under the Tuscan Sun (2003): Patti
  • Quiz Lady (2023): Jenny
  1. Ma Dong-Seok played Gilgamesh of Eternals

With a name in Hollywood, Ma Dong-Seok, born Lee Dong-seok and known as Don Lee has made history for Korean-Americans in the U.S. film industry, if not the world’s. Starring alongside other well-known American actors such as Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, and Kit Harington has created quite a reputation for himself. As one of the most successful South Korean actors, he has given a voice to others and is an inspiration for kids all over the world and years to come.

Other featured films:

  • Train to Busan (2016): Sang-hwa
  • The Outlaws (2017): Ma Seok-do
    • Sequel: The Roundup series
  • The Good, the Bad, the Weird (2008): Gom
  • The Bad Guys: Reign of Chaos (2019): Park Woong-Cheol
  1. Sung Kang played Han Lue of the Fast and Furious franchise

With a racing heart, fans watch the famous Fast and Furious movie series about underground street racing. Kang plays an aloof, cool character, but also one true to self. Likewise to his character, Kang is also Korean. “Though Better Luck Tomorrow (2002) is not an official part of the Fast and Furious saga” it set up Kang’s acting career which he was actually planning on quitting if it didn’t succeed in the first five years. Thankfully, his career soared and landed roles in other popular films.

Other featured films:

  • Code 8 (2019): Officer Alex Park
  • Bullet to the Head (2012): Taylor Kwon
  • Pearl Harbor (2001): Listener
  • Snakehead (2021): Rambo
  • Undoing (2006): Samuel
  1. Nicole Kang played Mary Hamilton/Poison Ivy of Batwoman

Young Kang, born in Los Angeles of Korean descent has helped shatter the challenges and barriers Asian Americans face. By playing Poison Ivy in Batwoman (2019-2022), she feels accomplished at what she has done to help break stereotypes. As a teenager, she was a competitive figure skater and is a trained ballet/jazz dancer and singer.

Other featured films:

  • Ten Minutes to Midnight (2020): Sienna
  • Orange Is the New Black (2019): Kiki
  • You (2018): Lynn Lieser
  • The Feels (2019): Cline
  • Swallow (2019): Bev

In just the last 20 years, Asian American representation in one of the world’s biggest film industries has grown tremendously. For future generations, audiences will no longer have to ponder what may have been different or the same if the actor was Asian. Even with the disapproving reactions they may face, or the threat of a career, these people and hundreds more have allowed young Asians across the globe to feel heard and seen. Through the risks, terrors, and defiances, the Asian community has made a proud name for themselves through the billions of screens across the world.

by Bahnya Kim

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coloradotimes
coloradotimeshttps://coloradotimesnews.com/
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