Entertainment Weekly: Get to know Awkwafina before she’s in Ocean’s 8


Entertainment Weekly (by Nolan Feeney):

It’s not every day that the cast of an upcoming ensemble film—like the women-led Ocean’s 8 project—is as good as the one you dream-cast in your head. But EW confirmed Wednesday that Warner Bros. is finalizing a coterie of stars that includes Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, Rihanna, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, and Awkwafina a.k.a. rapper and comedian Nora Lum. That last name might not mean as much to the masses as, say, RiRi or Bellatrix Lestrange—at least not yet—but here’s why you should get excited anyway.

Her claim to fame is a hilarious viral video

Awkwafina made waves on the internet with 2012’s “My Vag,” a response to Mickey Avalon’s “My Dick” that she first wrote and recorded on GarageBand when she was 19.

You’ve definitely seen her before

She had a hilarious turn as one of the Kappa Nu sisters in this year’s Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising, but she’s popped up on screen in a few other places, like as a co-host of MTV’s Girl Code Live and as a subject of the Tribeca Film Festival documentary Bad Rap, about Asian-Americans in hip-hop.

She’s got a classic New York origin story

Awkwafina grew up in Queens, studied music at the famed LaGuardia High School for the performing arts, and later graduated with a journalism degree from SUNY Albany in 2011. At LaGuardia, she planted the seeds for what would become Awkwafina with her own mock news show. “I used to chop up C-Span soundbites or interviews with politicians like John Kerry or Bill Clinton into a radio-esque show hosted by Awkwafina and her producer, Mookie,” she told The Daily Dot in 2014. “I would pitch down my vocals to have male guests, and would send them to a small circle of friends after they were done.”

She specializes in LOL-worthy raps

Really funny—her 2014 debut, Yellow Ranger, saw her take on Brooklyn hipsters and gentrification with songs like the title track (“Shout out to Greenpoint, Kielbasa in the oven/Greenpoint, where all the bitches look like Lena Dunham”) and “NYC Bitche$” (“New York City bitch, that’s where I come from/not where I moved to on Mom and Dad’s trust fund”). Some of the tracks are fairly New York-centric—“Mayor Bloomberg (Giant Margarita)” was inspired by Michael Bloomberg’s “soda ban”—but that won’t stop non-residents from enjoying them.

Her latest jam features a legendary comedian

She and Margaret Cho, who’s no stranger to re-working that Mickey Avalon song herself, teamed up earlier this year for “Green Tea,” which pokes fun at Asian stereotypes. “I remember watching Margaret Cho with my grandmother on TV,” Awkafina told the blog Angry Asian Man, which premiered the video. “She was my hero, not only because she was funny, but because she showed me that it’s okay to be yourself, that it’s okay to be a brash yellow girl, and to be a strong and brave woman.”

Who’s the Angriest Asian? Trademark feud leaves community torn


A legal dispute has emerged between two of Asian America‘s leading blogging figures, one that has confused and saddened portions of the Asian-American community, and has highlighted the growing clout and economic interests such properties wield in the digital age.

Lela Lee created the “Angry Little Asian Girlcomic strip in the early days of the Asian-American blogging scene, tapping into a nascent emotional tone that resonated amongst Asian-American activists and artists across the internet. Lee claims that Phil Yu, the man behind the popular Angry Asian Man blog, has encroached on her intellectual property with his expanding media efforts and the monetization of his blog.

While the legal wrangling continues, the impact on the Asian-American media scene has been immediate. On her blog, writer Jenn Fang crafted a lengthy analysis of the case Lee has against Yu, ending with a somber note. “What saddens me,” she wrote, “is that two titans of Asian America have come to blows over who has exclusive rights to call themselves an ‘Angry Asian.‘”

Culture critic Jeff Yang (and father of Hudson Yang, star of the ABC hit show “Fresh off the Boat“) took to Medium to express his concern about how the dispute might affect strides made by Asian Americans in media, calling the disagreement, “deeply damaging…to the larger, deeply interconnected community to which we belong.

The dispute is ongoing, and blog posts previously posted by both sides have been deleted as negotiations continue.


Angry Asian Man blog: Just another “ASIAN GUY” getting coffee at the Atlanta airport…

Angry Asian Man: 

Got this passed along to me from a reader named Joseph, who became the most recent recipient of a racial receipt. What the heck is that? Oh, it’s more common than you might realize.

You know when you go to a fast food or coffee joint like Starbucks, and they take your name to identify your order? Sometimes, your servers get lazy with the name-taking, and take it upon themselves to rename you with terms like Ching” and “Chong.” Or maybe they get creative, and bestow a title like “Lady Chinky Eyes.” We’ve seen it happen enough that we can give it a name. The Racial Receipt.

In this case, the cashier working in the early morning hours at Goldberg’s Bagel & Deli Company at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport couldn’t be bothered with taking Joseph’s name, instead going for a much simpler identifier: Asian Guy.” Joseph explains:

I took a red-eye from L.A. last night and arrived for a layover early this morning at Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Barely functioning and wanting a cup of coffee, I walked over to Goldberg’s Bagel & Deli Company. While the cashier taking orders asked the people before and after me for their names, she didn’t ask for mine. I was actually in the middle of wondering to myself how they were going to distinguish my order from those of all the other people waiting around when the employee distributing the orders (by calling out customers’ names) looked at me, kind of laughed, and gave me my coffee. Walking back to the gate, I wondered if maybe they didn’t bother with my name because I had only ordered coffee, which is a pretty fast order to get out. Then I looked at the receipt and found the all-caps “ASIAN-GUY” written out at the top. Needless to say, it was shocking and quite disheartening to realize what had taken place.

Joseph says he considered raising the issue at the counter, but he had a flight to catch. Sure, it’s maybe not as bad as “CHINX” or a freaking drawing of slanted eyes — Joseph is, indeed, an Asian guy — but I’m going to assume that Goldberg’s doesn’t label all of its orders with racial identifiers. Black Guy. White Guy. Latino Guy. (I don’t know, maybe it does.) So why the exception with Joseph the Asian Guy?

Not even trying to raise hell here. Just pointing out that sometimes you can’t go about your regular business and be John or Jimmy or Joseph or Junghwan. To some folks, you’re just plain going to be “Asian Guy.”

Check out this link:

Angry Asian Man blog: Just another “ASIAN GUY” getting coffee at the Atlanta airport…


Casting Call: Reality Show seeking Asian Americans Hip-Hoppers

Posted in Angry Asian Man:

CASTING: Group of Asian American Friends who strongly identify with Hip-Hop Culture.

Casting Call Information
City: Any City
State: National

Posted On: 08/21/2013 
Closing On: 12/21/2013
Company: Sean De Simone Casting

A major television production company is searching for groups of street smart Asian American friends with interest in hip-hop culture.

Do you and your group of friends have big personalities and not afraid to say what’s on your mind? We are looking for a group of friends that feel more connected to hip hop culture than the Asian heritage that their family has tried to pass on.

If interested please submit with into about you and your friends along with photos. Please include a contact number when submitting.

Check out this link:

Casting Call: Reality Show seeking Asian Americans Hip-Hoppers