You will see more Asian guys on TV soon!

Screen Shot 2015-02-17 at 4.23.25 PM

Audrey Magazine:

Right now in Hollywood, it’s pilot casting season and (much to our delight) a lot of Asian American male actors are making headlines. Could this be the turn of the tide? Can we finally turn on the TV and regularly see Asian characters? We’ll have to wait and see. Although a number of shows have released information about their pilot, we will all have to wait until May for broadcast network channels to decide which shows to pick up and put on television. Needless to say, we have our fingers crossed for the shows which can bring forward Asian faces.

Apart from Daniel Wu’s Badlands, which has already been ordered directly to series by AMC, it is possible that none of the other pilots mentioned below will be picked up, but the rise in Asian American male actors being casted definitely gives us hope. Furthermore, they are being cast in roles that are substantial supporting roles or even leads. After all, it’s not just visibility that matters, but also the quality of representation.

Hopefully, we will hear about more pilot castings for talented Asian American actors in the upcoming months. For now, it’s heartening to see strides being made.

1. Daniel Wu

Image courtesy of LA TF

First up, there’s Hong Kong star Daniel Wu with his martial arts show Badlands, which cable network AMC has already ordered direct to series. Based very loosely on the Chinese tale Journey to the West, Wu stars as a “ruthless, well-trained warrior named Sunny” who goes on a journey with a young boy to find enlightenment. Wu will also serve as executive producer on Badlands. Only limited information about the series has been released, but we are definitely going to check it out once it airs on AMC.

 

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You Will See More Asian Guys on TV Soon

Screen Shot 2015-02-17 at 4.23.25 PM

Right now in Hollywood, it’s pilot casting season and (much to our delight) a lot of Asian American male actors are making headlines. Could this be the turn of the tide? Can we finally turn on the TV and regularly see Asian characters? We’ll have to wait and see. Although a number of shows have released information about their pilot, we will all have to wait until May for broadcast network channels to decide which shows to pick up and put on television. Needless to say, we have our fingers crossed for the shows which can bring forward Asian faces.

Apart from Daniel Wu’s Badlands, which has already been ordered directly to series by AMC, it is possible that none of the other pilots mentioned below will be picked up, but the rise in Asian American male actors being casted definitely gives us hope. Furthermore, they are being cast in roles that are substantial supporting roles or even leads. After all, it’s not just visibility that matters, but also the quality of representation.

Hopefully, we will hear about more pilot castings for talented Asian American actors in the upcoming months. For now, it’s heartening to see strides being made.

 


 

1. Daniel Wu

Image courtesy of LA TF

First up, there’s Hong Kong star Daniel Wu with his martial arts show Badlands, which cable network AMC has already ordered direct to series. Based very loosely on the Chinese tale Journey to the West, Wu stars as a “ruthless, well-trained warrior named Sunny” who goes on a journey with a young boy to find enlightenment. Wu will also serve as executive producer on Badlands. Only limited information about the series has been released, but we are definitely going to check it out once it airs on AMC.

 

2. Ken Jeong

Image courtesy of Korea Times

Before Ken Jeong popped out of a trunk in The Hangover series, he was a practicing doctor by day at Kaiser Permanente and an aspiring comedian at night. Now ABC has greenlit his comedy pilot Dr. Ken, which Jeong is set to star, write and executive produce. According to Variety, Jeong will “play a frustrated HMO doctor juggling his career, marriage and parenting, but succeeding at none of them.” If this gets picked up, perhaps ABC could form a one hour Asian American comedy block with Dr. Ken and Fresh off the Boat?

 

3. Brian Tee

Image courtesy of Zimbio

Brian Tee has been in a lot of movies and TV shows such as The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, The Wolverine and the upcoming  Jurrasic World movie. Now, he has been cast for the NBC pilot Love is the Four Letter Word, created by a fellow Asian American writer Diana Son. According to Deadline, Love is the Four Letter Wordchronicles the collision of race, sexuality and gender roles when three diverse couples put modern marriage to the test. Tee plays Adam, half of one of the three couples, a big, handsome man who is currently dating Sarah, a fellow attorney who shares his taste for sexual adventure, including three-ways with beautiful women.”

Asian Americans in lead roles in front of and behind the camera? Plus an Asian American male character who shatters the emasculated, subservient Asian male stereotype? We are swooning already.

 

4. Daniel Henney

DanielHenney-1

Daniel Henney has been cast in a Criminal Minds spinoff. According to Deadline,the proposed spinoff follows FBI agents helping American citizens who find themselves in trouble abroad, with Gary Sinise playing their boss, Jack Garrett. Henney will play charming family man Matt Simmons, an army brat who grew up abroad and really embraces the opportunity to explore different cultures. But first and foremost, he is the kind of guy you would follow into battle, and his split second profiling skills honed on the battlefield make him a crucial part of the team.”

Henney joins an illustrious cast that includes Tyler James Williams and Emmy-award winner Anna Gunn.

 

5. Albert Tsai

Image courtesy of Albert Tsai's Official Twitter Account

For those of you who didn’t see ABC’s shortlived critical darling Trophy Wife, Albert Tsai played the breakout character Bert, who was considered by many to be the best part of a very good show. Although the show was cancelled after one season, Albert Tsai is moving on and has been cast as Ken Jeong’s son in the Dr. Ken pilot. Another Asian American family on an ABC sitcom? Just maybe. Is it too early to start the petition for the Fresh off the Boat/Dr. Ken crossover? Probably not.

 

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Nicolas Cage Criticizes Hollywood’s Lack of Opportunities for Male Asian Actors

Actor Nicolas Cage arrives for the Los A

Nicolas Cage just wrapped up shooting on location in China for British director Nick Powell’s upcoming period drama Outcast, co-starring Hayden Christensen. But before Cage left the country, he gave an interview to Chinese state broadcaster CCTV, in which he reveals a few things about his role in the film, discusses his acting methods and speaks out against the dearth of lead roles offered to male Asian actors in Hollywood.

Answering a question about his experience working with the Chinese crew on Outcast, Cage took the opportunity to briefly turn the interview in a more serious direction.

After praising his female co-star Liu Yifei‘s performance and saying how much he enjoyed working with the Chinese industry, Cage added:

I hope that we will see more Chinese actors in American cinema too. We do see Gong LiZhang Ziyi andChow Yun Fat, but it’s very rare to see the Chinese male actor in Hollywood movies, which is something I take great umbrage with. You know, my son is Asian. He may want to direct one day; he may want to be an actor like his father — and I want that to be open to him. So I want to make some kind of effort to see more of that happen in Hollywood.

Cage’s wife Alice Kim is Korean-American. He said their 8-year-old son, Kal-El (named after Superman’s birth name on planet Krypton), came along with him to China.

He was here with me for the first few weeks, but he had to go back to the States to go back to school,” he said. “Selfishly, I wanted him to stay with me the whole time, but the teachers said he had to go back to school, so he went home.

Outcast is the first film Cage – whose filmography spans some 75 films – has shot in China. He described the experience as positive and noted that he has “no doubt” China will soon surpass North America to become the world’s largest film market, as many analysts have forecasted.

The film is a co-production between China’s Yunnan Film Group and U.S.-Australian outfit Arclight Films.

I do want to come back, and I want to work with a Chinese director and Chinese actors,” Cage said. “If there’s something that makes sense for a white guy like me, I’d like to do that here in China.

He said he views Tony Leung (In the Mood for LoveLust, Caution) as one of the world’s great actors.

I would like to make a movie with Tony, but I don’t know how to do it,” he said. “I want to do it.”

Last month Cage attended China’s Huading Awards, an awards show that honors talent across all categories of the arts. At the time he told The Hollywood Reporter that he hopes to soon move to Hong Kong.

He reiterated that desire in the CCTV interview, saying, “One of my goals is to have a base near mainland China. I think Hong Kong would be a good match for me. I like being in Hong Kong.”

Cage also gave a few hints about his role in Outcast, describing his character as a “reformed crusader,” adding that Powell, who is British, asked him to put on an English accent for the part.

I’m working with a character who goes through a catharsis — who transforms from a violent man, as a crusader, to someone who no longer wants that life — and he leaves,” he said.

The hardworking actor also shared a few of his methods: “When I act, I hear it like music,” he said. “In my head, I hear the dialogue like music. And the movements, like dance…I do design my performances, and then when I get to the set, the part I can’t talk about — the magic inside, the sacred part, the emotion — I fill it with that. But I design it first like a performance.”

Near the end of the segment, CCTV’s anchor gently challenged Cage on his recent filmography, noting that some critics have questioned his choice of projects.

You can’t make your choices based on what critics think. You have to make your choices based on what’s honest for you,” Cage replied.

He added: “I can’t let it bother me. I’m happy. I’m making movies I want to make. Something is working.”

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Nicolas Cage Criticizes Hollywood’s Lack of Opportunities for Male Asian Actors