Famous Asian People – A Comprehensive List
If our tight-eyed optimism toward achieving internet stardom or our penchant for eating noodles didn’t tip you (our valued reader[s]) off, we the bloggers 5 at Rated ‘N’ for Nasty are Asian. We as first generation, American-born, Asian-Americans, (except for Steve Ngo, who still hopes to one day find sponsorship to come over from Da Nang), have an innate yearning to leave our culture’s mark on the American culture.
Although this list seems racially biased and the first step in an “Asian-Power movement”, rest assured it’s not. I’m as American as they get. I can’t even speak Vietnamese anymore. I guess this list is kind of just a reminder that even though I do or don’t feel a certain way, I can’t escape being and looking the way I am. So let’s embrace me and my people shall we?
Naturally, all of us at Rated ‘N’ for Nasty are blind to race and embrace all cultures and creeds (except for Byron and Bryant, who watch Fox News). However, just because we’re color blind, doesn’t mean we don’t want to see more of that yellow all up in the American fabric. Quite the contrary — I can say with a certain level of confidence that each one of us wants to become famous or noteworthy for something and to breakthrough and prove that Asian people can do anything we want to. I personally, want to be the first Vietnamese person to do anything.
But until that day when you see our names in lights, hear our voices on the radio, or see Bryant Pham in a low budget and overall sketchy porno film, here is a list of famous Asian people that are currently advancing our cause. This first list will be the biggest encompassing all the noteworthy Asian people in America (just for simplicity sake, since we’re pretty sure there are countless famous Asian people in Asia — DURR!!!) that I can think of off the top of the old brainium. As more and more noteworthy Asians make themselves known, we will add onto our (hopefully) ever more increasing list. My hope is that one day in the near future, I can add a few of us to this list. For reference when I’m older, I am 19 when writing this. If I read this and I’m not famous for something by the time I’m 25, I will know that I am a miserable, miserable failure.
This list is presented in no particular order (except for Jackie Chan being “#1″ since he’s awesome), but is presented in a numerical list simply for referencing purposes. The list also is not restricted to any discipline or field — however, it’ll probably boil down to athletes, politicians, and entertainers.
Got anyone you’d like to see on the list? Someone on this list not “Asian enough”? Are you famous and Asian and feel like you deserve to be on this list? e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
|1. Jackie Chan What he does: Stuntman, Singer, Star of Rush Hour series, Big-nosed and lovable martial artist
Why we love him: He never wants trouble, and someone always seems to be killing his uncle, but he’ll kick yo sweet buttcheeks while grabbing your tie so that you don’t fall out of a 20th story window or off the edge of a cliff.
|2. Yao Ming:
What he Does: Plays Center on the Houston Rockets
Why we love him: He’s ugly as hell (akin to a pale skinned Frankenstein’s monster without the bolts), but he is a pioneer in the professional sports world, being one of the first noteworthy Asian athletes in the NBA. He’s not just a freak of nature either — the cat can ball. He can hang with the best black athletes on the court. In the shower room — well that’s a different story.
|3. John Cho What he does: The whitest sounding Asian actor out there, notable for his role as Harold in the Harold and Kumar series as well as his work in Better Luck Tomorrow and more recently, the revamped JJ Abrams adaptation of Star Trek.
Why we love him: He’s the man. He can act, and he has solidified the position of the Asian lead actor in the buddy comedy film genre, and more recently in television dramas.
|4. Tila Nguyen (barf) What she does: To be determined.
Why we love her: She’s Asian, and she’s got big fake bewbs. Yup, that’s about it. Bonus points for the last name.
|5. Yo Yo MaWhat he does: Cellist and one time guest star on the PBS cartoon, Arthur; Cause of several purposeful mispronunciations (ie, “yomama”)
Why we love him: He’s every Asian parent’s dream — he parts his hair to the side, he rocks thick glasses, he speaks perfect english, and people pay to watch him perform. Ever since Yo Yo Ma came onto the classical music scene, every Asian teenager in the world has had someone to blame for the countless hours of practicing as well as for the violin/cello/violincello collecting dust in their closet.
|6. Kaba ModernWhat they do: They dance son. Whoo, do they dance!
Why we love them: (above). This one is a six-fer. After placing 3rd in MTVs America’s Best Dance Crew, this crew of 6 Asian American UCI students sparked a revolution in the youth of Asian suburbia. Now, you’d be hard pressed to find an Asian kid who can’t dance. Go to church during Vietnamese mass, and you’ll see a kid doing the sign of the cross and then breaking off into a 14 minute finger-tutting routine. Bonus points for coming from UCI.
|7. Amy TanWhat she does: Author of novels and short stories
Why we love her: Read The Joy Luck Club because I went to public high school. Watched The Joy Luck Club because I have two older sisters. And she really looks like a prototypical Asian woman does she not?
|8. Justin Lin What he does: Directs independent and big budget films
Why we love him: After graduating from UCLA, Lin penned and directed Better Luck Tomorrow (a groundbreaking film from the point of view of a group of misguided Asian-American teens), Lin moved on to direct The Fast and the Furious – Tokyo Drift as well as Fast and Furious.
|9. Ryan Higa/Kev Jumba/Happy Slip
What they do: Youtube Stars/VloggersWhy we love them: We most certainly do not. But props to them for getting theirs’ on the internet. I’m not sure who the kid is on the right. But props to him as well. Mad props all around! It’s the holidays after all.
|10. Ang LeeWhat he does: Director of such films as Brokeback Mountain, Taking Woodstock, and The Hulk (the first of the two crappy Hulk adaptations)
Why we love him: He’s Chinese, but he sure can direct the heck outta a film can’t he? His line of work has definitely put him among Hollywood’s elite.
10.5. Tiger Woods (doesn’t count — not because he’s half Asian, but because we don’t need this kinda bad press.)
|11. Harry Shum Jr./Jenna Ushkowitz (Asian Glee kids)What they do: Actors/Singers/Dancers
Why we love them: Although they don’t have Asian names, I can’t say I blame them. Who among us in the Asian community doesn’t know a Katrina Vu or Colton Maximilian Nguyen? I love them because they are both in a groundbreaking television show with a teenaged demographic. Show kids that Asian people are cool too!
|12. Lucy Liu
What she does: Star of film and television
Why we love her: She was mad sexy in Ally McBeal right? She was also incredible in Kill Bill. Being only a second year in college, she was one of the first Asian women of power that I ever saw in television or in film. Besides Treenie from the Mighty Morpin’ Power Rangers.
| 13. Don “the Nuge” NguyenWhat he does: Professional Skateboarder; Smoothest kickflips in the game
Why we love him: He’s a Vietnamese skateboarder in a predominantly Caucasian sport. Although he’s a minority in the skateboarding game, he’s no slouch. Considered one of the top skateboarding pros, he was one of the first skateboarders to ollie the notorious El Toro Highschool 20 stair set.
|14. Stephen Chow
What he does: Actor, director, writer, comedian, kung fu hustler
Why we love him: He takes the kung fu genre to a whole notha level son. Adding a buggs bunny like atmosphere to his off the wall and outrageously inventive Kung Fu Hustle and Shaolin Soccer, Stephen Chow creates groundbreaking films with familiar butt kicking action.
|15. Ken Jeong
What he does: Comedian, actor, doctor, looks like Kif from Futurama
Why we love him: He is just insane. A doctor by trade, a comedic genius by heart. This guys straight up will make you laugh. Ken Jeong burst onto the scene as the doctor in Judd Appatow’s Knocked Up, and hasn’t looked back since. Although he’s got a micropenis, his head for comedy is as big as his penis is micro. If you watched a comedy in 2009, chances are he was in it.
|16. Apollo Anton OhnoWhat he does: 7 Time Olympic Medalist Speed Skater
Why we love him: Every four years, like clockwork, this goatee-sporting, do-rag-loving, son-of-a-gun comes out of relative obscurity to smoke some fools on the ice for a few days. With his patented yawn, his soul patch, his long locks, and his blazing speed, this “bad boy” of the Winter Olympics provides some much needed edge to the Winter Games. He also is in a Dayquil commercial. Is the cause of many sportscasters making rather lame attempts at spinning his last name into catchy headlines. “Apollo nabs 7th medal – Oh Yes!”
What they do: : They dance son!
Why we love them: They’re kooky, they’re creative, they’re precise, they’re a little fruity, but we love them. I especially take an interest in them because they hail from my neck of the woods – Little Saigon, CA. It’s just good to see kids from my area blow up like this. With such strong support from the Asian community and robotics fans all over the country, these funny dudes with questionable hairstyles claimed ABDC’s Season 5 golden B-boy Trophy and $100,000.
|18. Cung Le
What he does: : MMA Fighter in Strikeforce, occasional film actor, full-time face round-houser.
Why we love him: He will kick you in your mother fucking face sometimes. His emergence marked the beginning of a marriage between graceful, fast-paced kung-fu and roll-on-the-floor-til-someone-taps-out Cage Fighting. His arsenal of punches, jabs, throws, and ground shaking kicks never fail to electrify the packed stadium audience. Cung Le remained undefeated for years until last year when he lost by way of knock out at the hands of Scott Smith — Le’s first match after a long hiatus in which he co-starred in such films as the Tekken Movie and Pandorum starring Dennis Quaid. Don’t fret though, Cung Le and Scott Smith are set to face off in a highly anticipated rematch on June 26 on Showtime.
While searching for possible images or designs to use in our “famous asian people” graphic, some interesting images popped up. Apparently, typing “Asian” in google images turns up only large-breasted japanese models. Internet people are perverts. Let’s work to make Asian people more than a race with sexy and subservient women.