I am joined by none other than Ian Alexander (Buck Vu of The OA) and Vivien Ngô (Trinh Phan of Queen Sugar) to talk about what it’s like being gaysian in the entertainment industry, their humble beginnings as children of Asian immigrants, and their latest thriller, Daughter. They share some mindful advice on how to create a more equitable workspace for queer actors and having more diverse representation for cast and crew.
Ian (he/him) is an actor best known for his role as Buck Vu in the Netflix sci-fi series The OA. He will be making his video game debut as “Lev” in the highly anticipated The Last of Us Part II for Naughty Dog. Ian is a passionate advocate for transgender and racial justice, and he hopes to see more representation of transgender youth in media. When he’s not on set, Ian loves taking naps and walking his dog Max.
Vivien (she/her) is most known for her role as Trinh Phan on Ava Duvernay’s Queen Sugar, and roles on NCIS: New Orleans, Shameless, and films that have played at Slamdance, SXSW, Fantastic Fest, and Cannes. Other career highlights include being drowned on primetime tv, eating nước mắm on cable tv, and talking to an imaginary dagger on Shakespeare’s Globe. In her free time, she enjoys browsing the web for Vietnamese memes… and dogs!
On this episode, we talk about:
- What it was like navigating their queer identity with Asian immigrant families
- Growing up Asian and discovering Asian pride
- Experience working on The OA as one of the first trans Asian roles in media
- How was it like being transformed into a video game character
- Working with Ava DuVernay and learning how she casts for roles
- Fundraising and leading a POC-led film, Daughter
- Advice on how to casting more diverse crew and talent
- Creating a more equitable work environment, especially for trans and POC
- Why representation is so important in media and entertainment
GLAAD trans resources: https://www.glaad.org/transgender/resources
Daughter’s Seed & Spark campaign: https://www.seedandspark.com/fund/daughter#story
You can find Ian at @ianaiexander
You can find Vivien at @vivientngo
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