Evelyn Wong is an Asian American actress, producer, and writer. She was born in Monterey Park, California. For as long as she can remember she has been in love with movies and acting. After juggling with the thought of choosing a more traditional career like being a doctor or a lawyer she decided that neither was her true passion. She chose to follow her heart and pursue acting. She joined a theatre company, hereandnow, during college and toured nationwide.
Evelyn earned her Bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts from the University of Southern California. After that she took her career from the stage to in front of the camera. Evelyn is currently developing and filming her own original comedy webseries, 6two6 AZNs.
Hollywood Insider: Exclusive Interview with Actress, Producer and Writer Evelyn Wong
Hollywood World: What do you love about the role that you are currently playing?
Evelyn Wong: It is rare that Asian actors in this industry get to play roles that don’t encompass some sort of stereotype. On top of that, there is usually only one Asian actor per set. As a result, I never get to work with some of my extremely talented friends. This role not only gave me the opportunity to work with a cast of 10 other Asian actors but I also got to play a deeply complex and three-dimensional character not built on an Asian stereotype.
The world that Alina, the character I play, gets thrown into is based on a real past life of the Asian community of San Gabriel Valley in the late 90s to early 2000s which no one really knows about. I get to share that era with the world. I feel very privileged to be apart of this project and I’m honored to play this role!
Hollywood World: What is the storyline about in “6two6 AZNs”?
Evelyn Wong: Sweet, innocent Alina tragically gets her dreams crushed when her parents are unable to pay her tuition for her dream university. As a result, she has been subjected to an embarrassing living situation in her parents’ new home and has to attend Arcadia Community College in the meantime. Her upstanding” god brother, Jason, volunteers to show her around town. Falling into his circle, Alina gets thrown head first into the world of the AZN gangsters of San Gabriel Valley. This comedy is very smartly written with so many great characters. Think Fresh Off the Boat meets the Fast and the Furious.
Hollywood World: Who else is involved in this production, director, producer, actors?
Evelyn Wong: Our IMDB page has a list of our full cast and crew: Evelyn Wong (Lead actor, producer, writer); Savannah Southern-Smith (director, writer); Michael Williams (producer); Cylence Media Entertainment (production company); Luis Robledo (Director of Photography/Cinematographer); Paulina Laurant (Actor/Tessica); Allen Theosky (Actor/John); Joel Ambo (Actor/Josh); Krystal Maya (Actor/Registrar’s Clerk); Myles McGee (Actor/Gangster Guy); VyVy Nguyen (Actor/Janet); Ricky Pak (Actor/Leon); Greena Park (Actor/Helen); Samuel Wang (Actor/David); Leonard Wu (Actor/Jason); Megan Zhang (Actor/Felicia); Cornell Mitchell (gaffer); Dylan Acio (sound); Amanda Lehman (First AC); John Sierra (first AD).
Hollywood World: What makes a good scene partner?
Evelyn Wong: A good scene partner is present with you through the whole process. Even if he or she is off camera they are there giving it their all for you.
Hollywood World: What are your favorite projects you have been part of?
Evelyn Wong: I still remember the first movie I worked on called Coming and Going. I was very green to the business and was dazzled with the star trailers and sitting in the make up chair. That feeling sticks with me to this day. I am always grateful for every project I have been apart of. Another favorite would be the comedy episodic 6two6 AZNs for the reasons I mentioned earlier. It’s such a unique story that has never been told before and I’m trilled to be the one to be able to tell it!
Hollywood World: How much experience do you have in field?
Evelyn Wong: I’ve been in love with acting since I was 5 years old. I knew then that this is what I wanted to do. My love lies in acting but I have also had many years of experience being an executive producer and now writing. I am considered very young to the industry as I have not been around as long as some of these players and I still have much to learn. Does anyone ever really stop?
I did not grow up in show business so I had to learn everything on my own. That was a blessing in disguise especially when I was just starting out. I had to learn to carry productions not just wearing my actor hat but also putting on my producer, writer, wardrobe, and script supervisor hat on all at the same time!
Hollywood World: Describe your best quality as an actor?
Evelyn Wong: I think one of the main things all actors struggle with is listening. Although I’m guilty of being distracted from time to time I can always ground myself by listening to my fellow actor.
Hollywood World: What do you enjoy the most about your job?
Evelyn Wong: There are so many things that I love about my job. If I had to pick just one I guess it would have to be the fact that I get to play so many different people in so many different situations that I would not otherwise have gotten a chance to experience. Whether it be playing someone who has early on set Alzheimer’s to a double agent to a doctor and many more. I can’t believe how many lives I’ve gotten the chance to live!
Hollywood World: What have you learned from the directors that you have worked with throughout your career?
Evelyn Wong: Directors have a skill that not many people have. That is knowing how to talk to actors. Every director has a different approach as to how they connect with actors. Some were actors themselves and know what to say to get an actor to exactly where they need to be do get what the director wants out of them. Other directors have been writers and can really get you under the skeleton of the script. The directors I’ve worked with have helped me learn not to see the script just from an actor’s point of view instead from a 360 point of view from all angles.
Hollywood World: From where have you learned acting? What training do you have?
Evelyn Wong: I received my bachelor’s in Theatre Arts from the University of Southern California. Other coaches I’ve trained with are Scott Sedita, Margie Haber, and Silvana Gallardo. I currently train at the Upright Citizens Brigade and Center for the Cinematic Arts’ Actor’s Gym. An actor’s craft is like a body builder’s muscles. You always have to work it out and stay sharp!
Hollywood World: What has been your biggest achievement in the field of acting?
Evelyn Wong: My biggest achievement as an actor is when I learned not to get too attached to my character. We hear about actors diving deep into their roles, sometimes too deep, to where they can’t get out and it affects their daily lives. When I first started I fell into that trap. I was affected for weeks at time having nightmares and seeing very vivid thoughts. Now I’m able jump in head first yet walk out right after and continue to live my life. This was incredibly necessary especially when I’m on back to back projects playing very different characters.
Hollywood World: What other types of movies would you be interested in filming?
Evelyn Wong: It has always been my dream to be in a Marvel movie! I grew up with boys so I’m a tomboy at heart. I grew up reading comic books and playing with Transformers.
Hollywood World: How do you see your role as an actor?
Evelyn Wong: My role as an actor to is to be as honest and open to the story and character as possible. Nothing should ever be planned. Instead live every moment organically and be open to all the possibilities.
Hollywood World: What was your most memorable role? Why?
Evelyn Wong: One of my most memorable roles was in a play actually. The play was called Generations. I played a girl who was my age and we followed her to the end of her life all the way to her deathbed. Something happened to me on stage that I did not plan. First I was me in the present day but when I became the old woman I was all the sudden my grandmother. I experienced her death and there was a sweetness in the relief from the bodily pains that come from being that age mixed in with a sadness of leaving my family.
I saw what was in stall for me in the after life. “My husband,“ my grandfather, was waiting for me. I experienced an out of time and out of body experience. After the performance the audience members came up to me in tears and shook my hand thanking me. It is something I will never forget.
Hollywood World: What is your secret?
Evelyn Wong: You know how most people can get full and stop eating? I have this problem where I never get full. I can eat dinner then still have pizza for dinner number two with ice cream after.
Hollywood World: What other hobbies do you have?
Evelyn Wong: My other hobby and passion is yoga. I’ve been practicing yoga for 10+ years. I’m addicted! I also train in Brazlian Jiu Jitsu. It’s the yang to my yin.
Hollywood World: Who is your role model?
Evelyn Wong: My role model would be grandfather. He showed me that no goal is too big and that nothing is impossible. He was forced to flee China during World War II because he spoke out against the communist and was put on a black hit list. After escaping to Taiwan he worked with Chiang Kai Shek to help maintain Taiwan’s independence.
Hollywood World: What makes you feel like a star?
Evelyn Wong: When I come home after a premiere and have to wash the dishes or take out the trash. In this line of work you have to have a balance of glam with real life. It’s that contrast that makes me feel like a star.
Hollywood World: Any tips about how to be a successful actor?
Evelyn Wong: Never give up! Make sure you have a strong foundation. Surround yourself with people who enrich your life and lift you up. Otherwise you’ll go nuts! Enjoy the process, work hard, and stay humble.
Hollywood World: What do you want to be remembered for in life? What valuable lessons have you learned that helped you become the person you are today?
Evelyn Wong: What I want to be remembered for in life is being there. It’s as simple as that. Whether it be for my family, my friends, my employer or even myself. I want to have a consistent reputation of being there, being present and showing up. In world of unknowns I want to have live a life where it is never a question for me. I am always known in the unknown.
The most valuable lesson I have learned is never say never because that’s when you’ll end up proving yourself wrong. I’ve done that more times than I can count. Instead of being closed off to what I think will never happen I am open to learn from anything that can and may happen.
Hollywood World: What’s next?
Evelyn Wong: Although I can’t speak too much about it I can say that I do have a feature planned. It is unlike anything I have ever done before.
*Cover Photo by Cameron Radice