A: I saw the posting for the movie and really wanted to be a part of a Vietnamese-American movie. It sounded like a beautiful story and I felt that I could really relate to the character so I submitted myself for the part. The casting director contacted my agent and from there I had an audition, a few nerve-wrecking callbacks and finally booked the role. I had actually sent out thank you cards a day before I received the call because I was almost positive I didn't get it, so it was an absolutely wonderful surprise.
Q: I heard this your first film, how was the experience?
A: Terrifying. Ha...terrifying but at the same time I felt like I was on cloud nine. I felt so happy and comfortable on set, I think I might have been the only person who didn't want to go home at the end of the day. It was truly a learning experience for me and I was sometimes unsure of my choices but I was lucky to be working with a cast and crew that never let me doubt myself. I felt very fortunate to be a part of this film and working with such a special group of people.
Q: How was it to work with Minh Duc Nguyen?
A: He was absolutely amazing to work with. So patient, understanding and creative. It was funny because he was probably the quietest person there, you would never know he was the director if you just stepped on set and yet he knew what he wanted and how to get it done. I felt very lucky that my first film was with Minh, he didn't really want us to see any of the dailies because I think he understood how over critical actors can be and wanted us to follow our instincts. I had no idea how it would turn out until I saw the first screening of the film with an audience. I was in complete awe with the finished product, he did so much more than any of us could have imagined.
Q: What do you think of your Co-star John Ruby?
A: I think that he thinks he is funnier than he actually is. I'm completely joking, that kid is hilarious. He was always cracking me up on set which kept things fresh and lively. It was a lot of fun to work with him. We had a couple intimate scenes together and I was a bit nervous but he handled them so professionally, it really allowed me to trust myself in those moments because I trusted him. He is a very talented guy and I'm so glad I had the opportunity to work with him.
Q: What kind of films do you want to be in in the future?
A: It sounds corny but this kind of film. I love independent film and the kind of story telling that they are able to bring to the audience. I feel that many of the films that are mainstream appeal to a wider audience and so some of the more delicate, non-traditional stories get lost in box office revenues. Of course when it comes down to it, I just love acting and would be happy to work as long as I'm able to. I also wouldn't mind playing a comic book character because I'm a comic book nerd and that would be awesome. And sci-fi...I love sci-fi.
Q: Who are your influences when it comes to acting?
A: I've always admired Natalie Portman since I first saw her in The Professional. I think she has made very strong choices in her career and I love her work, not to mention her Oscar-winning transformation in Black Swan. Another actor I truly admire is Ryan Gosling. His work in Half Nelson blew me away and the motel scene at the end of the movie (I'm sure anyone who's seen it knows which scene I'm talking about) absolutely breaks my heart every time I watch it...and he didn't even say a word. I want to be able to do that. I want to be able to tell a story like that and evoke real emotions from people. I'm also a big fan of old movies and absolutely adore Audrey Hepburn. She's so natural in everything that she does it's just beautiful to watch. I enjoy her films so much that I even dressed up as Holly Golightly for Halloween one year!