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    Randall Park
    talks about
    stereotypes and
    taking risks

    S THE father of the Huang family
    in Fresh Off The Boat, Randall
    Park has a tough job of keeping it
    together. His character and their
    family move from the comforts ofFORREST WHEELER, IAN CHEN, RANDALL PARK, HUDSON YANG, CONSTANCE WU
    Washington DC to the predominantly
    white suburbs of Orlando,
    in the 90s. Opening his own steakhouse,
    he feels it is a great opportunity,
    but the family doesn’t. Lead
    actor Park explains what he thinks
    of the show, meeting the real Huang
    family and how an Asian family
    takes centrestage on television
    after 20 years, to bring Eddie
    Huang’s memoirs to life.
    What research went into prepping?
    I studied the memoir, I obsessively
    listened to recordings of the real
    Louis Huang, and I’ve been taking
    Mandarin classes to get a better
    grasp of the character’s voice and
    accent. I also talked to the producers
    about the character to make
    sure that he was more than just an
    Asian version of the classic cheesy
    American sitcom dad.
    Stereotype versus reality.
    Before the series went into production,
    I was very mindful of these
    things. I felt the pressure from the
    community for this show to represent
    “properly”, to be as authentic
    as possible without being stereotypical
    or offensive. But the scripts
    to our show are not only funny, they
    are extremely smart. I think the
    show does a good job of humanising
    our characters. I’m proud to say
    that viewers feel the same way.
    Meeting Eddie and Louis Huang.
    The real Louis Huang is one of the
    coolest people I’ve ever met. Louis
    showed us the original location of
    the real Cattleman’s Ranch steakhouse.
    I noticed all these people in
    the area started coming out to say
    hello to him, to shake his hand. It
    was like he was the mayor of
    Orlando. I saw firsthand that this
    was a man of the people. Everyone
    loved him, and he loved everyone
    back. That’s definitely an aspect of
    the Louis we see on the show.
    The importance of a family show.
    It’s something that we all can relate
    to. That’s why it’s really important
    that we start showcasing more
    families with unique perspectives
    and different points of view. It
    reminds people that despite all our
    differences, we are all ultimately
    human beings, getting into trouble
    and getting out of it, family intact.
    The Interview created an uproar.
    Was it worth the risks?
    Risks are worth taking, especially
    in comedy, and especially if those
    risks are taken for a good reason.
    Despite everything that happened,
    I personally love the movie we
    made, and I’m proud to have been a
    part of it.
    What’s next for you?
    I’m really excited about being in
    the upcoming Wet Hot American
    Summer series on Netflix. I also
    have little part in Judd Apatow’s
    Trainwreck, written by and starring
    the amazing Amy Schumer.
    Aside from these and some other
    projects, I’m just enjoying any
    downtime I can get, spending it
    with my family and friends.
    Weekdays on Star World at 8.30 pm.
    — Aakanksha Devi

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