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Walking Dead's Steven Yeun Is On a Mission to Create Better Roles for Asian Actors

Walking Dead's Steven Yeun Is On a Mission to Create Better Roles for Asian Actors

Steven Yeun may be one of the leads on the biggest show on television, The Walking Dead, but that doesn’t mean he’s getting tons of roles in other projects now.

“People ask, ‘So, how are the roles now? You must be getting so many.’ And it’s like, I don’t know if you know, but I’m Asian still,” the 30-year-old actor told TheWrap.

“It’s not a complaint, that’s just how it is now, and I have to forge my own path through it and see that through,” Steven added. “I think that if I had not been Asian, I probably would have a whole plethora of roles, at least to audition for, but it’s just not what has been written.”

So how is Steven fixing that problem? Writing and producing his own projects! He is the executive producer and star of the upcoming movie The Aquariums of Pyongyang, which follows a man whose childhood years are spent in a North Korean concentration camp.

Steven also has several other projects that are early in development. “We’ve been working on some comedy stuff and in cartoon form, as well,” he revealed. “And then there are some film ideas that have always been batting around my head. I just want to definitely stretch that muscle, because you can’t just wait for other people to give it to you.”

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Credit: Dimitrios Kambouris; Photos: Getty
Posted to: Steven Yeun

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  • mike

    I think Spanish and Asians have it even worse than black people in the industry. At least Hollywood throws them a bone and let’s one token black person a movie. Plus there is always Tyler perry. But for the most part HW is full of crap. They scream about equal rights but will cast 90% basic white people every time.

  • Fercat

    It’s the prevalent stoic Asian stereotype which limits things. And it’s not just HW. Watch any Chinese, Korean or Japanese film and this stereotype is everywhere.

    People nowadays want a bit more emotion from their characters. There’s actually quite a bit of progress in this front.

  • Alaric

    Native Americans have it the worst. We never get anything.

  • lilravrgurl

    Just so that you know; Aquariums of Pyongyang is actually a book. He may be writing a script based on it but he cannot be the original author. It’s a fantastic book and I highly recommend it.

  • Truthie

    He is right. Akira movie is being made. He would be good for the lead role, but instead, they want a white lead–even though the original manga is Japanese.

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