A-pop! is a monthly column about all things Asian in popular culture
By Ninette Cheng
NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY
I hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season because it looks like our favorite celebrities are! I have plenty of good news this month and a little bit of bad news. Let me start with the good. This December, Jang Dong Gun makes his U.S. debut in “The Warrior’s Way,” while Jaden Smith is announced as the star of M. Night Shyamalan’s next film. On the television front, Harry Shum Jr. gets a promotion, Lucy Liu stars in a new Lifetime miniseries, and “America’s Best Dance Crew” announces that it will have a sixth season. On a sour note, Bruno Mars is arrested for cocaine possession.
Jang Dong Gun is a warrior
“The Warrior’s Way,” released on Dec. 3, marks Korean star Jang Dong Gun’s U.S. debut. The actor, 38, is already a star in South Korea. He has starred in films such as “Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War” and “Friend,” the highest grossing Korean film of all time. Jang’s latest film features the actor as a warrior assassin forced to hide in a Western town in the American Badlands. Best of luck to Jang!
Jaden Smith to star in M. Night Shyamalan film
Jaden Smith recently starred opposite Jackie Chan in “The Karate Kid” remake. Now, he teams up with another Asian, director M. Night Shyamalan. No details have been released about the film, titled “1000 A.E.” Hopefully, this won’t be as disappointing as Shyamalan’s last film (“Devil”).
Harry Shum Jr. has a new permanent job
Earlier this year, I mentioned that Harry Shum Jr. rarely uttered a word on “Glee.” However, in the past few months, his work in “The LXD,” an online show about dancing superheroes, and “Glee” has been featured increasingly in the news and in this column. The television show’s producers seem to agree with the media attention — they have promoted him to be a series regular for season 3!
Congratulations to Shum for being on two hit series!
Who wants to marry Lucy?
Lucy Liu will be starring in a new Lifetime miniseries called “Marry Me” in December. Liu stars as a woman stuck in a love quadrangle of sorts with three men. The holiday show promises to conclude with a wedding, but with whom? “Marry Me” premieres Dec. 12 and continues on Dec. 13.
Er… I don’t know about this one. I can still only see Liu in her roles in “Ally McBeal” and “Charlie’s Angels.”
MTV greenlights “America’s Best Dance Crew” season 6
MTV will premiere season 6 of its popular dance competition, “America’s Best Dance Crew,” in April 2011. The show, fondly referred to as “ABDC,” has always featured successful Asian American breakdancing teams. The show’s past winners, JaabaWockeeZ, Supercrew, Quest, We Are Heroes, and Poreotix, have all featured Asian dancers. Hopefully, the winning streak continues!
Bruno Mars to be tried for cocaine possession
Last month, I reported on Bruno Mars’ success in the music world. Now, I report on his less-than-successful personal life. TMZ reports that the half Filipino singer/songwriter was arrested in Las Vegas in October for cocaine possession after being seen bringing a “baggie of white, powdery substance” into a bathroom stall. Mars’ trial was pushed to December. He could face anything from a $5,000 fine to a 4-year jail sentence. ♦
Check back next month to hear the results of Bruno Mars’ trial, see how “The Warrior’s Way” fares, and hear more news on your favorite Asian American celebrities!
Ninette Cheng can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.