“Filming in America feels like you’re taking a vacation.” -Jay Chou
ISSUE: Winter 2010
STORY: Janice Jann
Before Rain and Wang Lee Hom, there was Jay Chou, the original Asian pop heartthrob. Since 2000, when the Taiwanese native came out with his debut album, Jay, the now-31-year-old has sold more than 28 million albums worldwide and racked up more than 350 singer, singer-songwriter, and producer awards in Asia. He’s bringing that star appeal to the silver screen this January in the remake of The Green Hornet, starring alongside Seth Rogen and Cameron Diaz. Marking his debut to the American market, Chou plays the title character’s partner, Kato, a
role originated by none other than Bruce Lee.
Stoked to be playing a masked crusader, Chou says, “I often like to do superhero movies. Because when we were little kids, everyone wanted to be a superhero.” Chou had to audition for the film, but he wasn’t too nervous about the outcome. “Acting in movies is an interest, but music is my real career so I had this chill attitude,” he says.
Landing the part exposed the superstar to something he wasn’t used to back in Asia. “When I’m in Asia, time seems more rushed, the schedule’s more tight,” says Chou. “Filming in America feels like you’re taking a vacation because you get this big trailer where you can rest, play video games, write music. So I used most of my resting time to write songs for my latest album.”
While Chou won’t be giving up his music career any time soon, his experience on a big budget Hollywood film seems to have peaked his interest. “The budget in Asia is not as big as in Hollywood’s,” he says. “One day, I hope I’ll get a chance to get Hollywood’s funding. I want to film a very powerful Asian American movie.” — Janice Jann
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