To Play The Part, Actors Must Talk The Talk — In Chinese

Hollywood roles for actors of Asian descent are still mostly limited to immigrant or foreign characters.
For better or worse, Steven Eng, an actor who teaches voice and speech classes at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, says the ability to speak in foreign languages or accented English is “an essential part of the actor toolkit” particularly for Asian-American actors.
"We are constantly going in for roles that are characters from foreign countries, so it’s necessary for us to not sound ‘American,’ regardless of the fact that we were born and raised in the U.S." explains Eng, who says he emphasizes to his students the importance of specificity when developing an accent.

To Play The Part, Actors Must Talk The Talk — In Chinese

Hollywood roles for actors of Asian descent are still mostly limited to immigrant or foreign characters.

For better or worse, Steven Eng, an actor who teaches voice and speech classes at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, says the ability to speak in foreign languages or accented English is “an essential part of the actor toolkit” particularly for Asian-American actors.

"We are constantly going in for roles that are characters from foreign countries, so it’s necessary for us to not sound ‘American,’ regardless of the fact that we were born and raised in the U.S." explains Eng, who says he emphasizes to his students the importance of specificity when developing an accent.

NPR

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