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‘Twilight’ Actor Says Children’s Television Is More Diverse Than Prime Time

Justin Chon played Eric in the Twilight films. By the time he landed the role of Bella’s high school classmate, Chon had already established himself on Nickelodeon series Just Jordan and Disney Channel’s movie Wendy Wu: Homecoming Warrior. Since then, Chon continues to work in comedies like 21 Over and indie films like Seoul Searching and Revenge of the Green Dragons. 

Justin Chon attends the 2019 Sundance Film Festival | Ray Tamarra/GC Images

He’s even directed his own. Gook, a drama about the L.A. riots in which Chon also starred, played at the Sundance Film Festival in 2017. His latest film, Ms. Purple played at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Newcomer Tiffany Chu plays a karaoke hostess caring for her ailing father. She calls her estranged brother (Teddy Lee) to help. Chon spoke with Showbiz Cheat Sheet at a Korean Barbecue Dinner on July 16. Ms. Purple is now playing in Los Angeles and opens in more theaters Friday, September 13.

Children’s television had more colorblind casting

Since Chon continued to work as an actor, and has cast his own films as a director, he remembers how good he had it on Nickelodeon and Disney. He found those more interested in having diverse cast members. 

Justin Chon at Sundance
Director, writer, producer Justin Chon speaks onstage at the “Ms. Purple” Premiere | Cassidy Sparrow/Getty Images

“I found that I could get more jobs in children’s television than say a cop show, without having to be the immigrant or the Chinese delivery boy,” Chon said. “On a kid’s show, they’re like, ‘Well, let’s just have everybody.’ It’s much more of an open environment. I think because I started younger, my breakthrough was doing children’s television on Nickelodeon and Disney. So that

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