“It was very cathartic,” reveals Ken Jeong about performing his Netflix stand-up special “You Complete Me, Ho.” Watch our exclusive video interview above where he adds, “my favorite segment was the last 10 minutes, talking about my wife (Tran Ho) and her fight against breast cancer. She’s now cancer free. Telling that story, weaving it in with ‘The Hangover’ and how that impacted my life is probably my favorite thing I’ve ever done.”
To work on this emotionally hefty set, Jeong says, “I went in with expectations that it’s not going to get belly laughs. I just wanted to see if the audience was listening. There are some jokes in that serve as undercuts to relieve the tension but keep the stories going.”
Over the years Jeong has starred in movies such as “The Hangover” and “Crazy Rich Asians.” He decided to return to standup after the sitcom he created, “Dr. Ken,” was cancelled. He explains, “I was very fortunate to get acting work, like in ‘Crazy Rich Asians,’ but I did feel in a vacuum. I was used to creating and writing scenes. Stand-up then came up organically. I hadn’t done stand-up in 10 years. I thought I’d closed that chapter in my career. I just did it for me and tried it out.”
Jeong also took on a role as panelist in the hit reality competition “The Masked Singer.” Based off a similar Korean series, he guesses the celebrity identities of costumed competing singers. On joining the show Jeong says “When I was offered to be on it I asked my mom. I’m of Korean descent and my mum still gets all her Korean TV shows via satellite. She was like ‘you’ve got to do it. It’s a huge hit. It’s gonna help your career.’”
Jeong reveals “I’m not qualified to be on that show. I’m not a trained singer. So I was very loose about it. I felt I was the Homer Simpson of the show. The producers enjoy the stupidity I bring to the show.”
The comedic actor’s TV past has also led to opportunities. He has a cameo in “Avengers: End Game” directed by “Community” helmers’ Joe and Anthony Russo. He also guest starred in the series “The Kids Are Alright” created by “Dr. Ken” writer Tim Doyle. For the latter he says “it is one of the best shows out there. It’s based on Tim’s life, it’s authentic, it’s a period piece. There’s no other comedy like that. Some of the writers wrote on ‘Dr. Ken’ as well. It was a good excuse to see some old friends under the guise of work.”
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