Kenneth Choi is an American actor who is best known for his roles in The Wolf Of Wall Street, American Crime Story: The People v. O. J. Simpson and Sons Of Anarchy. Possibly the most interesting thing about Kenneth Choi is that his career path did not take the stereotypical route expected of Asian American actors. Since he began his career, the actor has consistently chosen roles which are versatile and defy stereotype. He has the type of career many other actors dream of. The fact that he is extremely talented and unrelenting has certainly helped.
The actor was born to Korean immigrants in Chicago, Illinois. His mother was a registered nurse who became a stay-at-home mother while his father was a businessman and an electrical engineering professor.
Kenneth was the middle child of three. He attended Longwood Elementary School in Glenwood; after which he attended Brookwood school District 167 for junior high school. While in Junior High, he began performing as a break dancer. When he joined Homewood-Flossmoor High School, he became a gymnast and even ran cross country.
As previously mentioned, Kenneth Choi has managed to carve an eclectic and diversified career. Even though he grew up in Illinois, his career began in Portland, Oregon when he appeared in the 1998 Disney channel movie Halloweentown, which co-starred Debbie Reynolds – famed actress, businesswoman and mother of Princess Leia actress, Carrie Fisher.
As a movie actor, he most notably appeared as Chester Ming in The Wolf Of Wall Street. He also appeared in Red Dawn, Suicide Squad, Gringo, Hotel Artemis, Harsh Times and the sci-fi movie Bright. He also appeared on several television shows including Sons of Anarchy, Ironside, Allegiance, The Newsroom, American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson, Chicago Med, Counterpart and most notably The Last Man On Earth.
He has also lent his voice to the role of a gangster in the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas video game.
He currently appears on FOX TV’s hit show, 9-1-1, as Howie “Chimney” Han, a firefighter and paramedic. 9-1-1 also star’s Connie Britton, Angela Bassett, Peter Krause and Oliver Stark. It was created by Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and Tim Minear.
5 Random Facts About Kenneth Choi
1. MCU Legacy
The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is hands down one of the greatest cinematic universes of all time and as such, many people want a chance to be a part of it. Kenneth Choi has been lucky enough to not just land a role but two in the MCU. He first appeared in Captain America: The First Avenger, he played Jim Morita – a Japanese-American soldier, a friend of Captain America and a member of the ‘Howling Commandos’.
He reappeared in the MCU when Spiderman was indoctrinated into Marvel Cinematic Universe; he played principal Jim Morita, the grandson of his Captain America character.
2. Record Holder
In high school, he held the sophomore record for the Pommel Horse. The Pommel Horse, which is also referred to as a side horse is a gym equipment usually used by male gymnasts. It is made of a metal frame, wooden body and a leather cover.
3. Accountant In The Making
His parents strongly discouraged him from following acting as a career path. His father advised him to pursue a seemingly responsible career in accounting. He had initially intended to follow his parents’ advice and began majoring in Accounting at Indiana’s Purdue University. However, he decided to follow his childhood dreams of acting and dropped out of school. He has likened this act to basically running away from home. He cut ties with his family and had to do it on his own.
4. He Had To Learn To Be Great
The actor spent the years after leaving Purdue University learning and training with different acting teachers in Portland. One of his acting teachers was Paul Werner. Paul is an American film and theatre director known for directing In The Name Of The Father and Fall Time – the 1995 film which starred Mickey Rourke, David Arquette and Stephen Baldwin. By 2013, he was a resident artist at Baryshnikov Arts Center.
5. Building A Legacy
Kenneth Choi relocated to Los Angeles in 1999 and has since appeared in over 25 movies and over 40 television shows – a pretty impressive résumé for any actor but especially for an actor of colour.