Actor Ke Huy Quan is finally making his return to the big screen!
The child actor was a hit with audiences in the 1984 “Indiana Jones” film, “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.” Now 51, Quan reflected on taking a 20-year hiatus from Hollywood after appearing in several successful blockbusters.
Ke Huy Quan Said That ‘Indiana Jones’ ‘Changed My Life’
“The Goonies” actor recently sat down with PEOPLE to explain why he decided to return to acting in the new indie film “Everything Everywhere All at Once” after a more than two decade break in the industry.
The Vietnam native recalled “Never in my wildest imagination did I think I would end up being an actor, but I fell in love with it. He said that “Indiana Jones” in particular “changed my life and my entire family’s life.”
Although he thought he would have an “amazing” career after he filmed “The Goonies” the following year, he described being typecast in roles that seemed stereotypical to the Asian-American community. “It was tough,” he explained. “I was waiting for the phone to ring, and it rarely did.”
In 2002, he made the “very difficult decision” to step away from Hollywood.
Ke Huy Quan Worked As An Assistant Director & A Stunt Coordinator
Quan decided to focus on his education over his acting career, but still remained close to the entertainment industry. He graduated from USC’s film school and worked behind the scenes as an assistant director and a stunt coordinator.
In 2018, Quan watched the film “Crazy Rich Asians.” That inspired him to resume his role as an actor.
“I was happy working behind the camera, but I had serious FOMO [fear of missing out],” Quan joked. “I wanted to be up there with my fellow Asian actors.”
In his newest film, “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” Quan shows off his acting chops by portraying three different versions of his character. The character, Waymond Wang, is a devoted husband to his wife as they try to save the world through a series of alternate universes. His wife is played by “Crazy Rich Asians” star Michelle Yeoh.
Ke Huy Quan Said He Felt The Script Was Written For Him
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Quan told the publication that after he read the script for the film, he “thought it was written for me because they are me.”
“I understood every single one of them,” he said, referring to the different versions of his character. “I don’t think I could have played Waymond had you given me the role ten, fifteen years ago. Looking back upon my life, all the highs and lows, I reached deep within me to pour my entire life into these three different characters.”
“For many, many years people recognized me only as a child [actor] because that was pretty much the last time they saw me up on the screen,” he continued. “I’m hoping when people see me now they go, ‘Oh my God! Waymond from ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ – and you were also in ‘Indiana Jones’ [and] ‘Goonies’!”
Unfortunately, Quan will not be in the long-awaited fifth installment of the “Indiana Jones” franchise, which wrapped filming in February.