Jamie Jilynn Chung (born April 10th 1983 in San Francisco, California) is an American actress and blogger of Korean descent.
Her career began on The Real World of all things. She was a contestant on The Real World: Sandiego, the fourteenth season of the show. However she has since gone onto bigger and better things - and has had one of the most successful media careers out of The Real World's alumni. Not that it wasn't tough to shake her reputation from it however; she claims she left it off her resume in most of her early auditions. She's also one of the most successful Asian-American actors working in Hollywood today. Though she too still falls victim to the Minority Show Ghetto - as evidenced by the Development Hell for the biopic Eden, which struggled to find investors due to its absence of a White Male Lead. They didn't have to in the end, and Jamie won critical acclaim for her performance.
Early roles included guest spots on Veronica Mars, ER, CSI: NY, Grey's Anatomy and a Small Role, Big Impact on Days of Our Lives. She got slightly more exposure with notable roles in Grown Ups, The Hangover Part II, Sucker Punch and Princess Protection Programme. Premium Rush is recognised as her breakout role.
She's also got Disney cred for her role as Mulan on the TV show Once Upon a Time and as the voice of GoGo Tomago in Big Hero 6 - a role she reprised for the TV adaptation. She's also The Fashionista and you can view her blog 'What The Chung?' here
She is married to fellow actor Brian Greenberg. Despite having the same last name, she's not related to Charlet Chung .
- I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry (2007) as 'Hooters Girl'
- Days of Our Lives (2007) as 'Cordy Hann'
- Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 (2008) as 'Commander Takara Sato'
- Sorority Row (2009) as 'Claire'
- Dragonball Evolution (2009) as 'Chi Chi'
- Grown Ups as 'Amber Hilliard'
- Sucker Punch (2011) as 'Amber'
- The Hangover Part II (2011) as Lauren
- The Hangover Part III (2013)
- Abduction of Eden (2012) as 'Eden'
- The Man with the Iron Fists (2012) as 'Lady Silk'
- Premium Rush (2012) as 'Nina'
- Once Upon a Time (2012-2018) as 'Mulan'
- Sin City A Dame To Kill For (2014) as 'Miho'
- Big Hero 6 (2014) as 'GoGo Tomago' (voice)
- Believe (2014) as 'Janice Channing'
- Resident Advisors (2015-present) as 'Olivia'
- Already Tomorrow In Hong Kong (2015) as 'Ruby Lin'.
- Gotham (2016) as 'Valerie Vale'
- The Gifted (2017) as 'Clarice Ferguson / Blink'
- DC Showcase: Death (2019) as 'Death'
- Awkwafina is Nora from Queens (2020-present) as 'Young Grandma'
- Lovecraft Country (2020-present) as Ji-Ah
- Batman: Soul of the Dragon (2021) as Jade
Tropes associated with her work:
- Actor Allusion: In Premium Rush, the romance between the leads is compared to the Real World.
- Actor-Inspired Element: She and Sarah Bolger picked up on the Les Yay between Mulan and Aurora, and read their scenes as if they were lovers. The show then decided to reveal Mulan was secretly in love with Aurora.
- Big Eater: Confesses to being one, saying she'd love to "eat my way through the entire world".
- Casting Gag:
- Grown Ups and Sucker Punch. She played two characters called Amber in back-to-back films -
- In Already Tomorrow In Hong Kong Josh (Bryan Greenberg) guesses wrongly that Ruby's from San Francisco (actually Los Angeles). Jamie Chung really is from San Francisco. Josh also tries to convince her to split up with her fiance for him. Bryan is her actual husband.
- Dawson Casting: In Abduction of Eden, Eden is kidnapped at the age of eighteen. Jamie was in her late twenties, but she also plays Eden across a Time Skip.
- Dye Hard: Has been known to add blonde into her hair.
- Dyeing for Your Art: Underwent three months of gruelling workouts, combat and weapons training to prepare for Sucker Punch.
- Enforced Method Acting: For Already Tomorrow In Hong Kong, she and her husband stayed in separate hotel rooms during production. As they were playing two people who just met, it helped convey the unfamiliarity between them.
- The Fashionista: She runs a fashion blog called What The Chung? - and given her penchant for doing action roles, this technically makes her an Action Fashionista too.
- Interchangeable Asian Cultures: Despite being Korean, she rarely plays Korean characters. Chi-Chi of Dragonball Evolution is Japanese, Ruby of Already Tomorrow In Hong Kong is Chinese, and Mulan of Once Upon a Time is from a Fantasy Counterpart Culture based on a Chinese ballad. Averted with GoGo Tomago though - who is Japanese in the comics but becomes Korean to accommodate Jamie.
- Magnum Opus Dissonance: Lists Sucker Punch as her favourite role, calling it a "beautiful movie" and citing the friendships she made with the other girls.
- Ms. Fanservice: Many of her roles are designed to show off her beauty.
- Old Shame:
- Played with when it comes to The Real World. She doesn't regret doing it, and still keeps in touch with her cast mates. But she left it off her resumes and struggled to be taken seriously as an actress for years because of it.
- I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry is a straighter example, where she had a small role as a Fanservice Extra. She was mortified when her mother called her up after seeing it, and says the only good thing about it is that it got her into the union.
- Older Than They Look: She's in her mid-30s and looks more like a 21-year-old.
- The Other Darrin: She replaces Devon Aoki as Miho in the second Sin City film, due to the latter's pregnancy.
- Playing Against Type:
- Race Lift: A proxy example. She plays Valerie Vale in Gotham - who is the aunt of Vicki Vale, according to Word of God. Vicki is a blonde white woman in the comics. Valerie is single, so she's not a Vale by marriage.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Mulan was Brother Chucked in Season 3 of Once Upon A Time due to Jamie being cast in Believe. When the series was cancelled, she returned for a couple of episodes in Season 5.
- Reality Subtext: In Abduction of Eden she plays a Korean girl who is forced to pretend to be Chinese. She herself has played a lot of Chinese roles, despite being Korean.
- Romance on the Set: She met her husband Bryan Greenberg after working together on two different films. They starred together as the leads in Already Tomorrow In Hong Kong.
- Tom Hanks Syndrome: She invoked this with Abduction of Eden. Having done mostly comedies or horror movies, she won critical acclaim for her role in the dark drama about a girl sold into sex trafficking.
- Typecasting: Early in her career she was stuck as an Asian Airhead. She's now called on to do a lot more Action Girl roles.
- What Could Have Been:
- She claims she was turned down for a part in the Crazy Rich Asians adaptation, because producers wanted someone who was Chinese (as she is Korean). She later criticised the casting directors for their hypocrisy when they cast another part with an actor who was half white. Later, she apologized for her comments after people accused her for attacking Eurasians. note
- Emma Stone was the original choice for Amber in Sucker Punch. After she dropped out, Freida Pinto was the second choice.
- She has auditioned to play Psylocke twice - in X-Men: The Last Stand (went to Mei Melançon) and in X-Men: Apocalypse (went to Olivia Munn).