One of the most standout scenes in the upcoming rom-com “Always Be My Maybe” draws from Randall Park’s own life.
In an interview with The New York Times, the actor, who stars as the lead character Marcus, said that the sex scene that takes place in the back of a car is based on his own experience. He later revealed in an interview with Vulture that it was, in fact, drawn from the day in 1993 that he lost his own virginity in his hometown of Los Angeles.
Park told the outlet that his high school girlfriend was home from her first year of college (he was heading to nearby UCLA) and the pair had made plans to do the deed.
“I have letters that we sent to each other building it up, like, ‘This is gonna be so special, and it’s gonna be great,’ ” he told Vulture. “And it was just horrible. It didn’t last long. It was clumsy. I remember afterward thinking, ‘It was supposed to be so much more than that.’”
Afterward, he revealed that he and his girlfriend went to McDonald’s.
“The moment that I remember is us just standing there, staring at the menu, and me feeling, ‘Oh my God, I’m a piece of shit.’”
As amusing as the tale is, the film’s fictional version of it is pretty revolutionary given the rarity of seeing Asian Americans in romantic roles and steamy sex scenes. As the Times astutely points out, “Asian-American men rarely get to be the hero in mainstream Hollywood movies, Asian-American women rarely pick the Asian guy at the end, and Asian couples rarely exist onscreen at all, let alone have sex, let alone funny sex.”
Asian American love and romance on screen remain something of a groundbreaking concept because historically, Asian Americans have been characterized as devoid of emotion. Sociologist Nancy Wang Yuen, author of the book “Reel Inequality: Hollywood Actors and Racism,” recalled a conversation with a casting director in which she was told, “Asians are a challenge to cast because most casting directors feel as though they’re not very expressive.”
Of course, the erroneous stereotype sparked a social media movement, #ExpressiveAsians, prompting a flood of tweets showing just how multi-dimensional Asians really are.