PROFILE
Name:
John Cho
Birth Date:
June 16, 1972
Birth Place:
Seoul, South Korea
Height:
5' 10" (1.78 m)
Nationality:
South Korean
BIOGRAPHY
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Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle

Background:

“It's difficult having to hustle for jobs. Not knowing when the next job is coming in. It's hard. There are not enough roles out there. I try not to get wrapped up in it or I'll get depressed.” John Cho (on being an Asian American actor)

Korea-born, Los Angeles-raised actor John Cho began acting while studying English literature at the University of California in Berkeley. He was first noticed as John, the guy who popularized the slang term "MILF," in the “American Pie” films (1999, 2001 and 2003). However, his ultimate breakthrough was the character of Harold, a Korean-American investment banker who befriended Kal Penn's Kumar, in the 2004 comedy movie “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle.” He will reprise the role in its upcoming sequel, “Harold & Kumar 2,” scheduled to be released sometime in 2008.

Cho also had small roles in the films “In Good Company” (2004), “American Dreamz” (2006) and “Bickford Schmeckler's Cool Ideas” (2006). He will next be seen in the upcoming films “Smiley Face,” “The Air I Breathe,” “West 32nd,” and “Expats.”

On the small screen, Cho starred as Chinese deadbeat waiter Chau Presley on the WB/CTV comedy series "Off Centre" (2001-2002) and played the recurring role of Teddy Wong on Fox’s short-lived sitcom "Kitchen Confidential" (2005-2006). He currently stars as Ivan Throckmorton on NBC’s new comedy series "The Singles Table" (2006-Present).

Adding to his acting work, Cho is also the lead singer for the Los Angeles band “Left of Zed,” with whom he has released the album "Furious Bloom" in the summer of 2004.

The 5' 10" actor/singer was one of People Magazine's “Sexiest Man Alive” in 2006. He is married to actress Kerri Higuchi.


Reverend's Son

Childhood and Family:

Born in Seoul, South Korea, on June 16, 1972, John Cho was raised in Los Angeles, California, where his family immigrated to when he was just six years old. He attended Herbert Hoover High School. Son to a reverend, Cho graduated from the University of California in Berkeley in 1996 with a BA Degree in English Literature. He taught English for some time at Pacific Hills School in West Hollywood, California.

In 2006, Cho married his present wife, actress Kerri Higuchi.


American Pie

Career:

Berkeley graduate John Cho made his first professional appearance in the play "The Woman Warrior," based on the novel by Maxine Hong Kingston. He also made his earliest television appearances with guest roles in a 1997 episode of NBC’s short-lived sitcom "Boston Common" and ABC’s short-lived comedy series "The Jeff Foxworthy Show," in which he played a pizza delivery man.

Cho made his big screen debut in directors Quentin Lee and Justin Lin's independent film, “Shopping for Fangs.” He followed it up with a bit part as an aide in Barry Levinson's film adaptation of Larry Beinhart's comedic book, “Wag the Dog” (1997), starring Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro. He also starred in Rich Kim's 24-minute film “Exchange Value” (1998) and was cast in writer-director Chris Chan Lee's independent teen drama/comedy film, “Yellow” (1998).

Meanwhile, Cho was spotted as a guest in an episode of such TV series as the WB Golden Globe-winning primetime drama "Felicity," the syndicated drama starring Pamela Anderson, "V.I.P." (as a flower delivery guy) and the WB supernatural drama "Charmed" (he played a ghost). He also appeared in the made-for-television movie about the legendary golf player, “The Tiger Woods Story” (1998).

In 1999, Cho got his first big break as John, the guy who popularized the slang term "MILF," in Paul and Chris Weitz's hit teen comedy film, “American Pie,” starring Jason Biggs, Seann William Scott, Shannon Elizabeth and Alyson Hannigan. He later reprised the role in the film's sequels, “American Pie 2” (2001) and “American Wedding” (2003).

During that time, Cho played small roles in Frank Oz's comedy movie starring Steve Martin and Eddie Murphy, “Bowfinger,” as a nightclub cleaner, and Sam Mendes' Oscar-winning drama film starring Kevin Spacey, “American Beauty.” He also guest starred in an episode of the TV series based on the 1960 movie, "The Magnificent Seven."

Entering the new millennium, Cho played a parking valet in Brian Levant's live-action film based on the Hanna-Barbera animated television series, “The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas” (starring Mark Addy, Stephen Baldwin, Kristen Johnston and Jane Krakowski) and starred in Trac Vu's 18-minute independent film, “Among Others.” Afterward, he was cast in director Nick Castle's comedy movie starring Anton Yelchin and Albert Finney, “Delivering Milo,” and reunited with directors Paul and Chris Weitz in their remake of the 1978 film “Heaven Can Wait,” “Down to Earth,” starring Chris Rock.

Cho went on to co-star with Willem Dafoe in Ho Yim's take on Pearl S. Buck's novel, “Pavilion of Women,” and shared the screen with David Duchovny and Julianne Moore in Ivan Reitman's sci-fi comedy movie “Evolution” (both in 2001). The following year, he appeared in Justin Lin's R-rated film “Better Luck Tomorrow,” which was inspired by the 1992 incident "Honor Roll Murder," and in Shawn Levy's comedy movie starring Frankie Muniz, Paul Giamatti and Amanda Bynes, “Big Fat Liar.” He also played a DBA Emissary in Steven Soderbergh's film adaptation of Stanislaw Lem's sci-fi novel, “Solaris” (2002), starring George Clooney.

During this time, Cho played the regular role of Chinese deadbeat waiter Chau Presley on the WB/CTV comedy series "Off Centre" (2001-2002), which was heavily promoted as "from the guys who brought you American Pie." He also starred opposite Dan Aykroyd in the television movie “Earth vs. the Spider” (2001), as well as guest starred in an episode of the popular Lifetime crime-drama series "The Division." He then lent his voice to an episode of Disney Channel's animated series "Kim Possible."

After starring opposite “Gilmore Girls” star Keiko Agena in Sumi Yang's short drama film “Western Avenue” (2003), Cho landed his ultimate breakthrough in the 2004 smash hit comedy movie “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle.” In the film, helmed by Danny Leiner, Cho starred with Kal Penn. The film later earned Cho a MTV Movie Award and a Teen Choice Award nomination.

Following his breakout film, Cho worked again with writer-director Paul Weitz in his romantic drama comedy “In Good Company” (2004; starring Dennis Quaid, Scarlett Johansson and Topher Grace) and played the lead in David M. Rosenthal's comedy movie “See This Movie” (released in 2005), which won the 2004 Malibu Film Festival Grand Jury Prize for Best Feature and the 2004 Malibu Film Festival Andy Dick Film Scholarship Award. He also starred on NBC’s six-episode comedy series "The Men's Room" (2004).

From 2005 to 2006, Cho played the recurring role of Teddy Wong on Fox’s short-lived sitcom, "Kitchen Confidential," starring Bradley Cooper. Meanwhile, he guest starred in an episode of Fox’s critically acclaimed medical drama "House M.D.," Fox’s satirical animated TV series "American Dad" and ABC’s Emmy and Golden Globe award winning medical drama "Grey's Anatomy." Moviegoers could also catch him in Lorene Machado's comedy “Bam Bam and Celeste” (2005), Paul Weitz's musical comedy starring Mandy Moore, “American Dreamz” (2006), and writer-director Scott Lew's comedy “Bickford Shmeckler's Cool Ideas” (2006).

More recently, Cho played the lead role of Ivan Throckmorton on NBC’s new comedy series "The Singles Table" (2006-Present), alongside Alicia Silverstone. About the show that centers on five friends who meet at a wedding, Cho said, "Married friends divide the world between single and married. ’The Singles Table' is always so motley and you feel undignified."

Cho will soon be seen in the films “Smiley Face,” a comedy by Gregg Araki starring Anna Faris, “The Air I Breathe,” a romantic crime drama by Jieho Lee starring Forest Whitaker, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Kevin Bacon, Brendan Fraser and Andy Garcia, and “West 32nd,” a crime drama by Michael Kang in which Cho will take the male lead role of John Kim, an ambitious young lawyer who gets mixed up with Korean gangsters in New York City.

Currently, Cho is on set filming his upcoming film, “Harold & Kumar 2,” the sequel to the cult hit “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle,” in which he will reprise the role of Harold. He will also star alongside Chris Klein and Jared Harris in writer-director Wonsuk Chin's crime/thriller/action movie “Expats,” playing a Korean-Canadian translator. Additionally, he will play the lead in an upcoming made-for-television comedy movie titled “Up All Night.”

Adding to his TV and film roles, Cho has played stage roles in the Singapore Repertory Theatre's production of “Hamlet,” and a variety of shows for the East West Players, an Asian-American theater group based in Los Angeles.

Cho is also a talented vocalist. He is the lead singer for “Left of Zed,” a Los Angeles band composed of former UCB and USC students. They released the album "Furious Bloom" in the summer of 2004.

“With music, I get to feel real ownership with what I do. I write it, I perform it and even if it is crap, it is mine. With acting, you are a small part of the creative process and sometimes it is hard to feel like you are making an impact.” John Cho


Awards:
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