Actor Transformation


Judy Jean Kwon


How did you get started as an actress?

I got started by accident. I was a musician and had dreams of going to New York. I actually wanted to be a musician or do musicals. I saw an ad for a “New York” acting teacher and called to chat.  I know, it’s silly.  Well, as they say, the rest is history.

What motivates you as a creative?

Telling stories. I have so many stories to tell and so many worlds I want to explore. I don’t stay in one group or in one life. I guess you can call me a loner. I have lived many lives and have traveled in many circles and observed a lot. I don’t believe in staying secure in a bubble but exploring as much of life as I can. After all, you only have one life. I want to explore it all, the good and the bad. Hopefully, I explored most of the bad.

Tell us about your series MILFriend.

MILFriend‘ is a comedy series about crazy moms in gentrifying Venice beach where culture, color and class clash. Being a loner and floating in many different groups of socio-economics, I wanted to tell a story about intersectionality and separation in our culture where the people that would not be in the same party, not only intersect on passing but clash and are forced to deal with each other.

I wrote MILFriend before #metoo, before #blm and before “Karen” was a thing. When I was writing the script, I found myself writing to an imaginary white audience and I asked myself why? So I wrote what I wanted to see and tell a story about what I know. I wrote this to give funny women a voice, give them nuanced characters, and to represent diversity, make the POC the leads. Most importantly, I wanted to laugh and have fun.

What advice would you give to someone who is new in the biz who wants to break into the world of acting?

Every person’s journey is different. Do your best to enjoy the ride and don’t whore yourself out. Seriously.

What would be the dream project for you?  What are you working on in the future?

I don’t have one set project that is a dream since I have so many stories I want to tell.  It would be a dream to get backing so I could produce my dozen or more projects and ideas.  It would also be great to continue “MILFriend” since I have many seasons of “funny” in mind.  Currently, I am actively working on an “Untitled” docuseries about building an off-the-grid farmstead in Kauai and I am re-writing my drama feature script “Pancho, My Father” based on my dad, a Korean Cowboy who found his freedom in death.   That’s a small violin story!

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Interview by Kari Nissena


© 2020 Kari Nissena

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